Paris hotel and neighborhood

Jun 24th, 2012, 02:38 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 14
Paris hotel and neighborhood

Hi, I have been planning my first trip to Europe for quite a while and have booked my stay for London, Amsterdam and Barcelona. I am staying 8 nights in Paris out of which I have already booked 4 nights at the Relais du Marais. I found this hotel at a great price and decided for this neighborhood as it's in the trendy Marais, nightlife, etc. However for the remaining 4 nights I am completely torn.

My wish list:

- close to metro for easy access to attractions and train stations as i plan on doing some day trips out of Paris.

- I want to stay in a lively neighborhood with many cafe's at walking distance and enjoy the true Paris, and avoid the typical tourist traps.

- Safe

- Budget. Preferably under $150 euros, but I am willing to budge for location. Maximum $175 euros.

Should I stick with Marais, try Montmartre, or other neighborhood?

I am traveling with my Partner, we are in early to late 30's, enjoy culture, art, good food, shopping.

Appreciate any help.
EricJoel is offline  
Jun 24th, 2012, 04:12 PM
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well, first, I think you should move hotels to get a change of pace since you'll be there 8 nights. I always do that when I stay that long, as I like to try different hotels and stay in two different parts of town. Montmartre might be fun, I'm sure you know the disadvantages (will take you longer to get to the center). There is lots of nightlife around down near bd de Clichy or Rouchechouart, various clubs, like on rue de Martyrs. I'd also suggest one of my favorite neighborhoods -- Montparnasse. There are lots of cafes, cinemas and people out and about there around the main drags (mainly bd Montparnasse in-between Raspail and rue de Rennes or so, and then check out neighboring streets like bd Quinet for sure, and it is gay-friendly around there, FWIW, with some gay clubs, like the Mix Club and others). In fact, the gay pride parade is starting at the base of Montparnasse Tower this weekend.

The Lenox Hotel would be good for you in that area, but may be above your budget, but depends when you are going as rates can vary during the year, and there are various specials online for many hotels, you could check

The Odessa is in a prime happening spot (which would almost worry me re possible noise), but is popular and cheaper.

Of course there are plenty of metro stops around that general area.

Finally, what are your plans after Paris, I often choose my second hotel place to be close to the method of transporation by which I'm leaving town -- such as the RER, or a train station if I'm going that way or whatever.
Christina is online now  
Jun 25th, 2012, 09:37 AM
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Posts: 4,238
Try this.

Pick your price, location and read the reviews to see if this is where you want to stay.
Rastaguytoday is offline  
Jun 25th, 2012, 10:49 AM
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Thanks Christina. I was initially inclined for Montmartre but its far from the center as you say. Montparnasse sounds like a good place to be in. I will try to explore hotels or B&B in that area. After Paris I am headed to Barcelona for 3 nights and end the trip in Madrid for 4 nights.
EricJoel is offline  
Jun 25th, 2012, 01:02 PM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 291've received some excellent tips-sounds as though Montparnasse will be a perfect location for the 2nd half of your Paris visit.

I am posting mainly to validate your choice of Le Relais du Marais. We had a great experience there 2 years ago. They were just beginning renovations at that time; I'm sure the hotel is even nicer now.

Its location in the upper Marais also gives you excellent access to the Republique area and especially the Oberkampf neighborhood. There's an excellent photo montage on this forum, posted by kerouac, highlighting the nighttime color and vibe in this part of the 11th. Search kerouac's thread history if you are interested.

We're in Paris now, getting a bit cranky from the thought of heading back home in 3 days. So I envy you for the adventure that awaits. Excellent choice of cities to visit, IMO--enjoy the journey AND the destinations !
lifes2short is offline  
Jun 26th, 2012, 03:21 AM
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@life2short thanks for the feedback on the Relais du Marais, I definitely feel more confident that I made a great took me several weeks of research to find a hotel near the Marais that had good reviews, great location and great price!

I am getting more comfortable with Montparnasse for the second part of the Paris stay, the Odessa seems like a great choice due to location and price!

By the way, considering my stay is 8 days I plan on taking some nice day trips, and I wanted to share for your thoughts. 1) I am almost convinced on taking the TGV to Tours, rent a car there, and drive to the Loire Valley and take a tour the Chateaus and drink some wine LOL! 2) taking a high speed train (thalys) through Brussels and do a day in Bruges which by high speed train is not too far, and 3) thinking of doing the Moet tour/day trip but so far the reviews have been so split i am not totally convinced if for the amount of time and money its worth it.....thoughts..
EricJoel is offline  
Jun 26th, 2012, 05:34 AM
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Eight days? Pick no more than two day trips outside Paris. There is SO much that can grab your attention in Paris (usually it has to do with wonderful weather and discovery of a fantastic take-away or a market that supplies picnic goodies) that you may find yourselves "wasting" an entire day people watching in parks, cafes, etc. We always seem to find some kind of political demonstration, or football celebration, or once it was an unexpected mid-century modern flea market complete with art students running around with their sketch pads...that one could never plan for. It's a vibrant city with a busy non-tourist life you need to be there to catch. I'd stay in your Marais hotel for the entire time (you may be able to negotiate a better rate, even!) Head up to the neighborhood around Pere Lachaise. Walk up the Canal St Martin.

In general, do be careful about overplanning your trip! We've been six times now, and always wish we had another day....
uhoh_busted is offline  
Jun 26th, 2012, 05:38 AM
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Have you been to Paris before? If not, don't spend more that one day on a day trip as you'll have lots to do.

If you have been to Paris before and can bear only spending 4 days this time why not take the train to Tours and spend 3 or 4 days in the Loire Valley?
ParisAmsterdam is offline  
Jun 26th, 2012, 07:35 AM
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thanks for your replies. It's my first trip to Paris so I'd rather see stay there the entire time and try a one day trip to the Loire Valley. Maybe when I am back I can try the country side and more time in Loire. My trip to the Loire will be the only one I would plan ahead. The rest would be up to how we feel and the time we have there, in order not to over compromise and really explore Paris.
EricJoel is offline  
Jun 26th, 2012, 07:52 AM
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Montparnasse area is a good choice as that is the train station from which you'll catch the train to the Loire. I stayed at this hotel for a few days last year and thought it was perfectly fine (I had a good off-season rate). As I recall it was just 2 blocks from the closest metro and the train station was an easy walk.
Sidny is offline  
Jun 26th, 2012, 07:54 AM
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I should mention that I was concerned that staying in Montparnasse wouldn't feel "Parisian", since it's a bit further from the center than I usually go, but my fears were unfounded. Other than a few more modern looking office buildings, there's no mistaking you're in Paris.
Sidny is offline  
Jun 26th, 2012, 09:03 AM
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Great hotel suggestions from Christina above. Both the Lennox and Odessa are excellent locations and are in exactly the part of Montparnasse you'll want to be in. That area is also close to a number of Metro lines (though you'll probably be on the #4 line most).
bardo1 is offline  
Jun 26th, 2012, 09:08 AM
Guenmai is offline  
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