PAUL, a chain of family-owned bakeries hailing from France, officially opens its first Boston area store in Assembly Row tomorrow, November 21. Its sophisticated black exterior with "PAUL" boldly engraved above the doorway gives way to a warm and inviting interior. The first and most eye-catching detail of the bakery is the display case that runs along most of the length of the restaurant. Inside, glossy and ornately decorated pastries and thoughtfully assembled sandwiches await guests. Macarons as big as small sandwiches and a variety of baguettes and other breads are also on display in the cases and in baskets that sit on top of the counter. The name "PAUL" is even spelled with big bread loaves on the inside of the window display. The white tiled walls give the place a clean look, and directly above the display cases and piles of freshly baked bread, another large sign bears the name "PAUL."
Past the displays of treats, a coffee and juice bar awaits with a shiny new espresso maker and a dramatic Zumex juicer, letting customers know that freshly squeezed orange juice is seconds away. Past the coffee and juice station, there's an open room enclosed by glass windows, allowing customers to watch all the bakery magic happening.
To the opposite side of the space, a lounge is divided into two sections. The first, located towards the front of the space, is adorned with vintage PAUL signs and other bakery signs. Comfortable white chairs are aplenty and invite people to stay awhile. However, there is no internet, purposely, to encourage interaction and a break from technology. Past the comfortable white chairs, higher top wooden tables and black chairs offer an alternative seating option. Further past and almost seeming as an entirely different room, the back section is decorated with library-style wallpaper. Sconces provide a soft glow and give the feeling of being in a library surrounded by books.