With affordable boutiques at an all-time premium, cookie-cutter hotels are simply out of the question when it comes to a Parisian rendezvous. Here, 10 of our favorites from sexy stays in Le Marais to Art Deco-inspired pied-à-terres in the relatively tourist-free 2nd arrondissement.
Hotel Paris Bastille Boutet - MGallery by Sofitel
Housed in the Bastille neighborhood’s Maison Boutet—the former abode of an exotic wood importer and cabinetmaker, then a chocolate factory—Hotel Paris Bastille Boutet opened in 2015 holding steadfast to its industrial roots. While the exterior is all Art Deco mosaics, the minimalist guestrooms—which are best reached via a commanding, six-story central staircase—feature sleek dark woods, high ceilings, warm tones, and floor-to-ceiling windows. Once you’ve adequately unpacked, make a beeline for the basement where the hotel hides a petite white and blue pool that looks straight out of a Wes Anderson film.
There’s nothing subtle about Parisian bar mogul Pierre Moussié’s 18-room, 10th arrondissement boutique. In fact, waking up in Hôtel Providence is like finding yourself in your most eccentric aunt’s jewelry box. The 1854 Haussmann-style building is dripping in beyond bold wallpapers, rich and brooding color palettes, concentrated splashes of brass, marble mosaic flooring, and postcard-worthy Montmartre and Sacré-Cœur views. Although rooms run the aesthetic gamut from classic Parisian to bohemian chic, common themes are expertly woven throughout. Head to the ground floor Gothic speakeasy-esque bar and restaurant for regional specialities like duck foie gras with smoked eel and vinegar reduction and oysters from the Normandy coast.
Hotel L’Echiquier Opera Paris - MGallery by Sofitel
Step into your own 1930s-style Parisian apartment at Hotel L’Echiquier Opera Paris, set on a quiet side street not far from the Grands Boulevards and Opéra Garnier. Seductive Belle Époque decor comes in the form of Haussmann chandeliers, heavy velvet curtains, and lacquered wooden wall paneling; plus—from the top floors— unobstructed views out over the rooftops of Montmartre are thrown in for good measure. Traveling with tots? They’ll enjoy Le Petite Prince-themed amenities while adult interests are piqued at ground-level Le 38 Bar Lounge, an intimate winter garden cocktail den done up in sparkling mosaic tiles, rattan armchairs, and intimate seating alcoves.
On the border between the 9th and 18th arrondissements, Paris’ red-light Pigalle district used to be strictly known for its sleaze factor—that is; sex shops, erotic adult theaters, and the iconic Moulin Rouge cabaret. But over the past few years, naughty “Pig Alley” has undergone something of a renaissance, ushering in au courant fashion labels, cocktail dens, and bobo boutiques—all of which draw it comparisons to trendy Brooklyn nabes like Williamsburg. Le Pigalle’s exterior is in typical Neoclassical / La Nouvelle Athènes fashion (like the rest of the 9th arr.), while 40 design-led rooms are done up in second-hand furniture, vintage art posters, stacks of books, and turntables with a selection of vinyl records.
RELATED: 25 Places to Visit in Paris Now
Le Roch Hotel & Spa
Set on a quiet historic street between Place de l’Opera and Place Vendôme in Paris’ 1st arrondissement, this boutique sleep is sure to spur some serious postcode envy. A 15-minute walk in any direction can land you at the city’s most coveted attractions, including the Louvre, Champs-Élysées, Palais Royal, and Le Marais neighborhood. Indoors, thirty-seven design-forward guestrooms go all in on Carrara marble, walnut flooring, brass trimmings, and boldly-patterned area carpets. As comfortable as the accommodations are, be sure to hit the swimming pool—a black lava rock number flooded with natural light. Looking to score a hot dinner reservation or track down a new art gallery? Chat up Le Roch’s head concierge Benjamin—the youngest Clefs d’Or concierge in the world.
Les Bains Paris
The Marais neighborhood’s Les Bains Paris has lived more than a few lives since it opened in 1885. Initially, the Haussmann-style building served as the city’s first bathhouse, attracting high-profile customers like Marcel Proust. Then, in 1978, the spot took a hedonistic turn as it transitioned into club that saw the likes of David Bowie, Prince, Mick Jagger, and more. Finally, in 2011 it relaunched as a luxury hotel with the help of French architect Vincent Bastie and interior designers Tristan Auer and Denis Montel who filled 39 airy guestrooms with contemporary artworks, distressed gray Gainsbourienne carpeting, and vintage-style replica sofas à la Warhol (who was a regular face at the club). Seasonally-inspired neo-brasserie La Salle-à-Manger is still one of the hottest tables in town; drop by the red lacquer dining room for a locally-sourced menu including honey from Les Bains’ rooftop beehive.
Tucked away on a narrow cobblestoned street in the Mouffetard neighborhood, Hotel Henriette’s hip conceptual design comes by way of fashion journalist Vanessa Scoffier. Thirty-two guestrooms mix and match 1950s Danish tables, palm-printed wallpapers, technicolored pastel and plywood walls, sleek brass lighting fixtures, and faux-fur desk chairs. Need a moment of contemplative quiet? Hang out in the conservatory winter garden which makes way to a bijou stone patio (think: vine-covered walls, wildflower-filled shabby-chic pitchers, and worn bistro tables and chairs).
A two-year overhaul by Milanese designers Dimore Studio was what it took to transform this once five-story circa-1791 mansion into a glam Art Deco boutique. Today, each of Hotel Saint-Marc’s 25 pied-a-terre-style rooms are a perfect marriage of vintage and modern, featuring palm-printed drapes, Dedar velvet sofas in hues like mustard yellow and dusky blush, rugs from Louis de Poortere, and geometric brass headboards. Aside from slick design, the restoration also introduced a glass-topped, trellis-lined courtyard and a basement-level counter-current lap pool and hammam. Since you’ll be just a stone’s throw from trendy Opéra Garnier and Rue Vivienne, plan on devoting ample time to the 2nd arrondissement's boutique shops and laid-back brasseries.
Ask anyone who lives in a shoebox-size apartment in Manhattan, and they’ll tell you location is everything. The same sentiment applies to Parisian boutiques, and 49-room Hotel Bachaumont plants its roots in the Montorgueil quartier, just minutes from emblematic attractions like Musee du Louvre, the Notre Dame, and the right bank of the Seine. The hotel’s minimalist Art Deco-inspired aesthetic comes courtesy of interior designer Dorothée Meilichzon; clean and cosy guestrooms feature antique mid-century accents, herringbone parquet floors, deep blue color palettes, and lots of natural light supplied by French balconies.
Saint James Paris
Franco-American designer Bambi Sloan is the eclectic-eyed visionary behind Saint James Paris’ ostentatious decor. Enter through the three-story chateau’s Neoclassical facade—which rests behind a private water fountain and circular drive—and you’ll wander through nearly every decorative period. Power-clashing decor (think: tartan wallpaper, leopard-print carpets, velvet loveseats, and a grand staircase lined with hot air balloon print) in common rooms hints at what’s waiting behind guestroom doors; while all 49 rooms and suites reside behind identical red entranceways, you’ll find no two follow the same aesthetic. Head offsite to gape at Monet’s waterlilies at the little-known Musée Marmottan, get your fix of elegant Asian art at the Guimet, or take in the Frank Gehry-designed Louis Vuitton Foundation in the the Bois de Boulogne. Once back at your temporary home, get acquainted with the Guerlain Spa; there, East meets West with boudoir-style rooms, two Turkish baths, and sensorial face and body treatments.