Don’t go to the restaurant on a 1st date ! Try to find the Phantom of the Opera … (Vidéo & podcast)


To listen to the podcast click here :



Today Umbert advises his friend Alexis, visiting Paris from Montecito in California, about dating.

Alexis thinks that French girls are tough regarding the dates, that’s why he looks for any original ideas.

The 2 friends think that the more original the place will be, the better chances Alexis will have.

They don’t want to look like random guys going in a random restaurant. 

They want something new, unexpected, creating a surprise them so the girl will have a crush on Alexis

That’s why Umbert advices Alexis to not go to the restaurant on a 1st date ! Try to find the Phantom of the Opera ….


« Paris is very small for those who love each other with such great love. », Jacques Prévert, French writter

« Paris est tout petit pour ceux qui s’aiment d’un aussi grand amour. » Jacques Prévert, écrivain Français


In this article :

1) Basic rules for a date

2) The restaurant

3) The cocktail or wine bar

4) Everything else is the best ! 


1) Basic rules for a date 

The first appointment should be in a neutral place, not late at night. Never at ones home.

Choose a refined place, quiet to talk.

The choice of the place is difficult because it is also very related to the habits of the protagonists and their intellectual level.

Try to find something close to where both of you live. You don’t want to have time for a lot of hesitations on your way home.

Avoid places where your friends are, or where you know everybody. Your princess wants the all attention. You want to be as natural as possible, and you won’t be if your friends or acquaintances are around.

If you haven’t met already, remember to mention a distinctive sign so you will recognize each other (color of your clothes for exemple)


2) The restaurant

This is one of the most common idea.

If you choose this one, try to find something original and chic.

You can choose a place with an all new experience. For exemple an Indian restaurant with a Bollywood decoration, and a very friendly staff. 

Another idea would be an ice restaurant, build with ice. 

The goal is to surprise her, and this place will be the topic to start the discussion.

Always stay with chic places, even if they are specials.

Fine dining are very old school, unless they organise a special and fun event. For exemple an oysters and champagne evening, or a thematic party.

A woman will always be flattered to be invited to a fine dining, but Umbert would keep this option for the second time. It will improve again the surprise effect, and also reassure her.

Don’t forget to check my article Chronology on how to behave at the restaurant like a gentleman, and respect the New Etiquette (Video & Podcast) before going to the restaurant.


3) The cocktail or wine bar

Having a drink in a wine or cocktail bar, then dine elsewhere is a very good option.

At least, if something goes wrong, you’ll be on time to cancel the restaurant.

Choose an intimate place, with beautiful lights, perfect for the conversation. The candles highlight women, and make them feel confortable.

Avoid loud music and too much noise in general, it will stress you.


4) Everything else is the best !

Umbert likes to go for a picnic, in a calm and beautiful place. Women never expect you to organize such a thing. It is also a chic idea, that shows that you don’t want to show off, but are real, simple and sincere.

An other option that always work is to travel somewhere for the night. This means that you will have booked the tickets or the place before, but this is very exiting and you will have plenty of things to talk about regarding this short trip. If you are in Paris try some chic destinations like Deauville, Dinan or Biarritz on the coast. If you are in New York, the Bahamas for the night always works !

If she likes sport or culture, or both which is better, try to find an amazing event that you can do together. For exemple the escape game Inside Opera where you have to find the Phantom of the Opera, in the real Opera garner. This is fun, chic and amazing !


Umbert is sure that Alexis, who works in the movie industry in Los Angeles, will find great ideas. The French girls will have a crush on him for sure !

Now, dear Alexis, you have to pay the bill ! 

Love and romance are at every corner in Paris.

And Paris is a city where you can plan and imagine whatever original idea you want, so be creative … and she will kiss you !

Before going out on a date, read my article How to be a winner at the first date (Podcast & vidéo).


What must be remembered : never show off on a first date, be sincere, simple, chic and original. Spend time to find a very good spot to be a winner.


Quiz : Register to my blog to get regular Quiz and learn more about the New Etiquette


You can post a comment or ask Umbert about your next weekend in Paris, and new etiquette advices, in the section below.

Sign in to download the 1st chapter of New Etiquette , and get the next vidéos, podcasts and articles.

Bon voyage !

Umbert De Paris

Don’t dress like a rock star, especially for a date (Vidéo & Podcast)


To listen to the podcast click here :



Umbert is always elegant, or casual-chic, even when he plays sports.

Why ? Because, most of the time, people judge others on their first impression, especially in Asia.

Even if you don’t care about your appearance, make an effort, it is essential.

The professional category, the age, the way of life, are important in man fashion, and each person will choose his style.

It is also a proof of respect for others.

However there are basics to respect to not look old-fashioned, on any occasion. Don’t dress like a rock-star, especially for a date.


« Fashion fades, only style remains », Coco Chanel, french fashion designer

« La mode se démode, le style jamais », Coco Chanel, créatrice de mode française


In this article :

1) The basics on how to dress

2) Différent styles

3) How to dress on special occasions


1) The basics on how to dress

Wear clean clothes. This seems obvious, but it is better to remember it. Of course, you will have also taken care of your physical cleanliness (hair, nails, skin).

Wear simple clothes, but that will showcase you, in which you feel natural and comfortable.

Avoid t-shirt, jeans with holes, dirty and too old shoes.

No flashy colors, keep them for later … Avoid the black color which is most of the time reserved for the funerals.

Avoid short-sleeved shirts, unless they are bent, sleeves tight, plain, prefer timeless polos.

Large belt buckles can be worn on jeans, but never with a suit.

The socks must go up below the knee, of course nobody can see them, but in Paris you never know …;) The choice of the color is important : choose the pant or shoes color, and avoid the white ones.

If you never wear suits, avoid them if the date or meeting is casual. You can also choose a mismatched pants and jacket to be more natural. Same for the tie.

Do not wear synthetic costumes, it shines, it’s uncomfortable, and there are so many natural materials available !

Never put the tie in the waistband of your pants, the tie should barely touch the top of the pants. The small side of the tie should not be longer than the large one.

Think about your age, your profession, your style and adapt your style.

Do not try to change your style at the first appointment. You will play a role inevitably, and this will take away all your natural. People will see it  immediately ! If your style does not please, it is not worth going further.

Now you are a rock-star, so smile and relax !


2) Différent styles 

  • The leader : during the all year, it is fashionable to wear a suit. In the coming winter, Umbert will choose dark suits with a plain, thin-striped plain shirt, and a plain or patterned tie (never the same color as the shirt), and a breast pocket.
  • The intellectual : fashion is not always important for them, they cultivate a style falsely neglected, that you can adopt when visiting Paris for exemple : tweed jacket, sweater with big ribs, comfortable velvet trousers, scarf.
  • The creative/tech : often in black or gray, no tie, but a scarf. Umbert loves to wear a cashmere scarf for the winter.
  • The exubérant : everything seems possible to them, but pay attention to the limit not to exceed.

3) Special occasions

On special occasions you have to ask the dress code. If there is an invitation, it should be written on the card.

  • Casual : try to stay natural, no excess, with a wonderful sweater or a sport jacket during the autumn/winter.
  • Casual-chic : you need a suit and very nice leather shoes.
  • Informal : upgrade for a dark pant, suit and shoes. That applies very well when you visit a friend in a 5 stars hotel or a fine dining restaurant, even if people are getting more casual nowadays.
  • Black tie : you need to wear a tuxedo, and the shoes that matches. Avoid to rent one, you will feel more confortable in a tuxedo that perfectly suits you.


Umbert always follow the fashion for man, but most of the time remains in the dandy-chic style, that the he loves so much.

Every month you can read about his Weekends to get updates on the best shops, and more advices.

Umbert doesn’t want to dress like a rock-star, especially for a date, because this is not his natural style.

What must be remembered : if you stay natural, but chic, and if you smile and relax, nobody will be able to destabilize you.


Quiz : Register to my blog to get regular Quiz and learn more about the New Etiquette


You can post a comment or ask Umbert about your next weekend in Paris, and new etiquette advices, in the section below.

Sign in to download the 1st chapter of New Etiquette , and get the next vidéos, podcasts and articles.

Bon voyage !

Umbert De Paris

How to be a winner at the first date (Podcast & vidéo)


To listen to the podcast click here :



Umbert’s friend Alexandre looks for a fiancée and asks for advices on How to be a winner at the first date if he meets a pretty girl, and asks her for a date. 

Umbert is a man to whom his friends like to confess. Politeness and friendship have a rule : never tell another person the confidences made by a friend.

Today he meets Alexandre at the Café de Flore in Paris.

Umbert explains that pretty girls are difficult to seduce, and they pay attention to the etiquette and good manners, so it is important to follow his advices.

After meeting the “right person”, here is the second crucial moment : the date.

It is also the second difficult part, because everything will have to be in fineness and elegance.


“You’ll never have a second chance to make a good impression,” David Swanson

« Vous n’aurez jamais une seconde chance de faire une bonne impression », David Swanson


In this article :

1) General rules for a date

2) The date at the restaurant 

3) The conversation during the date


1) General rules for a date

Simplicity is key. Be yourself, lying is a waste of time, she will discover who you really are anyway.

The smile is the number one asset of seduction. Be friendly and charming.

The one who makes a woman laugh will be ahead of the one who floods her with to many compliments.

Have physical, moral and intellectual elegance.

Highlight your qualities. For example, your success in an industry or a sport. There may be other contenders, so put all the chances on your side. Whether you are beautiful, intelligent, rich or the opposite, girls like success. Do not show off with your money, car or house. Make yourself appreciate for yourself, it’s important for the future.

Before the appointment, you can think of a few topics. A man who does not know what to say will have no chance to please.

Avoid at all costs the vulgarity, the “heaviness” in the behavior, and don’t do too much, or say too much.

In all cases avoid personal problems, excessive development, and focus on the interest of the other.

I you are open, balanced, attentive, confident, cheerful …. !! Then everything will be fine.

2) The date at the restaurant

  1. Arrive in advance . Never be late to the first appointment, it would be a huge and gross mistake. If it happens contact her as soon as possible to let her know, she will really appreciate. And don’t try the « sorry I’m so busy … », she wants you to be busy by her !  
  2. Personal items shouldn’t be on the table (sunglasses, phone, keys etc …). This is a table for you and her, not yours.
  3. Turn off your phone !
  4. Get up when the woman arrives to greet her.
  5. If you’ve never met and are disappointed : do not show it, you will not see again.
  6. Find a sentence to welcome her, delicate, kind without doing too much. A compliment on her outfit and elegance will always be appreciated. A little shyness does not hurt or at least a little reserve.
  7. Never sit down first. The bench is always reserved for ladies. If there are only chairs, think of pulling the woman’s chair, unless the butler does it.
  8. When you sit down to table, immediately put your towel on your legs, without waiting for the dish.
  9. Start the conversation and look her eyes to talk.
  10. It is the man who places the order at the Maître d’Hotel and chooses the wines, after having asked the woman if his choice suits her. Do not look at the neighbors’ plate at another table to make your choice.
  11. The man serves the drink to the woman who accompanies him, unless the butler does it.
  12. Before starting to taste the dishes, wait until she is served.
  13. If you have to leave the table for a few minutes, excuse yourself, you don’t have to say why. Place the napkin on your chair (USA only), or on the left side of the plate (Europe).
  14. If someone in the restaurant recognizes you and stop by for a short talk, just stand up for a few minutes.
  15. At the end, the man asks for the bill, and pay it discreetly. If there are errors, do not discuss them in front of her.
  16. On your way out thank the staff and compliment the manager. She will be sensitive to your politeness.

You can also read my article Chronology on how to behave at the restaurant like a gentleman, and respect the New Etiquette.

If all went well, ask for another date more original … You will find a good idea … !

You can take inspiration from Umbert’s monthly weekends, where you will find the latest perfect spots.

3) The conversation during the date

  • The Dos :

Ask her about her tastes, her life. (be careful, not on the intimate things).

Listen. Women love being listened to. Be attentive so she feels confident.If she speaks about her problems, listen, advise, but at least you will not have started. Give her always right … only for the first date of course !

Do not let the silence settle. It’s a disaster. Know how to re-engage the conversation with simple topics : news, travel. Be careful : no politics or religion ! No subject that make people arguing strongly.

Accept her opinions and speak calmly.

Unveil yourself, but not too much. Mysterious people always create curiosity in others, and always attract …

  • The Don’ts :

No drama, neither positive nor negative.

Do not talk about all your life, or do it briefly, without starting from childhood. Only mention happy and positive moments.

Do not flood the conversation of stories about your work, and especially with technical terms. Some funny anecdotes will be much more appreciated.

Do not show off with your culture, especially if your guest is not an intellectual.

Do not complain about everything (climate, cost of living, car breakdown, noisy neighbors, etc …).

Do not immediately talk about all the problems in your life (breaks, illness, loss of work, difficult children …). You would give a lamentable first image.


Alexander now feels reassured by Umbert’s advices on How to be a winner at the first date. They respect the New etiquette and good manners.

Umbert wishes Alexandre good luck, and offers to see him again if he needs further advices.

What should be remembered : feel confident and keep in mind that simplicity and smile are key. Never lie, she will find out.


Quiz : Register to my blog to get regular Quiz and learn more about the New Etiquette.


You can post a comment or ask Umbert about your next weekend in Paris, and new etiquette advices, in the section below.

Sign in to download the 1st chapter of New Etiquette , and get the next vidéos, podcasts and articles.

Bon voyage !

Umbert De Paris