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Please share personal experiences on Paris apartment rental

Please share personal experiences on Paris apartment rental

Apr 1st, 2004, 05:44 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 3,944
Please share personal experiences on Paris apartment rental

My husband and I are thinking seriously of renting an apartment in Paris for a month or more in 2005. There seems to be ample info about sites that rent apartments here, but I am interested in personal accounts. Would those of you who have done this please share info about costs, comparisons to simply renting hotel rooms, your favorite rental agencies and even the specific apartments that you've stayed in. We'll be in Paris for a week this April and I'm wondering if I can actually scout out a couple of places. Thanks so much for any information you can provide.
JulieVikmanis is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 06:21 AM
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I did it once and it was an OK experience..some folks (you'll hear from them soon, swear by it).
Costs: depends on the alternative...can be cheaper or more expensive than a hotel, depending upon the cost of each. Renting an apartment is not necessarily cheaper than renting a hotel room.
I disagree that renting an apartment allows you to "learn how the locals live"...you can do that without renting one...the locals know that you are renting, especially in Paris...although if you are renting in the right place it might foster some conversations. Living like the locals takes more than just occupying space IMO.
It is a great idea if you like more room than the usual hotel room provides and you require NONE of the services a hotel might provide, including housekeeping.
I'm not the least bit against it but when I'm on vacation having hotel services available are of higher priority. Have a great trip.
Apr 1st, 2004, 06:47 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,749
Hi again, Julie. I've been renting a "flat" in London for years now, and swear by it. It is a fraction of the cost of a nice hotel in London. Paris is different however, and for years I swore I wouldn't rent an apartment there as there are nice very reasonably priced hotels. But last year we did rent one for a week and are renting the same one this year for a twelve days (they give 10% discount for a minimum of 12 days). But our apartment comes out to about $180 a day. I couldn't find a hotel with a fraction as much room or comfort for that price, but I could easily find a nice hotel I'm be pretty happy with for that price, unlike in London.

The kitchen means little to me. While I like to cook, I'll be damned if I'm going to cook in Paris. And why even make coffee when I can step out the door and get great coffee? I do use the refrigerator for juice, maybe some cheese, and love having ice cubes!!

The main advantage (and this is a major advantage) is the room. Now when we go to Paris, we tend to spend a little more time relaxing in. And it is so much nicer to have an actual sofa and comfortable chairs instead of having to sprawl across a bed to watch TV or relax. One can stay up and watch TV (did we ever do that?) or read or write and not disturb the other. And our apartment has a ton of storage space. It is so nice to walk into our "dressing room" and take things out of closets or drawers instead of living out of a suitcase for a week.
It is also wonderful having our own washer-dryer in the apartment. And I like NOT being disturbed by the maids

A down side is I find less personal interaction. At most small Parisian hotels I've stayed in, I've become familiar with the staff, and on our way in or out we always chat about where we're going, where to have dinner, etc. There is none of that in our apartment, for whatever that is worth. I rarely pass other residents in the hall or elevator.

By the way, I've found that few agencies on the internet offer much of discount for a month stay (other than maybe a 10%). There are small agencies within Paris, however, who will do furnished rentals with a one month minimum at much better rates than most of the places I've seen on the internet. You might spend some time while there seeking out one or two of those agencies and seeing if you can strike up a relationship that will help you find a place for next year. The one thing is, these are often not rentable for a single month that far in advance, so you would need to confirm which one you would be getting closer to the time you go. It is hard to say how comfortable I'd be with that situation unless I felt they would still have a pretty good inventory of availability.

By the way this is the apartment we rent -- a single one, owned by a US owner with whom I deal directly. He has a person in Paris who meets us and handles problems should any arise.
Patrick is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 06:57 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
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We just rented a 2 bedroom apartment from parisholidayapts.com. The owner is a Canadian expat, so communications in English are easy. The apartment was very affordable ($200 per night [could have slept 6 or 7] but with the delcine in the dollar, he's now quoting his rates in Euro). The apartment wasn't fancy or glamourous, but it was exactly as shown on the web site - no unpleasant surprises.

For a family with 3 kids, it would have been a big pain for us to have gone out to breakfast every morning...it saved lots of time and money (and was a bit of a comfort) to have cereal and milk and yogurt, like at home. I really like having a fridge whereever I stay, even if I don't "cook." (Note: I did miss the cafe au lait, however, that I would have had every morning if I had been in a hotel.)

If you plan to cook (which I bet you would if you rent for a month) check out the kitchen carefully. Our unit had a microwave and a stove top, but no oven. That suited our purposes, but obviously there are some things we could not have cooked.

The washing machine was a combo unit (washer and dryer in one machine) and was tiny, but we were still able to pack lighter because we could do laundry.

It would have been nice if someone would have come to take out the trash every day, but the benefits of having an apartment outweighed that inconvenience.

Being in an apartment did not enable us to visit with the local residents...we saw one other resident, the whole 9 days we were there. However, shopping for groceries, etc. did make us appreciate the urban life a bit more than if we had been in a hotel.

If you rent for an extended period of time, try to find out where the closest large grocery store is. (Monoprix is shown on the Paris map guide.) The adorable tiny stores in the neighborhoods are quaint but costly (kind of like buying all your groceries from 7-11)...it's not so adorable to pay $6 for your small box of Special K.

As much as you may love your husband, I'd recommend an aparment so the two of you could be in separate rooms at some point.
missypie is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 07:03 AM
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I rented an apartment from rentparis.com for six nights last year. We paid around 130 euros per night for their apartment number 2, a one bedroom apartment in the northern reaches of the Marais. Since my husband and I were traveling with our teenage daughter, it was much more pleasant than a hotel room for the three of us.

While we didn't do any cooking, we did enjoy bringing in prepared foods, wine, cheese, pastries, bread, and fruit. When we have stayed in hotels, we have always been tempted by the things we'd see in the markets, and having our own kitchen really gave us a chance to indulge ourselves.

We found Rentparis very easy to work with, no security deposit required, no minimum stay, and an agent available by phone for questions at any time. The apartment was very thoroughly equipped, much more so than an apartment we rented this year in Rome.

The added space, privacy, and convenience really sold me on apartments vs. hotel stays. It is not important to me that my bed gets made and my towels changed, and I easily gave up the services of the hotel for the luxury of an entire apartment.
Nikki is online now  
Apr 1st, 2004, 08:01 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 507
Last year we rented from www.parisperfect.com.
We were extremely pleased. They are expensive, but our group of 6 would have needed 3 hotel rooms. Do a search on them.
janeg is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 08:09 AM
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We have rented twice from rentparis. I recommend them. We stayed in the marais both times. Overall wonderful experiences.
opaldog is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 08:17 AM
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HI Julie,

I rented from ParisPerfect last year as well and was very happy with the experience. We were a group of four in a two bedroom apartment with a kitchen, living/dining area, two WCs and two bathrooms. We had everything we needed to cook (we had breakfast and some dinners in)and a washer and dryer. It can be pricey but for us I think it worked out to E65 per night per person (that was when the euro was closer to E1=$1)which was much better than we could have done in a hotel for that much space. I would absolutely do it again!

Patti is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 08:21 AM
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Before you rent (for a month), overlay a metro map with a detailed map of the city. Some metro lines are very convenient to lots of places you're likely to want to go. Others aren't. Also, if you just glance at a metro map, you may think that some lines intersect, when they actually don't. Do a LOT of neighborhood research before signing up for a month.
missypie is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 08:27 AM
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We rented an apartment in Paris for a month, in the 16th arrond. It was a 2 bed/2 bath apartment and we paid $2000 for the month (including all uts. except long distance phone calls). The decor was ok, acceptable, not superb (if you rent in the moderate or lower end, expect to see a LOT of Ikea furniture and housewares!). We rented privately from the American owner of the apartment and she gave us a break for renting the entire month off season (March). She normally charged $2000 a week for high season (the French Open tennis tournament, for example, since the apartment was within walking distance of the venue).
The good: it was fun having the extra room, we had lots of visitors, and our kitchen had a separate washer and dryer, not the combo unit you often find in short term rentals. The neighborhood was terrific, off the beaten path but served by several metro stops and had a twice weekly food market that was MUCH better than the rue Cler (along with several nice stores, a Monoprix, restaurants, cafes, etc.). We never spoke with anyone else in the apartment building except the gardienne--we meet more people in a hotel.
The bad: our apartment was on the ground floor (rez de chaussee, or RdC), which meant rolling down ALL the security blinds EVERY time we went out, even if it was a 10 minute run to the grocery store. That got annoying.
The ugly: be VERY careful about apartments in the lower price category, esp. if you find them on FUSAC or somewhere else. Anything that rents below 1000 euros a month in a good neighborhood is probably dodgy at best. A few months ago, I checked out a supposedly "very nice" one-bedrooom apartment in the 7th advertised in FUSAC. What a dump!!! A thick coat of cat hair over all the furniture, the "fully equipped" kitchen was a hot ring with two burners, a battered microwave, a tiny sink and equally tiny fridge (and I am used to small European kitchens, this was furnished by the Easy Bake Oven co.), the bed had a sagging, lumpy mattress, the living room sofa was an ancient brown futon, the shower had both rust and mildew, etc.

For a month or more, an apartment does make sense, as long as you shop VERY carefully. I would NEVER rent an apartment for my first trip to Paris (but that's not your case).
Happy hunting!
BTilke is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 08:55 AM
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Thanks so much to all of you for sharing your very helpful insights. Interesting that a couple of you point out that staying in an apartment diminishes rather than increases your opportunities to interact with locals/others. As I've searched websites I've also found for myself that prices aren't necessarily cheaper than hotels unless you're shopping for more than one hotel room--which we aren't. Lots to think about. Thanks for your help.
JulieVikmanis is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 11:24 AM
Join Date: Dec 2003
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Check out www.vrbo.com ...go to France and Ile de France for a wide range of places available. This will give you an idea what is there and how to communicate with the owners. You can also get back on this site to ask about locations if you are not familiar with areas of Paris.

I have rented and I have stayed in lovely hotels. It is a matter of preference....if you like to some cooking in, then an apartment is certainly helpful. For longer than 2 weeks, I would think an apt. would be prederable.

You can possibly arrange to see some that interest you on your next trip.

gracejoan is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 11:32 AM
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One thing I just thought of is computer and internet access. If that is important to you and where you will stay doesn't have it, you might want to make sure there is a cybercafe nearby. (We waw them in places where young people/student congregate, like the Latin Quarter.)
missypie is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 12:53 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
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Before making a final decision, check the website: chezmichelaparis.com. We rented Michael's apartment (the loveliest gentleman to deal with) for a week last May. In addition to being centrally located (7th, bordering the 6th), it is deluxe in every way, truly. There is a Monoprix, boulangerie, cheese shop, and excellent restaurants on the same street, making it very convenient. I must agree with previous posters, however, to say that we did not see any "neighbors" during our stay. Nonetheless, my husband and I would definitely rent this flat again. In fact, we can't wait to do so.
elsiejune is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 04:42 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
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We are renting from www.private-paris.com an apartment in Latin Qtr for 10 days in May. So far, the manager has been responsive to emails but we have not been to the place.

The hotel we stayed in 2 yrs ago was very nice but for a longer stay we would like an apartment for extra space.
CaTraveler is offline  
Apr 1st, 2004, 05:36 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 735
I had an excellent experience dealing with Pascal Zytomirski.

Here are the apartments he rents:

One bedrooms :
75 Bd Malesherbes, 4 people, in the 8th district, Madeleine Opera area, Metro St Augustin
24 rue des Vertus, 4 people, in the 3rd district, in Le Marais, Metro Arts et Metiers
11 rue de la Huchette, 4 people, in the 5th, Metro St Michel in the Latin quarter.

11 rue Duvivier, Studio for 2 in the 7th district, MEtro Ecole Militaire.
24 rue Xavier Privas, Studio for 4 in the 5th district, metro St Michel, in the latin quarter
37 rue de la Harpe, Studio for 4 in the 5th district, metro St Michel in the latin quarter

You can email Pascal at [email protected]

Pascal acts as the rental agent for all the owners. He will meet you at the apartment with the keys after you arrive in Paris.

I rented the apartment at 11 rue Duvivier and was very satisfied. Apartment rentals work best if you are staying longer than a week. My apartment was quiet and totally modernized with a washer/dryer. The cost was much less than a hotel room would have been for a lot more space.
LaurenSKahn is offline  
Apr 4th, 2004, 03:56 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 1,762
I rented from rentparis.com (on Nikki's advice) and was thrilled with the experaince!! After renting, I doubt that I will stay in a hotel again!! Try it!!
seafox is offline  
Apr 4th, 2004, 04:15 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I also rented from Paris Perfect and ohmygosh. It was exquisite and Parisian in every detail. I took my mother who has a bad knee and she could sit in her room every night and gaze at the Eiffel tower right outside our living room window through lovely French doors. It was so worth it to spend a little more and not be cooped up in a tiny room with all her pills. (she had her own bathroom). The price was more than a moderate hotel, but not more than a pricey one. We could get groceries across the street, a rotisserie chicken right downstairs, crossed the street to bus 69 which takes mom everywhere she wants to be AND above ground so she can see everything along the way... so so wonderful. ( btw, I love the metro, but she couldn't handle all the stairs and walking between trains) Cafe's everywhere...ah. I miss it so much. I would rent again in a hearbeat.
petal is offline  
Apr 4th, 2004, 04:30 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I rented from rentparis.com in 2001 (after friends had rented the same apt) one month for $1650 and was extremely please with the service. The managers were always available and the owner fixed a problem within 1/2 hr. You can't beat their prices (as far as I can tell). I rented a studio which is adequate for two at 11 rue Duvier one street over from rue Cler. They have several in the Marais area which I would consider. I think you just have to decide how much you want to pay. I'd be happy to answer any questions. [email protected]

I don't think there is any comparison to renting a hotel room for a long stay. With an apt you have a kitchen which can be really nice for eating in occasionally or often. Granted they only clean/change linens once a week but what do you do at home? Rentparis also provided flowers every week. I can't wait to do it again
nancy is offline  
May 19th, 2004, 04:58 AM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 6
Got back from Paris on 5/18.
The www.private-paris.com rue Mouffetard apartment above expectations.
The rental manager provided great service and lend us a laptop for the apartment's ADSL internet accesss on a Sunday.
-triple our previous Paris hotel rooms' space
-Nice decor
-comfortable bed (only American double size)
CaTraveler is offline  

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