Weekly Travel Q&A: Paris Hotels and Arrondissements
My partner and I have a lavish anniversary trip to Paris to look forward to this May. Our mission: to wine and dine our way through the city, from baguettes and cafÃ© au lait to foie gras and Sauternes. While we’re not averse to spend a little extra on, say, a box of pÃ¢tisserie art from Sadaharu Aoki, we do want to restrain ourselves in the accommodations department. Modest, affordable and a decent location would all be nice. With that in mind, can you hook us up with some quality hotel and arrondissement/neighbourhood recommendations?
Fay Q., Auckland
A quintessential romantic jaunt in the City of Light … how nice.
Paris hotels truly run the gamut and if ever there was a time to thoroughly research your choice, this is it. Here are some ‘hoods and hotels to consider in the fine French capital.
Pros: Walk in Ernest Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast footsteps.
Cons: The Latin Quarter of Papa and James Joyce’s era is a distant memory.
Hotel Pick: Hotel Parc Saint Severin Paris
Pros: Immerse yourself in the halcyon intellectual cafÃ© culture of Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre at Les Deux Magots and CafÃ© de Flore.
Cons: De Beauvoir and Sartre are at CimetiÃ¨re du Montparnasse and the cafÃ©s are full of tourists, not locals.
Hotel Pick: Le Petit Belloy St-Germain Hotel Paris
3rd and 4th arrondissements
Pros: Tony Le Marais doubles as Paris’ fashionable gay and Jewish quarter.
Cons: Expensive, on the whole.
Hotel Pick: Castex Hotel Paris
Pros: Grand monuments on your doorstep, like the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe and Palais Chaillot.
Cons: Poor in the restaurant and cafÃ© department.
Hotel Pick: Novotel Hotel Paris Tour Eiffel
Pros: The portrayal of Montmartre in Le Fabuleux Destin d’AmÃ©lie Poulain was pretty accurate.
Cons: Seedy and tacky Pigalle is a little too close for comfort.
Hotel Pick: Des Arts Hotel Paris
20th, 19th, 10th and 11th arrondissements
Pros: The childhood home of Ã‰dith Piaf, Belleville is multi-ethnic and artistic, with a neo-residential feel.
Cons: Not particularly flush with iconic points of interest.
Hotel Pick: Grand Hotel Amelot Paris
Pros: Trendy nightlife enclave in the under-the-radar 11th.
Cons: Far from the main tourist attractions on foot.
Hotel Pick: Beaumarchais Hotel Paris
Pros: Provides a coherent glimpse of everyday life in Paris. A part of the city where real people live, work and raise children.
Cons: If your time in Paris is short, you may grow weary of the metro commute to the traditional heart of the action.
Hotel Pick: Prince Monceau Hotel Paris