You couldn’t get closer to Notre-Dame cathedral (except on a barge on the Seine) at this small, quirky hotel, where high style and a prime location go hand-in-hand.
Decorated in a characteristic collage of chaotically chic colors and motifs by haut-couture-designer-turned-interiors-expert Christian Lacroix, each room is laid out differently—some with low-beamed or sloped ceilings—and each is unique. But all are quite tiny, even by Paris standards.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Street-facing rooms have stupendous views, but can be noisy, as this is a major tourist area. Double-glazed windows mitigate but do not eliminate the problem
Baths are proportionate to the rooms (meaning some are quite small) and equally quirky with regard to shape and size, though fixtures are contemporary and bath-shower combos ample. Robes and slippers are included.
The lobby is basically a reception area, but the breakfast room, on the same floor, serves as a small but perfectly comfy lounge area, where you can have a drink at the bar with your unimpeded views of Notre Dame almost at arm’s length.
YOU SHOULD KNOW A flight of stairs to the reception area and elevator, not to mention quirky spaces, make this hotel impractical for people with reduced mobility.
A buffet-style continental breakfast is served in the main floor breakfast room and bar, though you may not notice what you’re eating on account of the distractingly lovely views.
The hotel is close to the Cité and Cluny-La Sorbonne metro stations, as well as the Saint-Michel-Notre Dame RER station, a direct line to both Paris airports.
With the spires of Notre Dame cathedral as your lodestar, you're really at the center of it all, with stellar views of the cathedral, the islands, and the river. But you're also in the very heart of old Paris, near all the delights of both the Latin Quarter and Saint-Germain, as well as the Marais just across the river.
Though cafés and restaurants abound, a quick walk to Odéon, in Saint Germain takes you to some very good dining indeed, in all price ranges and peopled by Parisians, not just tourists. On the quick and cheap, the Breizh Café Odéon serves up some of the city's best crêpes along with artisanal ciders, and if you don't mind standing L'Avant Comptroir offers an excellent cheese and charcuterie plate with well-priced wines by the glass. Or, you can sit down next door at Le Comptoir de Relais, a superb neighborhood bistro (go at lunch and get there before noon to assure a seat, it's very popular). Semilla is an absolute favorite for its friendly vibe, fresh and plentiful dishes, excellent wine list, and good-value prixe-fixe menu. And Freddy's wine bar, next door, is perfect for a glass of natural wine and small tapas plates (all within 10 minutes of the hotel).
Little Bastards, the Latin Quarter's newest cocktail bar, specializes in gin and infused vodkas, as well as craft cocktails. It's also open till 2 pm–4 am on weekends. In nearby Saint Germain, Freddy's wine bar, serves up meticulously sourced natural wines and delicious small tapas plates for snacking, or you could head across the river to chic Sherry Butt, on the quietly beautiful rue Beautreillis (all within a 10-minute walk).
WHY WE LIKE IT
When it comes to Notre Dame views, this reasonably priced hotel can’t be beat. The décor is admittedly funky, and the hotel seems to be undergoing some renovations, but its spirited atmosphere just adds to the fun.