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Where to stay in Paris for our 1st time there?

Where to stay in Paris for our 1st time there?

Old Sep 21st, 2016, 10:06 AM
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Where to stay in Paris for our 1st time there?

Hey guys,

My boyfriend and I are going to visit Paris for the 1st time in november and we can't decide where to stay. So many arrondissements, so many things to see. We'll be there for 4 1/2 days and we would like to visit as many attractions as possible (Eiffel Tower, Musee d'Orsay, Louvre, Notre Dame Cathedral, Sacre-Couer, Champs-Elysee, Luxemburg Gardens, ...) but we also like to wander on the streets, people-watch and find a place to have something to eat and drink at the end of the day.

A friend recommended to stay near Champs Elysee, other sugested Le Marais and another one swears by the area near the Eiffel Tower... Basically, we have no idea were to stay.

So far we've kinda narrowed it down to the Latin Quartier, 5th/6th/7th arr. and the areas near Champs Elysee/Eiffel Tower/Le Marais (because of the recommendations), but I'm not really sure these would be the best places for us or which one to choose.

We are in our early 30's, our budget would be about 145USD per night (lower if possible - for hotels, air bnb or youth hotels with private rooms), we don't mind walking, but I'd rather to stay near a station and we would prefer an area that has some kind of night life (nothing too wild) where it's safe to walk around after 10, 11 pm (I'm freaked out by walking empty streets late at night).

All help is appreciated!
thalitamd is offline  
Old Sep 21st, 2016, 10:23 AM
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I'd recommend staying in the Latin Quarter or the Marais.

If it's your first time in Paris, you should book a hotel, so you can rely on the reservation staff to help you with directions or reservations, if you need them - and you probably will. Ask for a good map that has a Metro map as well.

I would avoid AirBnB and vacation rentals, because most of them are illegal, and most importantly, you will be left alone to figure things out. If you arrive before your room is ready, you'll have to haul your belongings around for a few hours. You'll also have to clean the place before you leave.

There are many reasonably-priced hotels in both the Latin Quarter and the Marais. Look for Postal Codes 75005, 75006, 75003 and 75004. Transportation will be convenient in any of these areas.
If you arrive before your room is ready, the hotel will hold your luggage for you and will allow you to freshen up in the communal toilettes. Tourism is down by around 28%, so you should not have trouble finding a nice place.
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Old Sep 21st, 2016, 10:31 AM
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There is a good hostel - MIJE - in the Marais, right close to the Seine, and a Continental breakfast is included:
https://www.mije.com/en/auberge-jeun...ris/fauconnier

In the Latin Quarter, this is a good hotel with free WiFI and free access to a fridge, coffee/tea kettles, microwave, fax and printer.
http://www.hotel-saintandredesarts.fr/en/

Both locations are very convenient to transportation and you can easily walk to most places you'll want to see.
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Old Sep 21st, 2016, 10:38 AM
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5th Latin Quarter
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Old Sep 21st, 2016, 10:51 AM
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Frankly, it doesn't really matter much where you stay as long as you have easy access to a metro station. The Latin Quarter and Le Marias are both interesting neighborhoods. I admit I don't especially like the area right around the Eiffel Tower, nor would I recommend staying on the Champs Elysees.

I agree you do not want to use Airbnb or other rental agencies. As mentioned virtually all of the rentals are illegal, and staying in a hotel or hostel means you have support staff available to help you, as well as being able to check in and leave your luggage when you get there.

Enjoy your trip!
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Old Sep 21st, 2016, 11:46 AM
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Not only are most of the rentals illegal, the Paris government is starting a crackdown on these illegal apartments. So you might find your reservation suddenly cancelled -- at the last minute.

And, as a general rule, for a first time visit to a city, it's best to stay in a central hotel with a front desk to give directions, recommend restaurants, etc.
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Old Sep 21st, 2016, 12:02 PM
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It matters to me because I prefer to walk places as much as possible. I don't like having to use public transportation every time I want to go somewhere, in a city I'm not familiar with.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2016, 09:12 AM
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I dont know why some say That airbnb is illegal in Paris, neither why You Will be left on your own. A friend of mine is renting a studio close to his appartment and brings breakfast every morning.
I am very biased because living close but I like 17th Batignolles. Lively, a lot of bars restaurants but still local village atmosphere. Not too far from Montmartre and Champs Elysées
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Old Sep 23rd, 2016, 10:42 AM
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Rouelan : lots of threads on the subject inc one running now where I tell everybody they are thieves if they rent illegal apartments.
Basically, do what you want, but don't tell you don't know and if you have problem (possible but not big risk now) don't complain.
And don't tell me you rent illegally.
Plize.
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Old Sep 24th, 2016, 12:01 AM
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Dear whoinparis,sorry but I dont like your post at all.
I dont like You call my friend a thief.
I dont understand why you say That airbnb is illégal.It just take 2 mns to google "mairie de Paris airbnb" to check the do and dont.
And I can read between the lines that you insinuate I am a liar and doing so to promote my own business.
Check my posts if you wish. I have nothing to sell, just give away my knowledge of France and, because I travel a lot, I am pretentious enough to think that I have a reasonable idea of what tourists could like ir dislike
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Old Sep 24th, 2016, 03:46 AM
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Try the Hotel du College de France. It's in the 5th but very close the 6th. Very good value although it's near the top of your budget. Good public transport links, but nearly everything is walkable from there.
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Old Sep 24th, 2016, 05:50 AM
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Check out the Hotel Bonaparte. It's a favorite of another Fodorite and their low season rates are in your budget. GREAT location that I love.
https://www.quickbooking.eu/BOL/en/1...onaparte/rates
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Old Sep 25th, 2016, 04:51 PM
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I'm really confused about AirBnB legal status in Paris and London... I've used it in a few states in USA and had problem with only one of them (my 1st time in NY when it got cancelled 4 days before my arrival), after that everything went well, but I gotta say I feel discouraged reading aboyt it being illegal and I fear another "last minute" cancellation.
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Old Sep 25th, 2016, 07:27 PM
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I recommend the Bastille or Oberkampf area. More of a younger vibe there, cheaper prices, but still good restaurants...
I think almost anyplace in Paris is close to a metro station.
We stayed at Citadines Bastille-Marais, an aparthotel, and it might be within your budget (especially in November) for a studio apartment - and there's a 24 hr desk downstairs, breakfast area, etc. Staff all courteous and speak English well, close to a metro stop, and walking distance to the Marais district.

Everything I've heard/read about apartment rentals in Paris - I would NOT rent from airbnb or any apartment rental agency. If you want an apartment, stay at an apartment-hotel (aparthotel) like the Citadines. There are a few others.
Go to trip advisor or booking.com, put in your budget and any other amenities you need, neighborhood you want, and READ THE REVIEWS.
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Old Sep 25th, 2016, 10:35 PM
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Well for your budget I would suggest an apartment rental in the Latin Quarter, Marias or even the Canal St. Martin area.
As for hotels, having the concierge is great for hard to book restaurant reservations. I'm claustrophobic and Paris hotel rooms can be tiny - I like to have a kitchen to prepare breakfast so an apartment is ideal.
Booking.com is great for a "legal" apartment hotel rentals if these Fodor's crazies are scaring you out of airbnb or other rental sites - although I've never had a problem with last minute cancellations, raids, etc...
I'm in Paris 4-5 times year for business and mix it up with apartments & hotels only if I'm staying less than a week.

Good luck!
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Old Sep 25th, 2016, 10:57 PM
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The apartment situation is changing in Paris, and there are several reasons to not rent an apartment for your first trip here.

First, you'll have to spend a lot of time trying to find out whether the apartment is legal - people will tell you what you want to hear, but it's also possible that their apartment will be pulled off the market at the last-minute because it is, in fact, illegal.

Second, if you arrive before you can get access to the apartment, you'll have to haul your belongings around - possibly for hours, and no fun in bad weather. This is probably the main complaint from people who rent. You will also have nobody to help you if you need directions or advice, and if something breaks down, repairs often take a long time. You'll often have to stock the apartment with paper products and, of course, food and drink, and will be responsible for cleaning up before you leave - all of which takes time away from your limited vacation.

It would really be better to choose a hostel or inexpensive hotel on your first visit. The 5th, 4th or 3rd arrondissements are the most convenient for transportation, and there will always be people walking around, even late at night. These are probably the safest areas for a first time visitor.

The areas around the monuments - Champs-Elysees, Eiffel Tower, etc, are probably the most dangerous, especially for pickpocket activity. I wouldn't recommend staying in these areas.

If you choose a hostel or hotel and arrive before your room is ready, you can use the communal toilettes to freshen up, drop your luggage and go explore the city. A hostel or hotel will hold your luggage if you have a late flight, too.

Just to let you know - an empty street in Paris won't hurt you. It's empty. Everybody has gone home because the businesses on the street have closed. Nobody will jump out of a doorway and harm you. It's possible that somebody will be trying to sleep in a doorway, but this person won't be interested in bothering you.

In November, it gets dark in Paris around 5 PM. Many people work late - past 8 PM - and go out for drinks and dinner afterwards. There will be lots of people on the Metro and on the streets at least until midnight.

Here's some more suggestions - many have special prices if you choose the non-refundable option:
Marais:
http://www.castexhotel.com/en/
http://hoteljeannedarc.com/en/offers.html

Latin Quarter:
http://www.hotel-saintandredesarts.fr/en/
http://odeonhotel.fr/
fuzzbucket is offline  
Old Sep 25th, 2016, 11:00 PM
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"fuzzbucket on Sep 21, 16 at 11:31am
There is a good hostel - MIJE - in the Marais, right close to the Seine, and a Continental breakfast is included:
https://www.mije.com/en/auberge-jeun...ris/fauconnier "

OMG, it's still there? One of my closest friends, to this day, and I stayed there in the summer of 1975, I think it was. I remember that they locked us all out most of the day, to clean the place daily, and then let us back in in the evening. There was also a curfew as the front door was locked at a certain time and if you missed the curfew, then it was sleep elsewhere.

My friend and I had a private room on the top floor and our own private shower and a shared, hallway toilet. The floors below us were rooms with lots of bunk beds. There was no hot water so we showered in very cold water and the water was timed some kind of way and also turned off part of the day. We all ate breakfast at long, wooden tables on the first floor before setting out for the whole day. I think we paid less than $10. a day. We were still university age back then and after the last final exam, here at home, would pack our bags and head for LAX to catch a really cheap, $375. or less rd.trip charter flight to Europe. LOL!

"In the Latin Quarter, this is a good hotel with free WiFI and free access to a fridge, coffee/tea kettles, microwave, fax and printer.
http://www.hotel-saintandredesarts.fr/en/"

And I've also stayed at the above one,too. I had a shared hallway toilet, but a small shower in my bedroom. I stayed at that one in the summer of 1990. Although I'm still going to Paris, my accommodations are now different. Smiles.

Happy Travels!
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Old Sep 26th, 2016, 05:36 AM
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Guenmai - things have changed at MIJE. I see people coming and going pretty much at all hours, so no more curfew, being locked out, etc. The communal table downstairs is still used for serving breakfast.
I know people who have stayed here - old and young - and they were happy and had hot water!
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