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Recommendations please: Where should we stay in Paris?

paris postcard

Has anyone been to Paris recently? We are going in October without Milo and are not sure what area to stay in. We don’t mind being a bit further out as won’t be doing the typical sights. Somewhere that’s nice to walk around in, windowshop and have coffee/drink/food.

We went in 2010, from then I remember the area around the start of Canal st Martin being really nice, but that was in the summer, not sure how it’ll be in the autumn cold. I also wish I could remember what area we stayed in back then! Our favourite bar/resto from last time is in Bastille, which I don’t really remember as an area.

I know everyone will say Montmartre, but we actually want to avoid that! It was one of our least favourite parts last time, It’s obviously pretty but so touristy, and we couldn’t find anywhere interesting to eat. I’m happy to be persuaded otherwise this time round, but I don’t want to stay there in case I’m not.

Oh and while we’re here, any recommendations for stuff to do gratefully received!
my personal list so far includes that new cite de la mode museum, and a yarn shop. Dave wants to go back to that massive fleamarket by the peripherique. And that’s pretty much it, so we’re open to suggestions!

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  • Julie 31 July 2014, 11:29 am

    Hello 🙂 I am a big Paris fan and I have a great hotel recommendation for you! I have visited Paris twice in the last couple of years, and more recently this past June. I can highly recommend the Hotel de l’Orient. It offers seriously good value for the area, which is very central – it’s about 5 minutes walk from Gare St Lazare. The hotel is very sweetly decorated and the staff are very friendly. The hotel is located on a very quiet street – Rue de Constantinople – a street which for some reason has a lot of musical instrument and sheet music shops on it 🙂 Also Rue d’Edimbourg is just off this street, which makes this Edinburgh girl’s heart happy. and Anyway, if you have a room which faces Rue de Constantinople, you will have a pretty view (of the Hausmann-style building opposite) and cheery flowers in your window box. When the windows are closed you won’t hear any traffic at all – double glazing. The other time I stayed there my room faced the interior courtyard, which was also quiet, but not as picturesque. The rooms are not big (but who cares, right? You’re in Paris) however they’re all really sweetly decorated. Places to wander around – the Marais neighbourhood is my favourite – lots of little winding streets, excellent bakeries and independent shopping to be perused. Like crêpes/cider/delicious food? Eat at this place – absolutely incredible: http://www.breizhcafe.com/fr-breizh-cafe-paris.html Oh, I just noticed you will be going without Milo. I must recommend this restaurant – Verjus. It’s run by American expats, and it is a fantastic, memorable lovely place to eat. They do a knockout tasting menu. It is not cheap. But I 100% promise you will enjoy it. I loved it – it was fine dining but not at all pretentious, and the staff were genuinely nice. Reservations are essential. Also another memorable thing to do is go up to the Ciel de Paris bar at the top of Montparnasse Tower. It is very close and directly faces the Eiffel tower, so it’s fun to go up at night, have a drink and look at the lights 🙂 It’s a champagne bar, so a wee bit of a splurge, but fun to just go for one drink. That sounds a bit touristy, but I really enjoyed it. I will probably think of a few more things to do, such is my love of Paris.

    • Franca 2 August 2014, 12:26 pm

      Wow, thank you, will check it all out!

  • Julie 31 July 2014, 11:31 am

    Oops sorry – the hotel is actually called New Orient Hotel, not Hotel de l’Orient.

  • Julie 3 August 2014, 4:18 am

    You’re most welcome. Sorry for the long comment… when it comes to Paris I tend to get carried away. 🙂 Have a wonderful time.

  • Jessica 6 August 2014, 6:37 pm

    I just stayed with my husband and nearly one-year-old (but he’s our fourth, so it felt pretty child-free!) on Rue Tournefort, in the Latin Quarter. It was a lovely place to stay, relatively cheap, within walking distance of many places. Rue Tournefort is parallel & next to the busy & quite touristy Rue Moufftard, but it was very quiet and peaceful, you really feel like you are out of the bustling way. The streets around there have rather a medieval feel which we enjoyed greatly. If you are in the area we heartily recommend “Le Petit Leon”, on rue Moufftard; everything we ate there was really really good, and the prices are good too. The place we stayed was at no. 10, couldn’t find it just now but we got there via airbnb, the area was chosen according to a conference my husband was attending but it was a really lovely area.

    • Franca 8 August 2014, 8:13 am

      ooh thanks! We’ve booked somewhere now, in Bastille, but will check out that restaurant. The Latin Quarter is top of my list of places to go because of the new cite de la mode et du design (? that green caterpillary building)

  • Julie 9 August 2014, 1:04 pm

    Just saw this – it might be good inspiration for things to do there:

    • Franca 9 August 2014, 5:31 pm

      Love this blog, thanks for telling me about it!