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Paris's Fine-Dining Restaurants Still Feeling the Effects of Terror Attacks

Even months later, tourists are staying away

Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Restaurants in Paris continue to feel the repercussions of recent terror attacks. Fine-dining restaurants in particular are seeing fewer customers and a decline in sales in recent months, according to a New York Times report.

Cédric Jossot, a manager at Les Bouquinistes on Paris's Left Bank, attributed the loss of customers to "fear of terrorism," telling the Times, "We rely on tourists — Americans, Japanese — and they are not coming." According to the report, broader economic trends have "resulted in empty tables at some of the city's finest and best-known restaurants. Lively bistros that cater to local French diners seem to be full; formal, expensive restaurants much less so." Michelin-starred restaurants, particularly those located within hotels (themselves suffering as a result of the attacks and financial conditions), are suffering the greatest losses.

Alain Ducasse, the legendary chef behind restaurants such as Le Jules Verne at the top of the Eiffel Tower, blamed empty tables on a "message of fear" being spread throughout France. "I was in New York after Sept. 11, and your mayor was perfect — he assured all of us with businesses there that life must and would go on," he told the Times. "This message of fear here in France is terrible for restaurants and for the whole economy."

Every Paris restaurant targeted in the November 2015 terror attacks that killed 130 people has since reopened. Even restaurants not directly affected by terror attacks tend to see a dip in sales in the weeks (and sometimes months) following. In Brussels, where coordinated terror attacks killed 35 people and left hundreds more injured in March, many area chocolate shops saw a decline in sales ahead of the Easter holiday, usually one of their busiest times.

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