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Final apartment short list - Marais expert thoughts please!!!

Final apartment short list - Marais expert thoughts please!!!

May 3rd, 2007, 01:28 PM
  #1  
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Final apartment short list - Marais expert thoughts please!!!

think we have narrowed it down to area and agency...
I've looked up what I can on pagesjeunes, found some reviews on slowtrav and other places, found what I can about some of these streets, but would like Marais experts in particular to give your thoughts on these apartments, all from rentparis.com
# 15- 79 rue Quincampoix
# 16 -38 rue Ste Croix de la Bretonnerie
#17- 29 Rue Rambuteau
# 22 - 10 rue Simon Lefranc

thanks to those who have answered my questions in the past, leading up to this short list, and to those whose posts I read to get information even though it wasn't to me
Canada_V is offline  
May 3rd, 2007, 01:46 PM
  #2  
 
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# 16 -38 rue Ste Croix de la Bretonnerie - I had questioned fellow fodorites about the location of this apt and was told it was fine - safe, etc. I'll be staying on rue Vieille du Templs. My friend and I considered the other one but we decided to save our money for food and other things since we wouldn't be spending a lot of time in the Apt. I plan to check out the areas where the apartments are located for future reference.

Monica
monicapileggi is offline  
May 3rd, 2007, 02:11 PM
  #3  
 
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I've rented 8 or 10 apts in the Marais, so do know the area quite well. Since I know nothing about you (how many people, how long, kids, expectation, etc.) so it is hard to comment on the appropriatness of the apartments. All look lovely (the Quincampoix apt did not show up on the website). What I CAN tell you is that all of these locations are spectacular. I've rented on Quincampoix -- it is a lovely little pedestrian-only street full of art galleries and restaurants. #16 is also a small street totally lined w/ restaurants, bars and shops. #17 is a slightly larger street than the others, but not a huge boulevard. All are totally safe. I am a single woman, usually traveling alone and wouldn't feel the slightest bit nervous on any of these streets at ANY time (and I love wandering the streets all night and watching the sun come up from a bridge on the Seine!). #16 is closer to Les Halles, one of the very large metro stations. You can get anywhere from here. The #1 line is also a major east/west line -- a lot of sights are accessible from this line. The #11 line will be less convenient, but not by much! I don't know what other conveniences you might be looking for. There is a small grocery store, fruit/veg stand, bakery, etc. within a block of #17 and #15 (grocery store may be 2 blocks away from #15).

The Marais is fabulous! Very vibrant and colorful and hip, but an area that holds on to its "old world charm" better than many other areas of Paris. It is the gay center of Paris (though please don't be put off if you are not gay -- you'll hardly notice if you aren't looking for it). It is also the Jewish historical center of the city (be sure to walk around rue des Rosiers and get the best fallafel outside of the middle east at L'As and amazing matzo ball soup at the deli).

If you need any more specific info about the area, feel free to ask. It is my favorite area in my favorite city in the world! -Ronda
RondaTravels is offline  
May 3rd, 2007, 04:47 PM
  #4  
 
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Here are my quick thoughts:

#15 – lots of nice photographs, but few photos of overall rooms, etc. This would worry me….

#16 – the sleeping arrangements might be worth it enough for me – in addition to the bed in the bedroom, there are trundle beds. You aren’t forced to use the sofa bed and make that up every morning. Or transfer kids there at night. Or sleep there yourselves. The lack of elevator might be a problem though.

#17 – shower only. Bathroom accessible through bedroom (does this mean when kids are in bed, you can’t use bath?) No elevator. Very cute kitchen area with kitchen table which would be used a lot.

#22 – Love the light and airy feeling of this one, and the top floor. Would definitely use the balconies.

I didn’t take the time to look at locations of each – one thing that was great for us was having Palais Royal nearby – it was our daily routine each night to go jump on the black and white things. Is either closer to a park ? (I'm assuming this is going with kids, right ?)

A few of them look very close to Centre Georges Pompidou – while that area is fun, it also gets a bit overwhelming sometimes. Do you prefer to be in the thick of things or do you prefer to be able to get away from things ?

let us know!
surfmom is offline  
May 3rd, 2007, 07:28 PM
  #5  
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thanks very much for your replies! Some additional info...
The boys will be 7 and 10 when we go.
surfmon - We have tossed around a number of possibilities "city mouse, country mouse" , and have settled on this general area because we want a "city" experience (but still want a good nights sleep!) My husband would particularly like a street view - to feel part of things (i.e. not overlooking a courtyard) but we want a good nights sleep, so these ones seemed to be a compromise of that (quiet or pedestrian street view
We're not too shower/bath fussy - could cope with a "hand held shower in the bath" or with "shower only".
All have dishwashers (don't know how much cooking we will end up doing, but eating always means dishes and dishes <> vacation!)
And I am having the same tossup about stairs vs trundle beds on #16. Having the trundle beds PLUS a sofa bed gives us options if needed. I too love the feel of #22 and the balconies, and the sofa bed looked more futon'y than sofa'y which might be more easily opened and closed.
One thing I really liked about rentparis was that all the apartments have a video that gives a full 360 look around the apartment, which helped flesh out any gaps in the pictures (which has helped my husband's comfort level in the choices!)
By viamichelin, the furthest walk to a metro is 6 mins, and the furthest walk to a 'street market" (at least one on my list!) was 16 mins.
Rhonda - thanks for your message that all the locations (and apartments) are good (spectacular!) And not put off by it being the gay area
Monica - I 'explored' the route of saving a bit more $ (or E) on a smaller place, and while we don't plan to spend much time in the apartment, we concluded that especially with the kids we expect the occasional need for a "downtime oasis" and wanted to pick somewhere that we could breathe in...
thanks so much for your input (sounds like I can't lose, but that there is no "easy" decision!)
Canada_V is offline  
May 4th, 2007, 03:34 AM
  #6  
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After sleeping on it, I think that # 15- 79 rue Quincampoix is going to come of the list. Looking at them all again, that one had the least "visual appeal". I got feedback on a different site that these aren't really "the Marais"... am I using the wrong "label"?
Oh, and Ronda - this will be the first week of a three week France trip - the Paris week followed by a Loire week and then an Languedoc week. And thanks for your 'neighbourhood safety' feedback. I'm hoping for a neighbourhood where at some point the boys could go by themselves to pick up the morning croissants. From what I've read, there aren't any 'go in them at your peril' type neighbourhoods in Paris (esp the Paris we are likely to stay in as tourists!)
thanks again for your help!
Canada_V is offline  
May 4th, 2007, 01:22 PM
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Of course with kids you would need a larger place for your down time. Let us know what you decide and be sure to report back!

Monica
monicapileggi is offline  
May 4th, 2007, 03:31 PM
  #8  
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I think Rambuteau if off now too... so we are down to choosing between #16 for more space (for a bit more money) and #22 for more 'appeal' (i.e. the balconies and the rooftop views). Family decision coming this weekend.
Monica - what are the area markets (or market streets) worth walking (or making our way) to?
Canada_V is offline  
May 7th, 2007, 07:35 AM
  #9  
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FYI - We had our 'family meeting' and have actually decided on one that wasn't on this list Thanks to everyone for their feedback - the general input as well as specific feedback on the apts helped us ask ourselves the right questions! We have booked a small apt on Isle St Louis (www.parisabcd.com) which I found through vrbo when I first started looking. From the various short lists I had put together each person in the family picked the 2 they liked the most and talked about why. The Isle St Louis one "looked cool", gave the kids their own beds, is central, but (thanks to surfmom's 'city mouse/country mouse' analogy!) but not as directly in the 'thick of things' as my other Marais/Beauburg ones (and a few doors down from Berthillion!).
Thanks again for your help (either directly, or in the other posts I've read!)
Canada_V is offline  
May 7th, 2007, 09:51 AM
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My market notes:

Bastille Market – Boulevard Richard Lenoir between rue Amelot and rue Saint-Sabin. Thursday, 7 a.m. to 2.30 p.m., Sunday, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Metro : Bastille. Place Bastille. (one of the best markets around)

4th: Baudoyer Market Place Baudoyer Wed 3 p.m. to 8.30 p.m., Saturday 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Metro : Hôtel-de-Ville

Rue Montorgueil - great street with lots of food shops.


12th Arr (S.E of Bastille): Marché d'Aligre Address: Place d'Aligre, 75012 Paris…. most interesting markets, made up of the covered Marché Beauvau (open since 1777) and an open-air market in the surrounding square with produce as well as flea-market stalls…typically Parisian…cosmopolitan side w/Asian and North African shops located around the market. Tuesday to Saturday, 8.30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. Sunday, 8.30 a.m. to 1.30 p.m. Metro : Ledru Rollin

The brocante at Bastille: May 4-13th; 375 exhibitors; Place de la Bastille, 11 am to 7 pm, open to 10 pm on Thursday the 10th. www.organisation-joel-garcia.fr

Monica

monicapileggi is offline  
May 7th, 2007, 09:52 AM
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PS: There is also an outdoor market on rue Charlot. I emailed parismarais.com and got this reply:

Market des enfants rouge is open from Tuesday to sunday from 9 to 1 every morning.

Monica
monicapileggi is offline  
May 7th, 2007, 01:22 PM
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Follow up comments:
Market des enfants rouge isn't very close to the Ille.

The Ille is a FABULOUS location -- I've rented there before as well. A couple of comments/warnings. No grocery store on the Ille. There are a few very small markets (like a convenience store), limited choices and high prices. But there is a wonderful morning market (I think it is most mornings) across the river (left bank) where rue Monge hits St. Germain. There is also a very nice one at Place Monge. Also very near the Place Monge is the Arenes du Lutece -- it is an ancient Roman amphitheater. You enter it thru a nondescript doorway on rue Monge (opposite side of the street from the Place Monge). There are often boys playing soccer there. It is marked on some maps. If you can't find it let me know and I'll get you the exact location. And the oldest market in Paris is not far from Place Monge, on rue Mouffetard (one of the few open on Sunday). There is also a grocery store on r. Mouffetard that is open on Sunday (until 1) - one of the only ones in Paris.

The Ille is VERY safe and the boys could certainly run out, alone, to get the croissants! Of course, they could have at any of the apts in the Marais as well. By the way, all of those apts most certainly were in the Marais! Quincampoix was the only one on the edge and perhaps questionable.

I know kids can sometimes be picky eaters . . . you won't be able to find a lot of "American" brands in Paris grocery stores (you'll actually have a better choice at the large supermarkets when you are outside of Paris). IF you think this might be a problem, let me know -- there are a couple of places nearby where you can find some "American" brands -- mayo, peanut butter (very hard to find in Paris), popcorn, cereal, tortilla chips (French ones are different), etc.

You can find lists of things going in in the city (or in your area) from the mayor's office (Hotel d'Ville). The big one (for the whole city) is a 5 min walk from the Ille, on the right bank. Enter the Hotel d'Ville on rue Rivoli -- there is a mini-tourist office. Ask at the desk for a list of all of the markets in the city, as well as a listing of "things going on" this week. If there is a long line to get in (the space is shared w/ an art exhibition area and there is often a line to get in to see the exhibit) go to the front and explain to the guard that you are just going in to get tourist info, not for the exhibit. You can also get maps there.

Each arrondissement also has its own Hotel d'Ville. The Ille is in the 4th arrondissement and the HdV for the 4th is a couple of blocks away (east on rue Rivoli) from the BIG HdV. The individual ones can have more detailed info about an area. The 5th arrondissement is on the other side of the river from the Ille. Its HdV is on the south side of the arrondissment.

Here is a link to a cool, very detailed, Paris map that you can move around to find things. I see that the Arenes is on it.

http://www.hot-maps.de/europe/france/paris/homeen.html

A couple of other large parks where the boys can run around and meet other kids: Jardin du Luxembourg; Jardin des Plantes; and, of course the Jardin des Tuleries next to the Louvre. There is also a small park behind Notre Dame, on Ille de la Cite. The front of Notre Dame might be entertaining for the boys in the evening -- on the plaza there are often street performers.

Sorry, I've gotten off topic! I love Paris! Feel free to ask any more questions.

-Ronda
RondaTravels is offline  
May 7th, 2007, 06:00 PM
  #13  
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thanks again for the information!
Monica - I have added that market information to my file. Markets are one of the things on my list "to do", so I'm hoping to check out a variety of them. Now even though we won't be in the thick of the Marais - I am still very much planning to visit those markets!
Ronda - thanks for the tips. Our trip actually isn't until next year - I am glad to have this apartment booked so I can concentrate on finding two more - one in the Loire, and one in Languedoc - for the 2nd and 3rd weeks of our trip! Maybe my kids will have outgrown their eating habits by then! (though maybe not...) I will definitely "bookmark" you (or something and get those answers from you closer to the date (or sooner... or constantly!)
Canada_V is offline  
May 8th, 2007, 05:07 AM
  #14  
 
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Yes, les enfants rouge isn't close to the llle, but close for me.
I plan to visit as many markets as possible!

Glad to read about the tourist office at Hotel de Ville!

Monica
monicapileggi is offline  
May 8th, 2007, 06:53 AM
  #15  
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Monica - my viamichelin "by foot" directions from our apartment on Ilse St Louis to 39 rue de Bretagne (Les Enfants Rouge) says 23 minutes - so for my plans... that's close enough!
Canada_V is offline  
May 8th, 2007, 07:00 AM
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That's great! When is your trip?

Monica
monicapileggi is offline  
May 8th, 2007, 12:19 PM
  #17  
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We aren't going until June 2008 (I felt sheepish about that until I got lots of kindred spirit replies to my "who is planning for 2008" post!) I read enough posts from people saying "liked apartment x, but it is booked" that I wanted to get this out of the way as early as possible! My trip planning style is do LOTS of research, and very little specific planning. Even this far out, my only concern so far is "will a week in Paris be enough"
We will be going for three weeks in total, so I have two more gites to find, and two more areas to research (YEAH!!!)
Canada_V is offline  

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