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5th ARR: B&B of Marie Françoise Turpin

rue Buffon

Reviewed by: Richard M from IN, review #2843

When: May 2010

The best B&B in Paris, by far. Hospitality, location, charm.

I should have written this review years ago. In 2001, my wife and I met Marie Françoise Turpin via Paris B&B. Since then, we have stayed with her three other times and in three weeks, will be there again!

Where to start?  Upon arrival into Paris, you are met by Marie after your short walk groom Gare Austerlitz. The apartment complex that she owns two apartments in is a gated community, protected by a code at the front street gate as well as at the building itself. Although it is one of the safest neighborhoods I have stayed in, it's always nice to know that the people that are entering the area are people that are supposed to be there... Guests and residents. 

Marie is fluent in English and Italian in addition to French. She is a wonderful guide of Paris if you would like her to be. What I mean by that is if you are wanting to know where to go and how to get there, she will be there for you. However, if you already know what is going on and do not need the assistance, she will respect that as well. She wants your stay in Paris to be one that you remember and enjoy for the rest of your life. 

Every morning, she prepares coffee and fresh croissants, along with cereal, yogurt, and even eggs and "French" toast if you like. She is a very good cook, and the company that she provides at breakfast is second to none.  Even though we are crazy Americans that are sitting at the table in their pajamas still, looking a bit jet-lagged, she will give you tips for your travels that day, speak of the day's news and current events if you like, or just about anything else you would like to talk about.  

The best part of the breakfast with Marie - which may last a good hour - is that we ate so much my wife and I rarely would eat lunch on a normal Parisian day. We may have a snack along the way, but breakfast gets you going on the right foot and you are ready for a great day of experiencing the best city in the world. 

Although there is the obligatory McDonald's right down the street, the area also has a couple great little bistros near the train station. There is a great Italian place a block down from the front gate of the apartment, same side of the street past the elementary school. Marie is always willing to give you her own recommendations as well. She can also make the phone call in French if the restaurant requires a reservation. 

Although the train station is right down the street, less than 3 city blocks away, we have found it wonderful to walk to some of our destinations if we feel the urge to enjoy the scenery at a slower pace. You can make Notre Dame cathedral in 10-15 minutes and the Eiffel Tower in a half hour or so. It's a beautiful walk down the edge of the Seine. 

Another great part about the location of the apartment is that it is across the street, literally, from the Jardin des Plantes. Inside the garden you will find people going for their daily jog, children playing in the paths and enjoying a carousel ride, as well as the Natural History Museum and the local zoo.

If you are looking for a romantic place that is very secluded nearby, check out the Jardin Alpin inside the Jardin des Plantes. It is in the northwest side of garden. It is an amazing garden inside a garden that is far away from the hustle and bustle of the rest of the gardens that you feel like you are in a different world all together.

Once you have ended your stay in Paris and all of your breakfast talks with Marie, it will be time to head back to the airport to come home. If you leave in the afternoon, we suggest taking the train back the the airport. You can take the RER C to St Michel and then pickup the RER B that will take you to CDG. 

However, if you have an early morning flight, simply let Marie know the night before and she will have a taxi waiting for you anytime you would like. I do mean anytime!! We had a 7am flight once from Paris and that taxi was there at 4:30am just like she said it would be. She has a priority reservation number for a local taxi company and always is willing to take care of your needs. The taxi ride will run you about 60€ or so that time of day, though. 

If you have any questions, I would always be willing to field them. Drop me an email @ rwmorris@insighhtbb.com

Enjoy your trip to Paris and enjoy out hostess as well!

Reviewed by: BuckyE from MD, review #2026

When: 2006

Great location with a fabulous hostess.

Marie Françoise Turpin offers two rooms in her apartment. We've stayed there twice, once with my father and his partner, and will be staying there again this September.

Marie Françoise' apartment is in a gated modern building complex on the rue Buffon opposite the Jardin des Plantes. It's a few minutes walk, at most, from the Gare Austerlitz. This isn't an atmospheric "old Paris" location, but it's handy to a lot of them, and to transportation. The apartment is decorated with art objects from North Africa, where Marie Françoise lived and still visits with her granddaughter. This is what you might call "real Paris," that is, the home of someone who lives and works in Paris and loves the city.

Marie Françoise is a wonderful hostess. She speaks better English than I do, and loves to converse. She is an art lover, can direct you to a wealth of things to do and see, and serves a very nice breakfast. She will make reservations at restaurants and such, provide metro carnets, guide and accompany you. Or, be happy to see you scoot out into her Paris.

We have stayed with Marie Françoise in her apartment, but now she also has a separate apartment in her complex for rent. I can't recommend her too highly. You can't go wrong. No website, but you can find details here: Bed and Breakfast in Paris

This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.

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