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"The best of America drifts to Paris. The American in Paris is the best American. It is more fun for an intelligent person to live in an intelligent country. France has the only two things toward which we drift as we grow older – intelligence and good manners."
&#ndash; F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940), U.S. author.

Tulip Inn Group - Opera de Noailles

In its annual lodging guide, the Paris Tourist Office lists some 1500 member hotels within the city's 20 arrondissements. The actual count, though, is closer to 2200 establishments – offering roughly 85,000 rooms in all. Despite the tremendous choice of accommodations, you should always reserve well in advance.

St. Michel bathroom

During the past decade, Paris has witnessed a general upgrade of its hotels, so that many previously lackluster, cheap lodgings have been replaced by good-value facilities in the lower to middle price range. Air conditioning is commonplace in middle- to higher-priced rooms, but is not considered a prerequisite for comfort, since Paris' hot weather season is usually short-lived. Due to a shortage of precious real estate, travelers should expect hotel rooms in the oldest quartiers to be generally much smaller than their American counterparts. A nominal séjour (lodging) tax of €2 per person, per night is charged to pay for promotion of tourism in Paris.

Continental breakfast

As travelers throughout Europe will discover, not all hotel rooms offer private bathroom facilities. It is not uncommon in lower-priced hotels for guests to share a bathroom down the hall. Be sure to read our property descriptions to determine if private baths are available, and specify whether you wish to have a baignoire (bathtub) or douche (shower) when you make reservations. Assume that suites have full bathrooms with tubs. Another fixture to which Americans are typically unaccustomed is the bidet.

Almost all Paris hotels charge extra for breakfast (though an online booking may include it), with prices ranging from €6 to more than €20 per person in luxury establishments. The usual fare is a Continental breakfast consisting of café au lait (coffee with hot milk) and croissants; for anything more elaborate, the price will be higher. You may be better off finding the nearest café or bakery.

Visitors on the tightest of budgets may wish to consider an array of hostels, some privately operated and several run by International Youth Hostels (an organization boasting over 5,000 facilities worldwide). If you plan to stay at least a week or longer, a variety of private apartments/studios, condominiums, and apartment-hotels offer the convenience of certain home amenities – such as fully-applianced kitchens, clothes washers, entertainment systems, wi-fi, etc. – at a savings of one-third to one-half of average hotel stays.


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