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Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

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Bournemouth, United...
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Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

I'm looking to book a holiday to Paris with my boyfriend in December. But there is so much choice I don't know where to start. I enjoy staying in places with a lot of atmosphere, where you can step out of your hotel and there are restaurants and bars in a short walking distance. We would want to go to the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, luxembourg gardens etc in the day and also enjoy the hustle and bustle activities that go on at night.

We aren't looking to spend loads of money on a hotel. Where would you suggest to stay that isn't over priced, easy accessible to tourist attractions and has a good nightlife atmosphere?

Paris, France
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16,696 posts
20 reviews
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1. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

As StCirq suggested on your other, now closed, post you might like the area near the Bastille or Oberkampf.

san francisco
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1,768 posts
29 reviews
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2. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

Hi Chelsea, If you like lively, stay in the Latin Quarter. It is my favorite. I stay at the Esmeralda across from the Notre Dame. If you stay there make sure you get a view of the Notre Dame. Read the TA reviews first to make sure this is a place you will like. It is not for everyone. Only those who want a certain atmosphere. Have a great vacation.

Le Bugue, France
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14,097 posts
5 reviews
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3. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

<< It is not for everyone.>>

Boy, is that an understatement! I'm surprised it stays in business. What a horror!

Paris, France
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6,833 posts
118 reviews
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4. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

I actually spent my honeymoon at the Esmerelda, in the room with the perfect view of Notre Dame. That was eons ago, and except for the view, it was like something out of a very bad, very old movie. And it was expensive, too!

A friend insisted on staying here last year, but after one night, moved to our couch - so I guess it hasn't changed much. No disrespect to sfjam, but I would recommend finding a decent hotel with a comfortable bed, and gazing at the same view from the little square at St Julien-le-Pauvre, right next door.

Paris, France
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25,245 posts
32 reviews
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5. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

I would go with Bastille/Oberkampf, including the newly renovated République area.

Dallas
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1,396 posts
11 reviews
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6. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

Try Hotel Dieu across from Notre Dame plaza.

san francisco
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1,768 posts
29 reviews
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7. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

I love the Esmeralda, but I do recommend it with caution. Like I said, it is not for everyone. Yes, it is still open and gets some very good reviews. Does anyone know if the owner is still alive. She was quite ancient when I was there last. There is a book about the hotel. Does anyone know the name of it and if it is still available?

Perth
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12 posts
26 reviews
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8. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

I've just come back and stayed at the Design Hotel Sorbonne - it was just lovely! Directly opposite the Sorbonne University, bistro's and restaurants just around the corner, mid-way between the Luxembourg Gardens and the Touristy part of the Latin Quarter. Walking distance to Notre Dame. I absolutely loved the stay and as it was my first time, just walked around getting a feel for the city. I didn't want to make many plans so I just went along with what came up - it was a wonderful experience. Have fun! :)

Paris, France
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6,833 posts
118 reviews
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9. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

atexaninireland - Just a heads-up - the hotel facilities at Hotel Dieu are open, at least until January 2014 - after that, they are not certain. The clerk said that they will continue accepting reservations to the Hospitel, but could not guarantee they would be able to honor them, as things are changing on a day-to-day basis.

The entire Hotel Dieu complex is scheduled to undergo partial closing and massive re-construction, despite years of public opposition. A huge loss to the community, all due to the economy.

san francisco
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1,768 posts
29 reviews
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10. Re: Which area of Paris to stay for the best atmosphere?

I could never stay there anyway. It is hospital. I am a nurse who works in a hospital. There are so many ghosts there. It would be awful for me and the view is not as good as the Esmeralda. I will stick with the Esmeralda. Every time I have gone to Paris and not stayed there because I wanted to try something newer without the peeling old fashioned wallpaper and the dated furniture, I always wished I was at the Esmeralda. I hate hospitals even when I am sick. I can't imagine staying in one on vacation.