Go Back  Fodor's Forum > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page > Paris Aug 15 with 2 teen boys - looking for Apt rental ideas.
Notices

Paris Aug 15 with 2 teen boys - looking for Apt rental ideas.

Reply

Nov 29th, 2014, 05:17 AM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 341
Paris Aug 15 with 2 teen boys - looking for Apt rental ideas.

We're visiting family in the Netherlands in July/August and I want to take our kids to Paris for a week or so during that time.

Prefer to stay in an Apt. rather than hotel, unless small hotel. Which area (Arondessement?) would you look into?

Boys will be 12 and 14 and we all love markets, walking, parks, museums - being in the thick of things but not super touristy areas for staying, We enjoy putting down roots and getting to know an area as much as you can in a week.

Thanks for any ideas on where to stay and if you have any "must sees", would love them!

Thanks!
Weespxx is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 29th, 2014, 06:15 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,649
Get the kids some student type guide books and let them do some research to see what places THEY are most interested in seeing. This worked well with our DDs - 11 and 14 - on their first trip to London and Paris. Also assume you won;t be joined at the hip every moment - get them used to the Metro and do some exploring on their own. Our DDs loved the Cluny Museum and visited it twice while DH and I explored some galleries (not their thing).
nytraveler is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 29th, 2014, 10:16 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 11,579
If you're staying a week I would make certain the apt has air conditioning, or check reviews regarding windows/fans/breeze etc. Are you looking at 2 rooms if it's a small hotel, or trying to find a "suite" to fit 4 persons?
clarkgriswold is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 29th, 2014, 11:54 AM
  #4
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 20,187
As the city of Paris cracks down more and more on private apartments for rent (like NYC did), you should be very careful in your dealings with any agencies since a huge number of the apartments are likely to become unavailable by next summer. "Aparthotel" chains like Adagio or Citadines propose legal rentals.

As for "small hotels," I would say that 90% of the hotels in Paris are small hotels, generally with no more than about 30 rooms.
kerouac is online now  
Reply With Quote
Nov 30th, 2014, 08:53 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 660
Make sure what you rent is a legal rental. As kerouac points out, Paris is now cracking down on illegal rentals through sites like Airbnb, etc.

Check for 'aparthotels' using Google or look at registered Gites here: http://www.gitesdefrance.info/paris.HTML
Sojourntraveller is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 30th, 2014, 11:42 AM
  #6
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 50,346
if you want your lads to meet some real parisians, how about a B&B? I know that they are not as popular in France and probably Paris as they are in the UK, but they are a growing market - there are 134 of them on TA, but i have to say that many of them do not look like B&Bs to me.

worth a look though!
annhig is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 1st, 2014, 10:31 AM
  #7
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 660
For B&B type accomodation you should look at Chambre d'Hote.
http://translate.google.ca/translate...r/&prev=search

Note, there are listing sites which say they are offering Chambres d'Hotes but are not. If the host does not live there and does not both welcome you personally and include breakfast in the price, chances are it is an illegal rental yet again.
Sojourntraveller is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 1st, 2014, 10:36 AM
  #8
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 20,187
Having once been a teenager, I myself would not at all have liked to be in a B&B situation. Many teenagers tend to seek more privacy (anonymity), so an apartment would probably be best, followed by a standard hotel.
kerouac is online now  
Reply With Quote
Dec 1st, 2014, 01:32 PM
  #9
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,640
I agree, I don't like B&Bs as an adult, and I'm not sure many of them are regulated, either. I think adults (and older ones) like B&Bss, not teens. Kids can meet "real Parisians" on the street or in the metro, for that metro, not to mention at some tabac playing video games, or hanging out where they are skateboarding, going to a park, or just walking in the congested areas where kids are (I stay in MOntparnasse and tons of kids are in the cafes there, at least teens, although 12 is a bit young for that). Kids don't want to become best buds with old people.

I was also going to add what kerouac did, the vast majority of hotels in Paris are small, so that's no problem.

I don't know that young teens love markets, but I'd recommend the 4th or 11th arrondisements to be a bit cheaper and not as stuffy, or the 14th but you won't find many apts there, most likely.
Christina is online now  
Reply With Quote
Dec 1st, 2014, 03:06 PM
  #10
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 50,346
Having once been a teenager, I myself would not at all have liked to be in a B&B situation. >>

i can't imagine why, our kids seemed pretty happy with the ones we took them to and didn't object to our booking others; DS struggled a bit at the communal breakfast table in Pampol but his french improved! it' s not a matter of "becoming best buds" [vile phrase] with old people but having the opportunity to mix with french people in a social setting which is not that easy to arrange when you're on holiday. [how DO you meet real people on the Metro for goodness sake? or expect kids just to start talking to each other in Montparnasse? Those kids are there with THEIR friends and are unlikely to be interested in some random foreign teenagers].

anyway, it was simply an idea which the OP may investigate or reject as she chooses, as she knows her kids a lot better than any of us do.
annhig is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 2nd, 2014, 08:26 AM
  #11
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 660
Some B&Bs have a separate entrance to the guest accomodation and complete privacy other than at breakfast. The days of walking through someone's living room to a bedroom next to their own are past in many cases. To me, that's just about doing your homework to make sure the place suits your needs. No different than looking for a hotel that doesn't still have a shared bathroom down the hallway from your room and yes, those do still exist too.
Sojourntraveller is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 2nd, 2014, 11:38 AM
  #12
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 20,187
There are plenty of those in my neighbourhood in the 40-50€ category -- and yes, they have plenty of foreign tourists in them. But you cannot find them on the internet because they don't have websites.
kerouac is online now  
Reply With Quote
Dec 2nd, 2014, 06:19 PM
  #13
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 571
We have used parisautrement.com for the last 5 or 6 years. The apartments are all located in the Marais-3rd and 4th arrond. I prefer upper Marais, a little less touristy. 10th around canal st. Martin is also very nice and will have a lot less tourists. I don't think Airbnb is going away. Check for apartments on that. We are using them for Barcelona apartment. I think apartments are a godsend when you have kids. The extra room and having a kitchen is great and preferable to a single hotel room.
macdogmom is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 3rd, 2014, 10:19 PM
  #14
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 571
Thanks for the advice. I'm been contributing on Fodors since 2008, but increasingly find that instead of a friendly exchange of information one gets lectured to.

There is a current trip report that is very interesting and full of the poster's great experiences on Airbnb. It's a similar service to VRBO. Is VRBO now a forbidden resource?
macdogmom is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 4th, 2014, 05:11 AM
  #15
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 50,346
macdogmom,

it is of course no-one's business but your own where you stay and what sort of accommodation you book.

I'm not sure about the difference between VRBO and airbnb except that VRBO [I thought] is privately rented houses and apartments, whereas airbnb certainly started off as staying in people's homes i.e. more like a traditional BnB. but I suspect that there is quite a lot of cross-over.

the real danger of course is that you turn up to find that the accommodation is no longer available because of local crack-downs but it's possible that that can happen anyway, and IMO is far more likely [though in itself very rare] to be the result of fraud, rather than illegal letting.
annhig is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 4th, 2014, 09:26 AM
  #16
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 428
VRBO is a listing site that just sells advertising, and so do the other companies under the HomeAway umbrella - Homelidays, Arbritel, BedandBreakfast.com, as well as other companies in the US, Great Britain, Singapore, Spain and Australia. They will just refer you to the person you rented from, if there is a problem.

People can claim to be owners, but there's no verification process. Before VRBO was bought by HomeAway, the majority of clients actually owned and managed their properties. Now anyone can list, as long as they pay the fee, and you have no real way of knowing who the owner is.

There is a problem with listings that state "see my other listings" or "go to my website for further information" - often, these are people managing multiple properties for foreign investors. These are some of the main sites that are being targeted by the City of Paris.

Anyone who accepts full or partial payment in cash is likely to be operating an illegal rental, and should be avoided. This includes AirBnB, VRBO or listings from any other site.
manouche is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 4th, 2014, 10:42 AM
  #17
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 660
Macdogmom, you are free to do as you wish. I see no reason to become annoyed if someone points out that since the advent of Airbnb, things have changed. Before they came along, there were some illegal rentals but nowhere near the number there now are.

Absentee owners who own/rent multiple properties for the sole purpose of then renting them out by the night have multiplied exponentially and that is why it is becoming an increasing problem in many places.

While someone renting illegally can write a great trip report about how much they liked the places they rented, it doesn't change anything. It simply presents a selfish viewpoint and gives no thought to what the neighbours think about having people coming and going as if it were a hotel. A hotel that they did not choose to live in but now do.

One owner renting a room in their house is not the same as 25% of a small apartment building turning into holiday rentals in the space of a couple of years which is literally and without exaggeration what has happened in many cases. Try thinking about how you would feel if it were your home.

Most consumers do not realize that there is anything illegal about it and do not look at it from other than their own viewpoint. A travel forum is an ideal place to make it known that there are others to consider besides ourselves. Making you or anyone else aware of that is not 'lecturing' it is informing. So where is the problem?

The antagonism towards being informed isn't hard to understand. People don't want to know that what suits them personally may be impacting other people adversely. It means they have to find excuses and self-justify their actions once they know.

Personally, I have a problem doing business with a company (Airbnb) who KNOWINGLY help people break the law. In the case of Barcelona, they require anyone renting to tourists to have a license. How hard would it be for Airbnb to ask for their license before accepting a listing? Why would they not do that? Can you think of one good reason? Airbnb does not have the excuse of saying, 'we didn't know it was an illegal rental'. They KNOW.

So as I said, if someone knows that a company is KNOWINGLY profiting from illegal activity, what does it say about someone who then chooses to continue to do business with them? I'd like to hear your answer to that question macdogmom rather than focusing instead on whether you are being 'lectured' to or not. I'd like to hear whether now that you have been informed of illegal rentals in Barcelona, you intend to make sure the apartment that you rent there is a legal rental.
Sojourntraveller is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 4th, 2014, 11:51 AM
  #18
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 4,119
Sounds like a lecture to me ....
Peter_S_Aus is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 4th, 2014, 01:54 PM
  #19
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 50,346
I'd like to hear whether now that you have been informed of illegal rentals in Barcelona, you intend to make sure the apartment that you rent there is a legal rental>>

do you have any tips for macdogmom [or anyone else for that matter] as to exactly how s/he should do that? ask to see a the advertiser's proof of ownership? proof that they pay their local taxes? I can tell you that as the owner of a holiday home, I would not look kindly on a potential guest who wanted to inspect our land registry documents.
annhig is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 5th, 2014, 02:45 AM
  #20
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 428
I don't know how things work in Barcelona, but in Paris, just submitting proof of ownership and tax documents would not mean a rental was legal. Asking for this proof could be considered an invasion of the owner's privacy, and could also be easily falsified by anyone with a computer and a decent printer. How would the average person know, especially if written in French or Spanish legalese...?

Some people have mentioned that their preferred agencies have filled out the forms and completed the permit process to become legal - well, it's a whole lot more involved than that, which is why most people can't or won't do it. Just buying up a bunch or apartments - or even all of them - in a building is not sufficient.

The process to become legal involves changing the entire building's tax structure to commercial status. This means that all the residents must agree to pay commercial tax rates - much higher than normal rates, and not within the average person's budget. In addition, the person who owns the rental must construct a dwelling of the same size or larger, somewhere in Paris. Even if this dwelling is built in the suburbs, where it's cheaper, it still involves a lot of time and money. When the work is completed, and the tax status has been verified, the owner may apply for a permit to rent short-term, but there is no guarantee that it will be approved. That's how the system works in Paris.

HomeAway/VRBO is actually to blame for the world-wide rental explosion, which began in 2006. AirBnB just jumped on their coat-tails, and increased the market by encouraging a "Craig's list" approach to people who wanted to sublet to make extra money. Both companies look the other way, regarding how owners accept payment. All they do is list property and collect a fee for doing so.

If there is any "bad guy" in this situation, it's the owner who rents knowing he is breaking the law. Plain and simple - there is nobody else at fault. The client who rents an apartment is an accessory to the fact, but as of this date, the renter is held blameless, like a prostitute's clients are.

The Mayor's office estimates that there are more than 25,000 illegal rentals in Paris. That's just the ones they have discovered so far. The majority of them are concentrated in the Marais (3 + 4 arr.) and the Latin Quarter (5 + 6 arr.), followed by the Eiffel Tower area (7 arr.).
manouche is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:19 AM.