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In a panic - need apartment in Paris May 23-30 - begging for help

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Mar 16th, 2013, 09:58 AM
  #1
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In a panic - need apartment in Paris May 23-30 - begging for help

I'm clearly a novice at trip-planning and didn't realize it would be so hard to book accommodations with only two months' notice for high season in Paris. Begging for help!

I'd like an apartment that will hold 3 people in a single-digit region of Paris. Convenience to buses and Metro is good, but I will have my niece and mom, and so safety, safety, safety is of utmost concern.

I do have a hold on a Vacation in Paris apartment near Rue Mouffetard, but I'm very nervous because it is a ground floor apartment, and I'm very worried about safety. It's apartment #142 (link below):

http://www.vacationinparis.com/apts/id_142.htm

VIP doesn't have anything else for those dates. I checked out Paris Vacation apartments and again everything is booked.

I feel like such a dummy! Grateful for all suggestions, advice, leads....

Les Lapins
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Mar 16th, 2013, 10:10 AM
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It would help to know what your budget is and if you can use a 1 bedroom with a pull out sofa in the LR (so 2 of yuo will share a doubled bed in the BR)?

Separately - if this is your first trip are you determined that you must have an apartment? You might find more availabiity in hotels.

As for a ground floor apt I would not one anywhere without gates on all of the windows - but I'm from NYC and our building has had break-ins due to idiot sub-tenants leaving gates and windows open.
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Mar 16th, 2013, 10:19 AM
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Check out www.airbnb.com -- with "8,000 listings for Paris" you should be able to find one....rated A by Conde Nast Traveler w/ no minuses
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Mar 16th, 2013, 10:21 AM
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I stayed here with my two sisters and Mom in November. It may work well for you.

http://www.vrbo.com/237796
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Mar 16th, 2013, 10:40 AM
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"It would help to know what your budget is and if you can use a 1 bedroom with a pull out sofa in the LR (so 2 of yuo will share a doubled bed in the BR)?"
I absolutely could do a 1 BR. I guess my budget is that I would be willing to spend up to $2,800 or so for 7 nights. I would prefer not to go above that, but again...safety first.

"Separately - if this is your first trip are you determined that you must have an apartment? You might find more availabiity in hotels."

I actually was having such trouble finding available hotel rooms that fit 3 people, that I switched to apartments on the recommendation of a friend.

"As for a ground floor apt I would not one anywhere without gates on all of the windows - but I'm from NYC and our building has had break-ins due to idiot sub-tenants leaving gates and windows open."

Yep. The apartment I put the hold on doesn't have bars. I would feel a bit exposed. Maybe if there were a man staying with me, I'd go for it, but three women, and my niece is so small...I'd feel like a real potential target.
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Mar 16th, 2013, 10:46 AM
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I got this on email: http://paris.citycosy.com/uk/paris
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Mar 16th, 2013, 10:50 AM
  #7
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jmc714, thanks for this lead -- this looks lovely. I am going to message the owner right now and see if it is available.

aliced, I will also check out airbnb.com, the A rating sounds really promising.
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Mar 16th, 2013, 11:18 AM
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honestly, it looks like a lovely apartment and whilst we get a lot of posts and indeed threads here about the various scams that tourists are subjected to whilst out and about in Paris [and elsewhere] i do not remember any about break-ins into apartments, ground-floor or otherwise. We stayed in a ground -floor apartment in Rome and the only thing that i thought was thank goodness i hadn't got a load of steps to walk up!

that said, if you are going to be nervous every time someone walks past the window, it's not going to be a very relaxing holiday, so perhaps it would be as well to find somewhere else.

hotels like Novotel often have three-bedded and/or interconnected rooms.
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Mar 16th, 2013, 11:53 AM
  #9
 
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$2800 for an apartment for three for a week seems a lot.

Don't stick to one agency, whether vacationinparis or any other.

We are spending about $1000 for an apartment for two through VRBO (where we have always found our Paris apartments), and our time overlaps with yours. There were lots of other good ones available in that price range at the beginning of March, so there ought still to be places available at somewhat more.

My wife is a real estate genius, whether buying, selling or renting, though it was not her primary profession. She works at it hard and systematically. She never looks for perfection, merely the best available at the price, so she never gets hung up as so many others on this site do. I am incredibly lucky.

The process: scan a site you are comfortable with until you find five places that are acceptable in price, location, and size. Are they available for the time you want? If not, repeat at another site until you find five.

Look at the details: high floor, low floor; stairs or elevator; street facing or courtyard facing; nearby, bakery, grocery, bus, metro, eating places; access to/from airport or railway. How will you get the keys? When can you get in? Who pays for cleaning? Utilities? Put all this information on a grid. What matters most? Don't agonize, make an offer. It's only a week.

We are willing to walk to the first (US second) floor but not beyond; we want the bedroom to be on the back or courtyard side of the building; we want a washing machine and are used to European ones and their workings; a shower is more important than a bath but not a deal killer; we prefer buses to the Metro, so a good bus line is more important to us than a convenient Metro; and so forth. See? that's how it works!

Then just do it!
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Mar 16th, 2013, 12:12 PM
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good advice from Akislander.

make a list of the things that are essential [in your case, not ground/first floor and in a "safe" area, two bedrooms, etc. etc.

then a list of things you'd like but aren't deal breakers,

then a list of things you won't accept - ie ground floor.

i'd be very surprised if you can't find an apartment to suit for your dates with almost 2 months to go.
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Mar 16th, 2013, 12:33 PM
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We had good luck through Paris Best Lodge
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Mar 16th, 2013, 01:15 PM
  #12
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Very good advice, and thank you. I do see some availability on Parisaddress website, the photos certainly look good and folks on this site seem to have had luck with Parisaddress.

VRBO looks like a great site, and would love to use them, but how do I know the owners are legit? The site seems well regarded though. I guess that's the one thing I am confused/nervous about, even though I certainly could do well there. I apologize for what may well be paranoia!
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Mar 16th, 2013, 01:55 PM
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VRBO looks like a great site, and would love to use them, but how do I know the owners are legit? >>

well, you look at the reviews and see what they say, but in the end, it is a bit of a leap of faith - but then so is renting through an agency [they may fob you off with a different apartment or it may not be clean] or staying in a hotel, if you think about it - how can you guarantee the honesty of the staff, the cleanliness of the kitchens, the provenance of the food?

even staying at home has its risks!
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Mar 16th, 2013, 02:39 PM
  #14
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"even staying at home has its risks!"
Touche!

So, I have another question. I'm considering a couple of apartments through Parisaddress, but I noticed on the lease there is a 3,000 Euro refundable damage deposit. Is that really right?? No way am I plunking down 3,000 Euro. Does anyone know?
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Mar 16th, 2013, 02:41 PM
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I have used Paris Best Lodge several times and also highly recommend them.
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Mar 16th, 2013, 02:46 PM
  #16
 
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I've paid a €300 deposit in Italy - which was returned in full at the end of the let with no quibble but €3000 deposit seems vv high.

i'd think twice about renting through them.
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Mar 16th, 2013, 03:18 PM
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You sound ambivalent about the apartment.....

Hotel Au Manoir on Blvd St Germain, is a perfectly nice hotel, in a very good and super safe location. We stayed there once when my husband was in Paris on business. I just checked your dates and they have 1 triple room left for those dates.

If they do, then maybe other hotels do as well.....

Needless to say, in a hotel w/24 hour desk personnel, safety becomes one less concern.
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Mar 16th, 2013, 03:31 PM
  #18
 
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I've used vrbo and homeaway.com a number of times and have never had a problem. Someone mentioned that you should check out the reviews, and I agree and agree and agree. I will not stay anywhere that doesn't have a number of reviews.

My husband and I are booked in a studio in Paris next month, and we're paying 450 euro for 7 nights in the Marais (3rs-4th). I didn't have to give a deposit to book. Actually, I've had to give deposits (minimal) at only two of the seven places we're staying this spring.

Good luck!
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Mar 16th, 2013, 03:57 PM
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Your budget seems generous. Parisperfect.com has very nice apartments and because of the Paris Perfect recommendations on this website, we used Londonperfect.com last month. We were very pleased. Quite good service, no hitches, and a very nice place in a great neighborhood. I know it was London, but I was so pleased that I would recommend the agency to you.
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Mar 16th, 2013, 04:29 PM
  #20
 
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A hotel may give you more peace of mind and services for your group than an apartment. If one of you does not feel like going somewhere, at least you know they can be well taken care of in a hotel during your absence. Suggestions and recommendations are welcome when you are a newcomer to a city.Even coming home late at night if this is your first time in Paris might feel a little strange compared to a hotel.

I hope you find what you are looking for

Here is a list of hotels that offer triple rooms

http://www.tripadvisor.com.sg/ShowTo...de_France.html
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