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The Frustration of Booking a Paris Apartment - Is It Worth It?

The Frustration of Booking a Paris Apartment - Is It Worth It?

Dec 11th, 2006, 04:36 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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dreasf - please post back after your stay at #79965. Would like some more details! Thanks.
blh is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 04:44 PM
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Lately I stayed at VRBO 103254 and VRBO 44176 both in interesting different arrondissements.

The best part is staying in a non-touristy district, with real parisians and real prices. I recommended both.
LuckyLuc is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 04:50 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 10
I share your frustration. We have just rented an apartment in Le Marais for March. We used Paris Attitude. We got the apartment, but the forms and agency and deposit were a bit overwhelming, and we still have to bring the rent in cash. Last January we rented an apartment in Paris from NY Habitat and it was not very clean--the owners live there and left for our stay. The upside is you get a kitchen and a lot of space. But after dealing with the current rental, I am of the opinion that a hotel is a lot easier. I will say that if you find a good place and return periodically it probably becomes easier.
geobono is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 05:08 PM
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samsmom1127 is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 05:13 PM
Join Date: May 2006
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It is worth booking an apartment. We stayed in "Volnay" http://parisperfect.com/ this September. I wanted to be in Paris in September when school started as I just retired from teaching This was a fabulous apartment and terrific service. We would stay there again in a heartbeat. I usually use vrbo but the money transfer was a hassle. Remember sometimes you don't get waht you don't pay for....
jrecm is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 05:14 PM
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oops what
jrecm is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 05:30 PM
Original Poster
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geobono - what you report is a worry - plus some negative reports on slowtrav
The huge security deosits seem outlandish particularly when you consider we blindly trust owners with our money for months ahead of the rental. There appears to be a real need to pick a spot with some kind of recommendation.
Lucky - how do you compare these apartments with the one you rented in the 17th. Was that area just too far from sites etc. Were there plenty of cafes, restaurants, shops, etc
robjame is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 06:52 PM
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Another alternative is an unhosted B&B. Last year we used Alcove & Agape at www.bed-and-breakfast-in-Paris.com and stayed across from Jardin des Plantes in Quartier Latin.Marie-Françoise was the owner/hostess. The studio had a small kitchen area PLUS Marie-Françoise delivered fresh French Roast coffee, croissants, an herb omlet, juice, milk & fresh fruit EVERY morning.The best of both worlds.Also, Marie-Françoise was willing to clean the apartment daily but I generally make the bed and tidy up myself. Drop Francoise Foret a line and she will assist you.
SeymourBaby is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 08:45 PM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,571

That apartment is on the French 2nd floor, without elevator. It's on a lovely courtyard off rue de Faubourg St. Antoine, a very busy street about three minutes east of Bastille by foot. Plenty of restaurants walkable and a friendly cafe-restaurant right outside the door. There's a mix of other shops on the street. Clothing (Gap, etc.) and furniture and home furnishing stores including Habitat (the area is historically the furniture-making center of Paris) abound. Two American style coffee shops, Starbucks and Columbia (?) cafe, an Occitane outlet, an Air France office, and numerous others I can't recall. We live about 100 street numbers farther east on rue du Faubourg St. Antoine (long story about why we needed temporary Paris lodging for a week) so we know the area quite well.
Dave_in_Paris is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 09:11 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 10
We have successfully used VRBO in the US without any problems. However, I don't know if you are aware the Rugby World Cup will be in Paris at that time, perhaps the owner is holding out for a higher price?!?!
11thchild is offline  
Dec 11th, 2006, 09:30 PM
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I used www.beau-paris.com and was very pleased.
irish is offline  
Dec 12th, 2006, 03:53 AM
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I found http://www.apartrental.com/ to be an excellent site to use. I rented a one bedroom apartment in the 5th. Great location, 300 metres from Notre Dame, etc. Try this one
austy is offline  
Dec 12th, 2006, 06:07 AM
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Thanks Dave - We had had blinders on as far as staying in the 12th, but as you and Lucky point out there are certain advantages to being in more residential areas. Will look into this one more closely.
LuckyLuc - I didn't realize that VRBO/44176 and http://www.rentalapartmentparis.com/ were the same apartment. It is one that certainly caught our eye. How did you like staying in the 17th?
austy, irish, Seymour, moolyn, Anselm - lots to follow up on - Thank you all very much.
11thchild - didn't know about rugby world cup - all the more reason to get at it now.
robjame is offline  
Dec 12th, 2006, 07:14 AM
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We have done house exchanges (a whole other undertaking!) and are about to embark on a trip where we will, for part of the trip, be renting an apartment in Paris. You might consider logging onto the Stanford alumni magazine, or Yale or Harvard's--they have a bunch of privately listed rental opportunities in Paris and elsewhere. We're doing ours through one of those and saving some money by renting directly from the person instead of through the agency that otherwise represents the apartment. The owner is local to my area, we have some common friends etc., so it feels comfortable. I am seeing from his recent mailing that the apt. comes with its quirks, but I am looking forward to the prospect of having more than one room to relax/watch French TV in, amidst my other family members. Patrick's preferences make sense to me, though I love hotels. When traveling alone, can't imagine any other way of doing it.

letour is offline  
Dec 12th, 2006, 07:28 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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We recently made arrangements to rent from www.parisianflat.com for late March-early April. Part of my selection of this apt was the courteous and speedy communication over the course of a weekend with Philippe, the references on the units posted on their websites and from other Fodorites on this webiste, many photos available to see, their deposit and cancellation policies were more reasonable than many other agencies, location of the unit, and they negotiated price with me (a bit).
Now only time will tell when we arrive, but I have a good feeling so far.

I had a similar expereince in the USA last summer using a house found on VRBO and everything went great, so I am hopeful that this will trun out well too.

Now I just need the Euro to calm down!
Edye is offline  
Dec 12th, 2006, 08:04 AM
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My only complaint with parisianflat is that we almost rented from them when at the last minute, I happened to mention AC. Since it was July that was very important, and I had stated so in my initial contact with them, a request they then proceeded to ignore. Their places are so upscale and quite expensive so I just thought it was a given. But when I asked again specifically, I found out that no it wasn't air conditioned and none of the other available flats they had were either. I was surprised. We have rented two other apartments that do have good AC for less than half the price of their flats. Admittedly their apartments are beautifully furnished, but I'd think twice if renting in summer (unless you're looking at one that does have AC).
NeoPatrick is offline  
Dec 12th, 2006, 10:37 AM
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Thanks for that comment about the AC. I wondered about AC but decided it was not worth consideration based on our dates of March 31-April 7. I would love to have unseasonably warm temps for our trip!

I certainly hope the unit we selected turns out to be as lovely as it appears!
Edye is offline  
Dec 12th, 2006, 10:42 AM
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I wouldn't worry either about AC for those dates. I was a little disturbed by them telling me that I really didn't need AC at all in Paris even in July. Duh, I've been there plenty and I DO need AC in July.
NeoPatrick is offline  
Jan 29th, 2007, 07:03 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
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Has anyone ever booked an apartment with limaparis.com? They advertise in the Journal Francais d'Amerique which also has various apartment listings? Another service that has lots of apartments is Parisattitude.com. Any experiences with these services?
parissteve is offline  
Jan 29th, 2007, 01:10 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
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The apartment we rented last summer was through ParisAttitude, and everything went smoothly. They act as an agent for individual owners and take a deposit which pays their fee. The balance is paid to the owner on arrival -- at least that's how ours worked. We are renting the same one this year, but directly with the owners. We thought it was a super deal last year -- but even better this year!
NeoPatrick is offline  

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