Let’s face it: Paris is massive. A metropolis of 2.3 million supported by a tangled (yet comprehensive) network of sixteen metro lines, then sub-divided into 20 spiralling arrondissements (administrative districts). For those who can’t tell their 14th from their 16th, the left bank from the right, our friends at Room5 France have lent us a helping hand to match the perfect Parisian stay and neighbourhood to your travel style.
Break free from the chains (so to speak) and see the city’s personable side through one of these hidden Paris boutique hotels. Load up on your “t+ tickets” and off we go on this Tour de Paris…
TRAVEL STYLE: FOODIE
- Arrondissement: 2nd – Montorgueil
- Hint: On Rue Bachaumont, keep an eye out for the hotel’s royal blue awnings.
- Neighborhood hotspot: Cooking supply store E. Dehillerin
Just steps away from the Rue Montorgueil market, the Hôtel Bachaumont should be your petit pied-à-terre to discover the authentic tastes of Paris. Interiors designed by Dorothée Meilichzon are refreshing with bespoke furniture specially made to fit the guestrooms. A white marble “runner” in the entryway, minimal wooden bath stools and retro headboards upholstered with Pierre Frey fabric may just inspire you to redecorate at home!
Roll out of bed at the Bachaumont and head straight for the hotel’s sunlit jardin d’hiver (winter garden). A walk around the breakfast buffet (included with select room rates) reveals a generous spread of oven-fresh breakfast pastries, homemade jams, fresh fruit, specialty coffee and eggs made to order.
By night, the hotel’s neo-brasserie charms hotel guests and curious Parisians with their modern elevation of traditional bistro dishes like chicken liver mousse and a revisited croque-monsieur. Housed under an Art Deco-inspired glass roof, the setting is smart and polished. In short, délicieux!
Hôtel du Temps
TRAVEL STYLE: BUDGET
- Arrondissement: 9th – Montholon
- Hint: Once you spot Bistro Le Montholon, look for the bronze letters spelling out HOTEL and the lobby’s potted palm trees.
- Neighborhood hotspot: Marché couvert Saint-Quentin
The Hôtel du Temps is a breath of fresh air in the 9th arrondissement. Not solely for its poised décor with tropical motifs, but a jazzy bar, rustic exposed elements, crisp linens and an affordable price point make this refuge for the kitsch and cool a true winner.
Single and double rooms starting at just $100 a night (check trivago to make sure you’re scoring the best price for this ideal hotel). That means that you’ll have a few extra euros to spend at the hotel’s underground cellar bar. Or how about picking up a Bordeaux and heading across the way to Square Montholon?
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The hotel is situated near metro stations Cadet and Poissonière and less than ten minutes by foot from Gare du Nord and Gare de l’Est for budget travellers arriving by long-distance train (say, the Eurostar from London) or the RER B from Charles de Gaulle airport.
Hôtel Jacques de Molay
TRAVEL STYLE: LGBT
- Arrondissement: 3rd – Le Marais
- Hint: From Square du Temple, walk towards Le Sancerre restaurant, the Hotel exterior painted maroon.
- Neighborhood hotspot: L’as du Falafel
Immerse yourself in the life of Le Marais with a stay at the Hôtel Jacques de Molay on Rue des Archives, one of the area’s main arteries. This three-star cozy property is ideally situated to venture to the Archives Nationales, the Picasso Museum, the Place de la République and the world-class Centre Pompidou.
Rooms are categorized three ways into Business, Deluxe and Superior, each with a different traveller in mind. Air con, a mini bar, and free WiFi come standard with all rooms. The hot breakfast spread in the morning is an ode to France’s best with cannelés, macarons, charcuterie, regional cheeses, eggs and the very intriguing pineapple carpaccio.
An on-site sauna and fitness center, reserved exclusively for the guests of this 23-room hotel, are perfect to decompress as a couple after a day of exploring Paris. The Jacques de Molay also rents out collapsible electric scooters should you fancy a romantic whirl around town à deux.
TRAVEL STYLE: ART LOVER
- Arrondissement: 9th – Pigalle
- Hint: From Place Pigalle, walk to the left of the Bio C’ Bon. Look for the hotel’s name in neon.
- Neighborhood hotspot: Rue des Martyrs
Once synonymous with brothels, Pigalle is once again looking at its raison d’être with new movers and shakers settling into its neck of the woods — one of which is Le Pigalle. The art lover in you will fall head over your Minelli heels for this boutique hotel’s handsome café and bar, vinyl record library and stocked newspaper and book kiosk – the Instagram possibilities are infinite.
The property functions very much as a neighbourhood hotel furnishing its 40 guestrooms with relics of Pigalle’s past and curio from the present day. Learn about the personal stories behind Le Pigalle whether it be their graphic designer, bath amenity artisan or furniture hunter.
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Much like the rest of the hotel, a harmonious mish-mash of vintage pieces come together in each of Le Pigalle’s rooms to create a “haven of tranquility” meant to resemble more of “a friend’s bedroom than a cookie-cutter hotel room” — the kind where you can raid the vinyl collection, that is.
Hôtel Le Lapin Blanc
TRAVEL STYLE: FASHIONISTA
- Arrondissement: 5th – Sorbonne
- Hint: On Boulevard Saint-Michel, keep an eye out for the hidden entrance between Kilo Shop Kawaii and Les Opticiens Conseils.
- Neighborhood hotspot: Palais du Luxembourg
It’s not hard for fashionistas to fall down the rabbit hole at the Hôtel Le Lapin Blanc. A feather-light elegance and a painted in pastel identity, conceived by Quantic Studio and Anais Albar, feel like an escape from the glitz and grandiosity of the French capital.
Reserve a Superior Double room and get acquainted with the true definition of an en-suite tub (from which you can nearly reach the bed!) A serene atmosphere permeates throughout the hotel promising tender moments alone with your loved one. Alternatively, throw your own private fashion show with your new purchases. Because well… pourquoi pas?
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If you don’t find yourself swallowed up by a storm of fashion-forward Sorbonne students spilling out of class next to the hotel, strut over for some shopping along Rue de Rennes, Rue du Four and Boulevard Saint-Germain. Cap your shopping spree off with a must-have sleeve of Ladurée macarons and retreat to the Jardin du Luxembourg.
Le Cinq Codet
TRAVEL STYLE: LUXURY
- Arrondissement: 7th – Les Invalides
- Hint: At the top of Rue Joseph Granier, follow the curve of the building to the left to find the Hotel entrance.
- Neighborhood hotspot: Pont Alexandre III
Inhabiting the former France Telecom building, today’s Le Cinq Codet cuts through the typical neoclassical and Haussmannian stylings of Paris with its Art Deco overhaul by Jean-Philippe Nuel. For the discerning traveller, there is no need to compromise on location with a room reservation here plonking you between the Invalides and the Eiffel Tower’s Champ de Mars.
The hotel plays into its curvaceous form by creating intimate spheres of privacy in guestrooms and common spaces. Rooms range in size from 200 square feet to nearly 900 square feet, perfect for any luxury visitor whether you come solo or as a family of four.
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Five-star touches make guests feel completely cared for with goose down bedding, twice-daily housekeeping, in-room Nespresso machines, and sumptuous Terry bathrobes. Fine art aficionados ought to set aside time to admire the nearly 400 pieces of artwork including but not limited to photography, sculptures and video installations.
TRAVEL STYLE: FAMILY
- Arrondissement: 15th – Saint-Lambert
- Hint: At Place Charles Vallin, walk to the left of the LCL Bank, you’ll be looking for the orange striped awnings.
- Neighborhood hotspot: Ballon Generali Hot Air Balloon
Paris is often thought to be a busy and bustling place, and there’s certainly good reason behind that claim. Lucky for families with little ones, the Chouette Hôtel makes the city all the more relatable thanks to its mascot owl playing cache-cache (hide and go seek) around the hotel.
Families looking for a bigger room can try the Executive Triple with a double and a single sofa bed or the Junior Suite with an enclosed bedroom for two and a double sofa bed in the lounge. A single crib can be added to most rooms for an extra 10 Euro. The Chouette is air conditioned throughout (perfect for cooling down during Paris’ notoriously hot summers) and guestrooms come soundproofed for bed jumpers.
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The hotel is a five-minute walk from Convention metro station on Line 12 (to put Are we there yet? inquiries to a rest) and five minutes to the green expanses of Parc Georges Brassens. Additionally, a Carrefour supermarket sits kitty-corner from the Chouette for some Laughing Cow cheese, Petit Écoliers cookies and other between meal snacks.
Have you been to Paris?
We’d love to hear your boutique hotel recommendations.
This article was originally published on Room5 US.