My friend and I are traveling to Paris for the first time in September. We plan to stay six nights and we are looking for a hotel with spacious rooms and separate beds. We are also on a budget and do not want to spend more than the $2,500 we each budgeted for ourselves (this includes our air fare from Chicago. We are in our mid-50s and interested in tours, nightlife, restaurants, and shoppings. Can you give us an idea of where to stay? Thank you.
Maybe if you tell us what your budget actually is for your hotel, we could offer suggestions. If you want a "spacious" room I hope you have set aside a good deal of money for accommodation! Only the really high priced hotels in Paris offer spacious rooms.
I stayed in the Holiday Inn (not all that exciting) right near the Luxembourg Gardens and it was a great location and the rooms were sized like a typical US hotel with 2 full size beds. Pricing not really cheap but you are splitting it so that helps. Large bathroom as well.
Don't get too cheap. Last year, two women friends of ours went cheap in Paris. They were in the Latin Quarter but their room was not really clean and there were no sheets. For another circumstance, our daughter-in-law has spent lots of time in France and speaks French. She occasionally travels to Paris with a friend. In fact, she'll be traveling to Paris again within 60 days. She is a merchant selling European things so these trips are partly business. She likes to stay at the Hotel Champ de Mars on Rue de Champ de Mars. A double room with twin beds is shown as 115E/night on their website. You can check them out on www.tripadvisor.com
Ck out Hotel Kensington in rue cler area walking to Eiffel Tower. It is clean with elevator and great area close to many sights walking. Metro close. Website makes it look dreary however it is ok inside as are the rooms albeit small by US stds. Otherwise up your budget and stay at a chain hotel like Novotel.
Thank you so much for the prompt replies. A friend of a friend suggested we stay at the Novotel Les Halles. I looked at another email on this site and it seems like several travelers like the Hotel des Grandes Ecoles. A travel agent suggested the Franklin D. Roosevelt or the Victoria Palace (a bit pricey though).
I love the Rue Cler neighborhood, there are some budget friendly options, however, as stated above you will not get a spacious room. I have stayed in really great hotels and b&bs in Europe that were tiny, but it was just a place to sleep, so it didn't bother me one bit. Another option is an apartment, my friend stayed in Paris last spring and between her and her other traveling companion an apartment was pretty affordable.
We have narrowed it down to the Franklin D. Roosevelt or the Hotel des Grandes Ecoles. Any thoughts?
Not all the rooms at Hotel des Grandes Ecole are large. I've stayed in two there, one was so tiny we had to move to another room, and b/c it was early April we were lucky that they had other vacant rooms. Our second room was decent but not what I would call large. Just be sure to know what you're getting before you get there.
Well, it's the Franklin D. Roosevelt hotel then!
The Franklin Roosevelt Hotel looks really nice on their website, but they say prices start at 179 euro for a standard room, that's not exactly budget. And it's in the 8th arrondissement. For that price, I'd want to stay in the 4th (Marais and Ile Saint Louis), 5th (Latin Quarter) or the 6th (St. Germain), as close to the river as possible. My favorite area is Ile Saint Louis (the little island east of Notre Dame). Check out the Hotel Saint Louis en L'Isle at www.saintlouisenlisle.com. Less expensive and better location imo. I don't care for the rue Cler neighborhood, too far from the river, Notre Dame and the heart of Paris for me.
Somehow I've missed the jump from 'budget' to four hundred bucks per night.
Leslie, I am going to suggest that you reconsider as well. Not sure if you have shopped airfare yet, but I just bought tickets for SEA to BUD (this May) and paid about $950 for one and $1050 for another. I think from Chicago to Paris you "might" get an $800 Sept airfare if you are a really good shopper, but at least $1000 should be viable. That leaves $1500 for 6 days. I believe that you can easily do $200/day for hotel, food, etc. if you research ahead of time and don't eat all your meals out (which in Paris is pretty easy to do - IMO). Given your budget and some quick research that I just did, you should definitley look into VRBO for an apartment rather than a hotel. It will give you more room (although spacious compared to the US - maybe not) and be less expensive plus make not eating all your meals out much easier. If you would like a couple of suggestions for apartments, let me know. I am sure that people will tell you that my $200 per day is not doable, but I can assure you that it is. Also, I lived in Chicago (SF and Sea) and agree with the not needing to buy anything in Paris. Spend all your money on food (I can give lots of suggestions) and entertainment (bike tour, river boat, opera, depends on your taste). You can do this trip on your budget!
Rent an apartment. You should find something well within your budget.
And let's talk about that budget of $2500 each, including airfare. There are more expert travelers on this site, but I am about the same age as you. I spent 7 nights in Paris, stayed at a hotel at 70 euros/night, and spent just over $3000.00, including airfare. I didn't scrimp and save, and I didn't splurge. I spent money on what was important to me, and I didn't do much shopping. If I'd shared a room with someone, at about 120 euros approx per room, I'd have saved 10 euros a night. (I would prefer to spend that for some privacy in the small rooms, but that's me.) I think you need to try to bump up the budget a little. If you can't because anymore money will mean you can't go, then that's that. But you'll have a better trip if you don't stress over every glass of wine or museum fee.
After much stressing, I have decided to postpone my trip much to the dismay of my friend. I simply cannot afford to spend much more. She is still going however.
I agree with Kathy, Michael and John... don't give up your trip. You can do it on your budget and have a wonderful time.
Even though I'm the one who said your budget should be a little bigger, I also say you should go. You can do it on $2500. I just wanted you to know my recent experience. Please go.
I would suggest that you do some serious planning instead of looking at a 4 star hotel like the Roosevelt. The internet is a powerful thing so use it. Go to Venere.com or Booking.com and look at what they have in the fifth or sixth arrondissements. You can check prices at a number of hotels and take what looks best. Go all the way through the booking process except for the final commitment to find out the real price and availablityof the rooms.The imprtortant thing is to do it now because the good value small hotels seem to be pretty fully booked. Last fall we stayed in a very pleasant small hotel in in the fifth between Notre Dame and the Pantheon. The location was off the main streets and was very quiet and gave us a chance to see how real Parisians live. The room plus breakfast at the hotel came to less than $200 per day for the two of us. We ate mostly in restaurants that cater to tourists and had a great time. September is a good time to go since the weather is cooler, the crowds are down somewhat and places like the Luxembourg Gardens are still in bloom. Paris is a beautiful city, so take some really good walking shoes and take it in.
Leslie, a good travel partner is hard to find. Figure out a way to make your budget work and don't miss out on this opportunity. Paris is absolutely wonderful and you will not regret any sacrifices you need to make to get there. There are many ways to maximize your euros, for example, the Museum Pass will save you a lot of time (no waiting lines) and money. The attractions are easy to reach via the metro and busses and the city is also very walkable. Get a copy of the Rick Steves Paris book, watch the Paris DVD, get a copy of "Midnight in Paris", and get busy with your planning!
Hi Leslie, When I was in my mid fifties, a few years ago, I rented this flat for a week in the 6th, on Place St. Ande-des-Arts. It was right in the thick of an awesome, bustling neighborhood. It's 2 whole rooms and a kitchenette, that is very quiet. The only minus is that it's up 53 steps! But if I could do it, so can you. It's a good price for the best, most fun, area, and a larger than normal flat. The owner, Gerald, was very easy to deal with.
Hope this helps. Bon Voyage. http://www.holiday-rentals.co.uk/France/holiday-apartment-Paris/p11153.htm#calendar
I just got back from Paris earlier this week, for 6 nights in Paris and 3 nights in London we spent about $3k for 2 people EXCLUDING airfare (we only paid taxes and fees on frequent flier tickets, so it's not a fair inclusion). Our room was in the 2nd and was 65 euro/night. All the rooms are different prices based on the accommodations available but they may have a single room that would work for your budget (message me if you're interested). The beds were very comfortable and the room was clean. Our room had a full bathroom but some rooms did have a toilet down the hall (all have showers). We bought 2 4-day museum passes and planned our museums for those days. Since our hotel was close to a lot (15 min walk to Notre Dame) we made it on 2 carnets of metro tickets the whole time (excluding the separate tickets to Versailles and to/from the airport). We only ate 1 "expensive" meal (~$100 for 2) our whole time in Paris. We ate a lot of sandwiches from little bakeries, croissants for breakfast or a baguette purchased the day before with a jar of jam in our room. We also got bread, meats and cheese from the little shops near our hotel and brought them back to our room room at least once for dinner. By the end of the day we were often too tired from walking around all day and didn't want to sit in a restaurant. We did 2 Paris Walks tours: the 2 Islands (ok, not our favorite) and the Marais 2 (loved it). Those are 2 hour walking tours and are 12 euros each (no reservations, just show up).
Leslie, Try Aida Opera Hotel in Paris, hotel with good location near Grands Boulevards, Galeries Lafayettes,restaurants... there are large rooms (ask the hotel to get it).
You can book at www.aida-opera.com. If you book now, your budget could be respected. Bon sejour !
Levana must work at or be connected with the hotel she is recommending. She has posted twice, both times to recommend that hotel. The other thread she resurrected from 7/11. The last post from Leslie indicated she had decided to not take the trip after all. I wonder if she changed her mind?
I suggest you rent an apartment - a small studio for 2 - they tend to be cheaper than a hotel and you save by having a fridge on site, breakfasts "at home" and doing some modest cooking in Paris is fun, given all the wonderful markets. They typically include a free phone and many have free Internet in the apartment if you bring your electronic device of choice. I have used Vacation in Paris rental agency 3 times and they have been reliable for me and they have reasonably priced apartments. ParisPerfect, I understand is also good, but much more expensive.
Buy a Navigo card good for unlimited transportation for a week, but it works only for a full calendar week-you can't start in say Wednesday and continue using it til the following Tuesday. Iceland Air tends to have reasonable flights to Paris. Paris can be affordable if you do a lot of pre-planning, reading ahead to "learn" the ropes of frugal travel, etc.