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paris - need advice on where to stay, what to see in 2days!

paris - need advice on where to stay, what to see in 2days!

Mar 3rd, 2007, 05:48 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3
paris - need advice on where to stay, what to see in 2days!

I am a newbe to Fodor's. Our family- my Husband (on 2week leave from Iraq, myself and 3 daughters aged (17,15,6)will be traveling in Germany (visiting famuily) and found low airfare to Paris, but can only stay one!! night. we will arrive early am and leave late the following night. We are looking at eifel tower area, or some place close to the major sights. My brother and his wife from Germany are joining us. we need something fairly inexpensive, but of course nice and central. too much to ask? Any recommendations?
pdank is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2007, 07:15 AM
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In June 2005, we stayed at Hotel la Bourdonnais, in the 7th and liked it very much. The Avenue Boudonnais is a pretty tree-lined street, relatively quiet and mostly residential. We had a nice-sized quad room for our family, with A/C and a lift. GREAT view of the Eiffel Tower from our little balcony (room 503).

Friendly front desk, too. Offered a simple breakfast buffet, but we chose to visit Rue Cler in the mornings, for coffee, croissants, crepes and fresh fruit. A nice market next door to the hotel was handy, too, for staples, etc.. Metro stop on the corner, Batobus stop close by, too, at the Eiffel Tower. Even an ATM machine at the corner bank. Loved the location and the upscale neighborhood. An easy walk through the Champs de Mars to the Eiffel Tower.

For our family of four, we paid about $225/night through Expedia. The room has two double beds and is fairly large. The bathroom was 1960s style at the time, but fine for us. The entry way to the room can be closed off and has a two large closets, so it made a nice dressing room for privacy.

Enjoy yourselves and your time together. (Way off the subject-- But, if you remember, could you ask your husband if he's heard of Soldiers' Angels? It's a nonprofit I've been using via the internet, to send packages to "any soldier", like boots, phone calling cards, care packages, etc. I hope it's legitimate!)
Mar 3rd, 2007, 08:17 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 46,082
I like the Hôtel de France on the Blvd. de la Tour Maubourg, also in the 7ème. They have at least one quad room and a couple of chambres communicantes for under 200€. Close to the Tour Eiffel, Invalides, Musée Rodin, etc., and right near métro and several bus stops.
StCirq is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2007, 11:14 AM
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Thankyou for responding to my questions. [Boy, I was in a bigger hurry than I thought!-lots of mistakes ;0) ]Our trip is in 2-3 weeks so I need to get those reservations now I am assuming. I will check into the hotels you have mentioned. Having family size rooms helps! Thankyou for the info. I am also checking into one near Champ du Mars and the Eiffel called Hotel de l'Avre. Recommended here in Fodor's. Have you heard of it? Having kids along, I want them to get a good taste of Paris, yet not tire them out so much that no one has a good time. What would you recommend seeing? Thanks again for the responses!
pdank is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2007, 11:51 AM
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I can recommend one fun and relatively economical way to see Paris for a family, by using the Batobus Pass. The batobus is a 'boat bus' that travels up and down the Seine, and stops at seven of the major visitor areas of Paris.

It's a pretty cheap unlimited on-off day pass. I think we paid 13 EUR per adult for our two-day unlimited Batobus passes. It is somewhat seasonal, so I am not sure about its hours of operation this month, but that would be easy to Google if you're interested.) When we were there in June, it operated until 10 p.m., so we were able to see Paris at night from the Seine, two nights in a row. That's a must-do in my book. But Batobus doesn't run that late every month.

What you might like about the Batobus, also, is that it's glass-covered. So, in case it's raining, or you're tired, you can just catch the Batobus, and have a dry place to sit and watch Paris glide by while you take a break. We used it just like that one day when our teenage son was so exhausted he fell asleep on the Batobus. It was raining, so we rode around the entire Batobus loop once, till the rain stopped. Very inexpensive entertainment for a family, and a much-needed dry place to rest.

You have quite a spread of ages, and I think the 7th would be a good neighborhood for all, if you want a relatively quiet, pretty, and upscale area.

The Champs de Mars is a beautiful and large parkway leading up to the Eiffel Tower, and your 6-year-old could run around a bit if she likes. It's a beautiful picnic place, too. There's the market on the Avenue I mentioned above, where you can get good snacks for the kids, drinks, etc. , and it's about a city block from the Champs.

Also, the 7th is relatively quiet, and you would probably feel safe letting your girls head off on their own for awhile. Very high-end department store shopping is close to the Hotel, as well as tiny food markets on Rue Cler. Your girls could easily walk there and enjoy a hot drink together, on their own.

Your trip sounds very nice. Have you searched this forum for Paris threads? There's tons of good information posted, if you search under 'hotels Paris', 'family Paris', 'walking Paris", etc.

And ask your specific questions here, because someone will know the answer!

P.S. Below are my notes from Paris 2005, including one very nice restaurant recommendation and a tip regarding buying sodas (don't!) :

"Second stop: Paris. Four nights’ stay, first visit for all of us.

Toured Notre Dame, Sainte Chappelle, walked to the second level of the Eiffel Tower, visited the Louvre and the d’Orsay. Walked the Champs Elysee and window-shopped the designer houses. Our daughter did some shopping at Zara there, and our son got some French perfume for his girlfriend on the Champs Elysee, too.

We walked everywhere, but didn’t have time to get to Montmartre and Sacre Coeur, or to the Sorbonne and Latin Quarter. Too much to see in Paris for only three days there.

Had our favorite meal on Ille St. Louis, at Le Caveau de l’Isle, at 36 rue Saint-Louis en l’Isle. Great menu, with a three-course fixed prix around 30 EU. Excellent and friendly service. Small and atmospheric place.

First dinner at Le Champ de Mars on Avenue de la Bourdonnais simply because it was close and we were starving. Good enough food poor service as only two waiters were serving the entire place. Nothing memorable, except the price of an iced tea or cola there is outrageous! The kids ordered one apiece at this first meal, and they were 6 EU for the small size and 8 EU for a medium!! Tried not to make that mistake again. Wine at the same place was only 4 EU a glass."

Mar 3rd, 2007, 12:11 PM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 409
Hi Pdank! Welcome to Fodors. Also, for many inexpensive "suggestions" for Paris, I would suggest that you go to Borders/Barnes and Noble or the like for a guidebook, titled, something like (Insert city name) on $20/day, or something to that effect. The book should be about $20-ish or so, they might even have a book like that in the local library that you can borrow??

Other ways to save money- once checked in to your hotel, ask the front desk where you can find a grocery store- You can get your cheeses, baguettes and WATER at a fraction of the cost. Coca Cola, etc costs about 2-3Euros per bottle (not even the 20 oz bottles like in the US), in the touristy areas, so it can be quite pricey if you like to be fully hydrated!

Near the Eiffel tower is a great central location. Since you are arriving early and leaving late, make sure to ask the hotel if early check in or late check out is an option. Also of note, the Eiffel Tower lights up (sparkles) at night, someone has told me an the hour (?) check with your hotel on exact timings.

I recommend having at least ONE crepe- they are delicious and they are not to be missed!
freeman0819 is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2007, 01:22 PM
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Thanks again everyone for your input. Very good advice. and MaureenB, I will ask my husband about the Soldiers' Angels. I think I have heard of that too. And thank you for your time in answering what to see and do. It is nice to have input that is age specific for the girls from everyone. Like the idea of the bus ride in the rain when we are tired. We are thinking we will try to do a kamakazi visit to Versailles for the earliest short tour on Tues am, then have the aft/eve back in Paris before we head out. Monday see Louvre, Notre dame, walk into Latin Qtr, maybe bus ride around to at least see some of the sites we don't have time to visit. then over to eiffel, arc de triumph, champs elysees, take the Seine river boat ride in eve with lights. Well enough chit chatting---just wanted to say thanks!!
pdank is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2007, 01:46 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 439
You might find it difficult to squeeze in Versailles with only one day. http://www.chateauversailles.fr/

Here is the information on the Batobus http://www.batobus.com/

Here is another hotel you might try: http://www.hotelmonge.com/
Randy is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2007, 01:56 PM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 409
PDank- FYI- at Versailles, currently a large portion of the Hall of Mirrors (about 2/3 of the hall) is being restored. The hall is still beautiful of course, but a few of my friends were disappointed because they "did not know..."
freeman0819 is offline  

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