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Another first timer looking for input

Conway, New...
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Another first timer looking for input

I'm in the initial planning stages for a mid-May trip to Paris - my first! I've done several searches of the forums for hotel suggestions and info about each neighborhood, and am beginning to narrow things down. I know there are a thousand posts out there already from first timers wondering where to stay, but I'd love to get specific input.

I am 38 yr old and traveling with my Mom shortly before her 60th birthday. We don't need luxury, but cleanliness and patience with my feeble attempts at French are a must. I'd much rather stay at a smaller family-run hotel with character than in a standardized chain hotel. Proximity of metro stations is a definite plus.

We're more likely to spend our evenings soaking up the atmosphere strolling through the streets than hanging out in a bar or club. I would love to be part of bustling neighborhood with street markets, cafes, boutiques, etc. We're not really fancy 4 course meal kind of people, either - just good food in interesting surroundings.

So far, I like the sound of the Rue de Cler neighborhood and the central location of St Germain. If we stay around Rue de Cler, would we need to take the metro to the museum and historic districts? Or is it walkable?

Our budget is under $250 USD per night.

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1. Re: Another first timer looking for input

You will need the metro from Rue Cler. And Rue Cler is not bustling at night.

Try the Hotel Millessime in the 6th. A great little hotel, it is perfectly located on the Rue Jacob, walking distance to a zillion places you can soak up atmosphere, and walking distance to many sights.

Les

Pjk
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2. Re: Another first timer looking for input

I just booked the Hotel Millissime for a second time on a 6th trip. Look at their tete-a-tete package on their reservations page.

Pjk

Conway, New...
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3. Re: Another first timer looking for input

I love the look of the Hotel Millesime, but mixed in with the glowing reviews, I found 2 reports of unauthorized credit card charges and 2 reviews about last minute cancellations. I have to admit that these reviews, while greatly outnumbered by positive reviews, have me a little spooked.

Other hotels that look promising:

Madison Hotel

Clement St. Germain - is this part of a chain?

Crystal Hotel - I'm under the impression that they are undergoing some renovation/remodeling?

Hotel de Colleges de France

Hotel Saint Thomas d'Aquin

My head is spinning, but I'm so excited about my first trip to Paris!

nashville
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4. Re: Another first timer looking for input

try the Hotel des Grande Ecoles in the 5th -- Rue Cler is a loser IMHO and we once spent 5 days there --

either the Marais, the Latin Quarter or even the 6th is better -- Latin Quarter puts you in evening strolling range of Notre Dame -- and Notre Dame at night may be the most magnificent sight in the world -- in my top ten anyway (Angkor Watt is also up there -- Notre Dame is in that league) and this is a bustling area with good metro connections and lots of great stuff within a walk

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5. Re: Another first timer looking for input

Well, keep in mind that almost every hotel will have some sort of bad review. And also sometimes bad reviews are fake, by the competition.

My rule of thumb is to look at the average review, dumping the most glowing and the worst.

Victoria, Canada
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6. Re: Another first timer looking for input

Rue Cler is in a dead area at night. I wouldn't stay there with your wish list. Rick Steves is wrong on this one( and yes, I like Rick Steves) .

Stay in 5th ( Latin Quarter) or 6th ( St Germain) .

Look at websites for "

Hotel du College de France

Hotel Grand Hommes

Hotel Eugenie

Hotel des Ecoles

Hotel Albe

Hotel Le Regent

check reveiws but go for consesus, there is always an odd one out( either really good or bad) .

And don't be afraid to stay at a lower rated hotel, I stayed at the Hotel Brigton 3 yrs ago. It was then only a 2 star,, and cost me 160 euros for a view room with two balconys.

Now it is a four star with rates for same room and time of year starting at 230 euros,, yikes, and it has rocketed up the tripadvisor list, from a three digit listing to a two digit listing. Listings are not just about how good a place is, it also counts how many times place has been reviewed, so a great hotel may be lower on list only because it only has 1/2 dozen reviews and none of them bad.

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7. Re: Another first timer looking for input

Also look at Henri IV Rive Gauche on r. St Jacques. The location cannot be beat and the reviews are glowing.

Illinois
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8. Re: Another first timer looking for input

I can't exactly vouch for it because I haven't stayed there yet, but my daughter and I will be staying at Hotel Varenne in the 7th in March. It gets great reviews here, and their website looks nice. Right in your price range.

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9. Re: Another first timer looking for input

Dear pixiedustgirl

We have stayed on Rue Cler several times and loved it. I know that it seems to get a bad press from other posters but I think thier expectations are influenced by somebody called Rick Steeves (whom I've never heard of). Each to thier own view.

We loved being in the centre of a bustling market street, people watching. Rue St Dominique runs across the bottom of Rue Cler which is full of boutiques,shops and some nice looking budget Hotels. Hotel Varenne as mentioned above is one of them where I collected a brochure to keep for future reference.

As we are 57 and 67 we are usually ready for bed around ten pm after walking round all day, so we don't need night life. There are plenty of cafes and restuarants around this area and we usually ate locally around seven to eight pm We didn't think it was dead at night and enjoyed strolling around. It was a bit quiet on Mondays when a lot of places where shut.

The metro station ar the top of rue Cler is Ecole Militaire which will take you directly to the Madeline and Opera, where the big department stores are. It's easy to get to anywhere else from there.

The Invallides, Eiffel tower, Rodin museum. Orsey museum are all within walking distance.

Bon voyage

Conway, New...
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10. Re: Another first timer looking for input

Thanks for the input, everyone!

I think I've settled on the St. Germain area - it just seems sooo central for easy walking to see the town.

On the map the Luxemborg area looks far from the Seine, but I have a feeling that's just because of the scale of the map. There sure are some nice looking places in that area. Seems like more for the money than on Rue Jacob and the surrounding area right on the Seine. Views of the Seine and the sites (especially at night) would be lovely, but I'm thinking many of the smaller hotels may not be tall enough for views anyway.

Can you tell I'm an overthinker?!? lol

Really, I'll probably be happy wherever I chose to stay, the decisions just drive me crazy when I'm planning on behalf of other travelers.