Reviews on Le Marais area of Paris.

Jan 12th, 2008, 03:59 PM
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Reviews on Le Marais area of Paris.

My family (husband and a 2.5 year old) want to rent an apartment in Paris this spring for our 10 year anniversary. We have one in mind that seems to have everything we need but, having never been to Paris, we are not sure about the area. It is located in the historic district of Le Marais right off Place Des Vosges.
Can anyone comment on this area-safety, transportation, shopping, parks, food markets, etc.? Thank you.
mrsffonky is offline  
Jan 12th, 2008, 04:50 PM
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Relax and enjoy the Marais. It's one of the more pleasant areas of Paris. It's quite safe and accommodating, near the center of the city, with a wide variety of markets and shops. You will enjoy it as much as any other neighborhood. Others can tell you even more specifics.
RJD is offline  
Jan 12th, 2008, 07:21 PM
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You have chosen a wonderful area, don't give it another thought. You will find children playing in Place des Vosges, many boutiques, nice places to eat, beautiful places to walk. We stayed in the area many times, and always felt safe even very late at night.
Margo_Chester is offline  
Jan 12th, 2008, 07:22 PM
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This will knock your socks off.
Travelnut is offline  
Jan 12th, 2008, 07:27 PM
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In my dreams I have an apartment in Paris right off Place des Vosges.

Welcome to my dream.
elaine is offline  
Jan 12th, 2008, 07:40 PM
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I'm sold Thanks for the feedback.
mrsffonky is offline  
Jan 12th, 2008, 09:10 PM
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Just got back from 2 weeks in an apartment in the Marais. We've stayed in several parts of Paris and this was wonderful for our winter purposes, which was basically to be very central. Absolutely loved it! We ended up walking almost everywhere: Bastille, Notre Dame (both islands, actually), Louvre, and just wonderful days wandering the narrow old streets of the Marais itself. Lots and lots of small restaurants, crepe stands, Jewish deli's and bakeries, small museums--just a very intimate and Parisian area. And, as others have said, Place de Vosges is very, very special. And while you're in the park, take a look at the watercolors the few artists around the park have to offer. We've bought a few over the past few years and they bring back great memories at very reasonable prices.

Have a wonderful time!
MelJ is offline  
Jan 13th, 2008, 04:56 PM
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Nobody replied about markets so I'll jump in. (I too LOVE the Marais)
Just east of Place Voges is the Bastille food market held every Thursday. This was always a must when I stayed. I believe the road is BLVD Richard Lenoir radiating from the Bastille circle. Great produce and roast chicken- just get the one where the potatoes have been cooked beneath the rotating chickens, yum!
keb0503 is offline  
Jan 13th, 2008, 05:18 PM
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Considering the cost of staying at the Pavillon de la Reine hotel which is part OF the Place des Vosges I'd say you made an excellent choice.

We certainly thought so the last time we stayed there.
Dukey is offline  
Jan 13th, 2008, 05:21 PM
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Hi, Mrs. F --

We stayed in the Marais for the first time last March.

It was fabulous. Wonderful streets -- lined with great shops, clothing stores, cafes, restaurants, patisseries, art galleries, chocolate stores, olive oil shops, tea shops, and lots of folks -- not just tourists -- hanging out, walking their dogs, buying bread, etc. It was a great vibe, but it still felt very authentic. And we always felt very safe and "at home."

There's a Monoprix right near the St Paul metro stop and lots of other grocery stores nearby.

We loved staying there. We walked everywhere -- despite having two metro stops a short walk away. I think, in 9 days, we rode the metro twice.

And, I love historic architecture, so the fact that the Marais is one of the oldest remaining intact neighborhoods in Paris was highly appealing because it was never demolished and reconstructed in the 19th century.

We'll never stay anywhere else again in Paris. Have fun!

NanBug is offline  
Jan 14th, 2008, 08:11 AM
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MrsF: Can you give us the name or website of the apartment you're considering?
RGTraveler is offline  
Jan 15th, 2008, 12:21 PM
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I love reading all your responses. It sounds absolutely dreamy. I found the apartment at
Thanks again.
mrsffonky is offline  
Jan 16th, 2008, 02:56 AM
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When in the neighborhood, try Café des Musees, 49 Rue de Turenne. Lunch prix fixe of Euro12.50!

Great french fries, chalkboard menu with seasonal dishes. Nearby is the Picasso Museum which you could visit before or after your meal.

For a glass of wine, coffee and people watching, try Au Petit Fer A Cheval. Small and just typical of Paris.
TPaxe is offline  
Jan 16th, 2008, 04:43 AM
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This would be my favourite area of Paris, and I'd love to stay there. My only concern would be traffic noise, but they deal with that ("absolute silence" seems a rather tall order, but it's a pretty definite claim to hold them to). I notice it's up three flights of stairs, which might be an issue for you.

The location, however, is nothing at all to be concerned about, quite the contrary. It is indeed within twenty paces of one corner of the place des Vosges, which is a very posh address. There is a bus passing the front door, which may be a nicer alternative to the Metro for some trips, but it is not too far from Metro stations. You have both everyday shopping at the Monoprix as previously mentioned, and a number of small convenience stores on rue de Turenne, and very chic shopping along rue des Francs Bourgeois. Plenty of places to eat in the neighbourhood.

I don't think I have a photo of that specific corner, but if you visit my photo page at

and start at photo 27, that will give you a flavour of the area.
PatrickLondon is offline  
Jan 16th, 2008, 05:37 AM
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We enjoyed the neighborhood very much. We stayed in an apartment off rue de Thorigny, just down from the Picasso Museum and found it to be quite pleasant and very convenient as we were close to at least 3 metro stops. There looked to be mostly overpriced boutiques as far as shopping, or at least that’s what it looked like to us. We did come across quite a few places to eat at a reasonable price and found what was probably our best dining experience in Paris there. We did however, wake up one night to the sound of intoxicated 20somethings screaming, throwing bottles and jumping up onto the hoods of cars on our street. It made me pretty angry being that they were leaving many of the cars quite damaged. I assumed that this is not typical of the neighborhood but we did indeed witness it. I attributed it to the Rugby World Cup, which was happening at the time. I expected that behavior from the scores of rowdy Scotts that overran the city but these looked to be locals or at least French kids. Of course, nothing against the Scotts, they’re a fun-loving group but seeing them singing and drinking all over the city seemed as out of place as a turd in a punchbowl.
rcasper73 is offline  
Jan 16th, 2008, 05:37 AM
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We have rented this apartment twice, very happily, and while it is not quite at the corner of Rue de Turenne and Francs Bourgeois, it is certainly very close.

It is a great neighborhood, fantastic location, really, and the bus does come very close to the front door with great service to the Hotel de Ville and then the Left Bank -- except on Sunday. The apartment is also very quiet since it is located across the courtyard from the street, with another courtyard behind.

You should be aware with a small child of a couple of things. The elevator is small, and it is a long walk up. You will probably have to do it in two trips. This is a very old building, and the floors, particularly in the second bedroom, are rough and uneven, though genuine parquet. The living room carpet on our last visit was a kind of natural sisal, not good on bare feet or knees. The washer/dryer is as advertised and will be a great convenience for you, but be aware that European and UK laundry facilities take MUCH longer than US equipment. You will want to do it in the evening when your day is over. Much of the furniture in the apartment is antique and semi-antique and if you are a fanatic for perfect dustfree stainless steel and granite, this may not be the place for you.

The owner is an outstanding young man, accomodating in every reasonable way and a useful source of information about the property, the neighborhood, and Paris. Go for it.

I hate to give this information because now the apartment will be permanently booked instead of usually booked!
Ackislander is offline  
Jan 17th, 2008, 03:24 PM
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I appreciate all the detailed information all of you have provided. I am convinced this is a wonderful area. I have never been to France and have always wanted to visit. I now have a 2 1/2 year old and the plan was to wait to travel abroad after her 7th birthday. However, I recently got the travel bug when I read an article in the recent issue of Cookie magazine on how kid-friendly Paris can be. Thanks again.

mrsffonky is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2008, 03:02 PM
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littlehouse is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2008, 03:11 PM
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we've stayed in this flat twice as well, and hope to return next year. i'm afraid it's already becoming very popular!

myself, husband and 11 y.o. daughter could all fit in the little elevator. the cafe on the corner of rue francs-bourgious (sp?), the one with the yellow awnings, became our local and we were always welcomed.

within the place des vosges is a small playground; there's another one around behind the musee carnavalet.

the 96 bus runs right in front of the flat and will take you over to the left bank and back.

have fun!
melissa19 is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2008, 03:41 PM
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Once you enter the Place des Vosges you'll KNOW you made the right decision.
Dukey is offline  

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