FTF's reporter has found sweet places to dream with the kids tucked in nearby, so you can sleep in the City of Lights without breaking the bank. Here's where to go.
Paris, France was ranked 2009’s 3rd most expensive city in the world – a ranking that might make you think twice before visiting. But Parisian lodgings vary widely, and, with apartments, small hotels, and hostels offering great deals, the savvy tourist can sleep soundly without emptying his wallet. Because of Paris fire codes, cheap Paris hotels with rooms that sleep four are few and far between, but we’ve compiled a list of family-friendly (and budget-friendly!) Parisian sleeps. Note that the last number in the postal code indicates the arrondisement or neighborhood, so you can check a city map and find out how convenient it is to your sights of interest.
Paris Bargain Hotels
Hotel Residence Henri IV
50, rue des Bernardins
(33/01 44 41 31 81)
Located in the Fifth Arrondissement’s (5eme) Latin District, near Notre Dame, the PanthÃ©on and the Sorbonne, this 14-room apartment hotel has all the perks of apartment living, plus the amenities of hotel service. The rooms are lavishly decorated with draped fabrics, plush pillows, and molded ceilings. The air-conditioned apartments come with small kitchenettes, including microwaves, ovens, and dishes, so feel free to eat in. Plus, pets are welcome at this three-star establishment, and the hotel is entirely smoke-free. A computer with complimentary internet is also available, and the rooms have free WiFi. Rates start as low as €149 per night for a Superior Room, which sleeps up to four. Be sure to check the Henri IV website for the most current rates and promotions.
HÃ´tel New Orient
16, rue de Constantinople
(33/01 45 22 21 64)
The New Orient is a small hotel in the Eighth Arrondissement (8eme), the center of Paris’ music scene, located in a quiet residential area. Though the hotel is not within walking distance of most of Paris’ main attractions, it is beside the Paris Conservatoire de Musique, and the friendly concierge service can help you plan your more traditional sightseeing from the nearby metro stops. The two-star Hausmann style hotel offers family rooms for 2 adults and 2 children, with two double beds and a bathroom with a tub. Amenities in the sound-proofed, non-smoking rooms include a hairdryer, a safe, free WiFi, and air-conditioning. If you stay at least two nights, the rate is €130 per night.
Timhotel OpÃ©ra Madeleine
113, rue Saint Lazare
(33/01 43 87 53 53)
The Timhotel is a two-star establishment located just across from the Saint Lazare railway station. Avid shoppers will like that it is right next to the department stores Concorde, OpÃ©ra Garnier, and Madeleine. The 83 rooms, 50 of which are air-conditioned, welcome the weary traveler with comfortable beds and free WiFi and cable. Public car parking is conveniently located nearby, and a buffet breakfast and laundry services are available. A Superior Family Room is air-conditioned, can sleep 2 adults and 2 children, and begins at €142 per night.
Suitehotel Paris Porte de la Chapelle
1 Impasse Marteau
(33/01 49 46 39 39)
The Suitehotel chain has nearly 20 three-star locations around Paris, each offering great amenities at budget prices. The Porte de la Chapelle location is just a five-minute walk to the Porte de la Chapelle metro (across a busy road, but crosswalks make it safe for pedestrians), and in a safe neighborhood with some boulangeries and local department stores. Because the Suitehotel is not located in central Paris (2km away), you’ll get more for your money at the hotel itself. The 30-square-meter rooms are spacious, cleanly and colorfully decorated, and filled with the latest gadgets and amenities. The rooms have a large bathroom with tub, fridge, microwave and sink. Services include free high-speed Internet, on-deman video and movies, a fitness center, car-loan, massages, and an E-corner to stay in touch with business and friends at home. You can park your car indoors nearby for $20USD per day. Rates for a 2-adult, 2-child room start at just $130USD, and breakfast is complimentary.
Youth hostels are a great way to get a bed for cheap, and even to meet some interesting people. Plus, many offer family rooms, so you can still have privacy. Some even boast in-room sinks, though generally all washroom facilities are communal. In order to stay in a Youth Hostel in France, internationals need to buy a Welcome Stamp (€2.90) for each of their first six nights, and the French need to buy a membership card.
80, rue Vitruve
(33/01 40 32 34 56)
Le d’Artagnon is France’s largest youth hostel, with a capacity of 440 guests. The building is 15 minutes from the metro, so be prepared to walk a bit. The impressive facilities include a free cinema, Internet access, a cafÃ©, a games room, and a laundry. Currency exchange at the hostel makes life easy, and plenty of programs can help you spend that money as you explore Paris. Rates start at €23 per bed per night, breakfast included, and family rooms are available with 2-6 beds. With the hostel’s special family rates, children under 10 get a 50% discount during the first 6 nights, and children under 5 are free for the first 6 nights.
CitÃ© des Sciences Hostel
24, rue des Sept Arpents
(33/01 48 43 24 11)
Beds start at €20 per night at this cute and clean hostel, located 15 minutes by metro from central Paris. The CitÃ© des Sciences et de l’Industrie is a science and technology museum nearby, and the GÃ©ode 360 degree cinema isn’t far either. Inside the hostel, there are hot showers in the dorm rooms, a communal dining area, and bikes and lockers for rent. Younger kids can enjoy the playground in the back, while adults relax in the garden, and parents can feel safe that alcohol is not allowed in the hostel. Recent renovations have also cleaned up the establishment with new washroom facilities. The hostel offers family rooms with four or five beds (non-smoking rooms are available), and the rate includes a good omplimentary breakfast.
Hotel des Jeunes (MIJE)
6, rue de Fourcy – 75004 Paris
11, rue du Fauconnier – 75004 Paris
12, rue des Barres – 75004 Paris
(33/01 42 74 23 45)
The MIJE, run by a non-profit organization, has three convenient locations in Paris, each in a safe area (a lot of school groups tend to stay here), each in an old aristocratic 17th-century building. An Internet cafÃ© in the lobby offers online access for €1/hr. Toilets and bathrooms are shared but clean, and an alcohol ban on the premises keeps the hostel kid-friendly. Plenty of hostel programs will help you plan your tour of the city. Rates for triple rooms run €32 per night per person, and group rooms (for 4 or more) run €30 per person. Breakfast is included.
Apartments to Let in Paris
Another option for the budget-conscious family is to rent an apartment, of which there are plenty around the city. This is an expecially useful choice for a family larger than 4. The average rate could come down to €100-170 per night, and you’ll have privacy plus the convenience of a kitchen. Apartments can be viewed online, and usually rent for at least a week.
Some agencies that offer rentals, suggested by The New York Times: Rental France (the owner is Pascal Zytomirski, 33-6-14-65-09-33; www.rentalfrance.com), RothRay (Ray Lampard and Mono Roth, 33-1-48-87-13-37; www.rothray.com) and Paris Address (Xavier Fouquerand, 33-1-43-20-91-57; www.parisaddress.com).
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