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Please help me choose between the 4th, 5th 6th and 7th arrondisements

Please help me choose between the 4th, 5th 6th and 7th arrondisements

Feb 28th, 2004, 07:24 PM
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Please help me choose between the 4th, 5th 6th and 7th arrondisements

We are considering apartments/hotels in these different arr. for the end of March. Can someone please descibe what "Le Marais" is? Can you also explain the pros and cons of these different areas?

Currently, we're looking at:

- an apt. on Rue de L'Ecole Polytechnique (5th)

- an apt. on Rue St. Croix de la Betonnerie (4th, Le Marais)

- various hotels in the 7th.

Please guide me with respect to these areas.


Iregeo is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 07:32 PM
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Iregeo, do you have some guide books on Paris yet? I would suggest Access Paris and any other books that might interest you.
If you have a map of Paris, you will see the le Marais (the Marais) is a section of the city..
A cousin of mine stayed in a apt in the Marais last year, no a/c but they loved it. The one problem that I have with it is that I prefer being closer to the Seine, therefore closer to the museums and neighborhoods that I like, which are mostly on the Left Bank.
We have only stayed on the Left Bank, my husband lived there years ago and had a tiny apt near the Sorbonne, so that is where we feel comfortable.
I am sure you will get lots of great advice and encouragement to try various areas, wherever you stay, it will be wonderful I am sure, after all, it is Paris!
Scarlett is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 07:35 PM
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Thank you Scarlett. Can you tell me a bit about the neighborhood Le Marais?
Iregeo is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 07:54 PM
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Not too long ago there was a post here that gave a link to a site describing all the Paris arrondissements. You might be able to find it by using the search engine; there was a lot of useful information.
Underhill is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 08:04 PM
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Underhill, I found it earlier today and I'M GOING NUTS because I can't find it now! Any help will be greatly appreciated.
Iregeo is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 08:11 PM
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Was it THIS site?


What's a good match for you depends on YOU -- your age, political outlook, temperament, sexual orientation, etc.

FWIW, I stay in the 6th.
Robert_Brandywine is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 08:14 PM
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To refine my question, I think I am most interested in learning what these respective areas are like at night. I will be travelling with my sister-in-law, and at night, I am assuming we will want to stay "in our neighborhood", so it must be safe, not too loud, etc. I am hoping for part residential, part local cafes, bistros, and walkable at night. Does this help at all?
Iregeo is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 08:26 PM
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Iregeo, my guess is that if you post a selection of addresses for the hotels and apartments you are considering, it is easier to tell what is best for you from that, than it is by just giving the arrondisement number.
WillTravel is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 08:32 PM
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WillTravel, my initial post gives the street of each of the apartments. I haven't listed the hotels because I do not yet know if they are available. Can you tell me about the streets mentioned in my original post?

Adrienne, thanks! There it is!
Iregeo is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 08:45 PM
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The Marais is just one neighborhood of Paris. Most central areas of Paris have some kind of historical name attached to them to indicate the neighborhood (St-Germain, Latin Qtr, etc). I guess you know where it is -- on the Right Bank, straddling the 3rd/4th arrondisements, the Place des Vosges is one famous landmark it in. The older Jewish Quarter was in this area, as well as some famous historical "hotels pariculier" (one of which houses the National Archives and another the Musee Carnavalet). The name means "swamp" but that was drained about 10 centuries ago. It had gotten run-down but there started being urban renewal which really brought it back as a trendy area -- I forget when that started, maybe 15-20 years ago.

It has its own web site, if you want to read some about it www.parislemarais.com. I think there are others that probably give a better description of it historically than that one, actually, such as this:

The streets seem rather small and narrow in the Marais -- I"m not that big a fan of it myself as a place to stay, but I know others like it a lot. I haven't stayed there so maybe it's just because I don't know it so well. Part of it I think of as sort of an antique shop area (around St-Paul). It is very close to the Seine, however, but I'd guess you have a map on that to see.

Really, I think any of the areas you named would be perfectly fine to stay in -- they are all very central, clustered on the Seine, and all safe enough. I guess the 7th is a bit off there, and it kind of an elegant residential area and home to embassies, govt building, and it more spread out with more space than the Marais. A lot of American and British expats frequent and live in the 7th.

I really think any of those areas in themselves are fine and wouldn't worry about it. The specific addresses within those arrondisements would concern me more, as well as generally if the apt. is to your liking and the price. I generally like the area around rue Ecole Polytechnique (although I can't visualize that exact street), but I'll admit I don't find that location as convenient for public transportation. It's closest to the Maubert metro stop, but that has only one line which runs E/W, so it's not as convenient as an area with a couple metro lines going various directions. There isn't any bus line either, so you'd have to go to bd St-Michel or elsewhere for that, I think.

There was an article in National Geographic magazine not too long ago about the Marais which gave a pretty good sense of the place, if you want to check your library (it was probably within the last year).
Christina is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 08:48 PM
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lregeo, sorry I missed the street addresses in your first post.

I don't know anything personally yet. You might already have these pages, but here are some tips for the first one:


Some descriptions of the area of the second one mention the lively gay bars on the street, so you might want to check you have good soundproofing.

Have you tried putting the address in at http://www.pagesjaunes.fr and then using the tool that comes up in order to navigate the neighborhood and see what it looks like?
WillTravel is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 08:51 PM
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lregeo, another thing I am doing is using www.mappy.fr to calculate pedestrian routes (mostly for a gauge of distances) between where I would stay and major tourist sites, and using http://www.ratp.fr to determine public transit routes between where I would stay and major tourist sites (mostly in terms of time).
WillTravel is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 09:02 PM
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Christina and WillTavel, thank you both. Very helpful.
Iregeo is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 09:21 PM
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We've stayed in the 4th, 5th and 6th. All were quiet, busy and pleasant with one tiny exception. One year we just happened to be in Paris for the Fete du Musique and were in the 6th (would have been the same anyplace) and ended up with a rock band across the street from our hotel until about 1:30 AM. Since we were leaving for Chartres the next day, we really wanted to sleep. Oh well. We knew there would be music all over town, but I guess we were hoping for a string quartet across the street. No such luck.

The 5th is in the Latin Quarter and you will find lots of cafes, the university, museums and easy access to Metro stations and major tourist sites.

The 6th is right next to it and still quite close to tourist sites with plenty of Metro stations. There are plenty of cafes and restaurants.

The 4th is the Marais (no longer a swamp) and is where you will find the magical Place des Vosges, arguably the prettiest square in Paris. The Picasso Museum is in this area. Again, you will find plenty of cafes and restaurants.

You need to check (as advised above) the pages jaunes to see what the area looks like. If you have an apt. over a busy bar or restaurant, you will have noise to the wee hours . . . probably not a good thing. If you are a bit off the beaten track, it will be quiet.

We prefer the Latin Quarter (5th) near the university because it is easier to get to the things we enjoy visiting and it's a neighborhood where we enjoy evening walks.

Any of these neighborhoods will be safe and most likely will be attractive. It's hard to go wrong in Paris. It's a lovely city. The neighborhoods are different in character, but they are the same in that you will find shops, markets, busy squares, good food and public transportation. I don't think you can go wrong.

Have a good trip.
SalB is offline  
Feb 29th, 2004, 06:50 AM
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Any of the areas you are considering would be wonderful places to stay. We stayed in the Marais last fall and loved it. Not far from the Seine, several museums in walk able distance, we were close to the St. Paul metro, lots of cafes, boutiques and pastry shops! We walked at night and always felt safe. We return we plan on staying in this area again.
grantop is offline  
Feb 29th, 2004, 07:06 AM
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Iregeo, a friend stayed in the Marais at a hotel, she wrote a trip report here. I will see if I can find it, it is written by Beatchick. She loved the area, and describes it well.
My favorite is going for a day on Sunday, lunch near the Place des Vosges and then browsing the wonderful boutiques and shops..snacking on things from the delis that are open .. it is good because things are open on Sunday here where they are closed in most of the city..but remember-Saturdays most things are closed in the Marais.
I am not sure how much is happening in the nights, and it requires a train ride to get to the Left Bank, Louvre, etc, which always discouraged me from staying there.
Look into the 6th & 7th...personal favorites
We have stayed on the Ill St-Louis, which is a perfect place. We stay on the rue Jacob now-right off Blvd St Germain..
What a lovely dilemma, where to stay in Paris
Scarlett is offline  
Feb 29th, 2004, 07:12 AM
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BEATCHICKS Trip Report...enjoy!

Scarlett is offline  
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