Vacation rentals in France (farms, cottages, gites, apartments)
Review 5595: Owner, Montparnasse Apartment (#239345)
1bed/1bath apartment in Montparnasse, Paris
Juine 2013, 9 days
Paris Montparnasse neighborhood, Blvd Edgar Quinet. We loved the area, since it was definitely more of a neighborhood than a tourist spot.
Very near several Metro lines, the Gare Montparnasse, lots of cafes, restaurants, and shopping options.
The apartment is comfortable, recently renovated, and well-stocked with everything from a complete range of kitchen supplies to a wheeled shopping bag for trips to the market. It's seven floors up (there is a very efficient elevator), with some nice views of Paris rooftops and even the top of the Eiffel Tower.
There is a good sized living/dining room, and just off that a full-width glassed-in room used for storage -- or to set up a clothes drying rack. The washer supposedly had drying built in, but it wasn't really a tumble dryer, and the clothes seemed to come out better if you hung them up.
There's plenty of storage space, and all the usual appliances (stove, microwave, clothes washer, dishwasher) – with the usual French impenetrable user interfaces. We finally gave up and emailed the owners, who responded promptly with PDF manuals for the microwave and washing machine. It still took us a while to decipher the instructions!
The Internet WiFi worked very well.
The apartment was very quiet, since it was through a gate across a courtyard from the boulevard. I don't actually think the pictures on its website do it justice, since many of them were taken at night, but the apartment is nice and bright during the day.
No garden; this is a city apartment. But it is on a boulevard with lots of trees down the center, and just across from the leafy Montparnasse Cemetery, which is a nice place to walk. It is also just over the line from the 6th arrondissement, and not far from the Luxembourg Gardens.
The apartment is furnished in typical Ikea style, with everything two people could want. The living room has comfortable sofas, and a nice secretary-type desk for a laptop if you bring one. Everything was very clean and in good condition.
There is one decent-sized bedroom with a comfortable queen bed and a bedside table and lamp on each side. There is plenty of storage space for clothes, both in the bedroom and the hall.
The bathroom is especially nice, with a large walk-in shower, and ample counter space to spread out toiletries. There is a hair dryer.
The kitchen has lots of counter space and is very well-equipped with everything you might need. At least, we couldn't find anything lacking. The stove has only a cook-top, and the microwave is also a convection oven, but wouldn't be great for baking. Not something we wanted to do with so many wonderful patisseries in the neighborhood!
Problems or Bonuses
We had no problems with the apartment and really enjoyed our stay there. The only caution I would offer is that if you are there in school season, you wouldn't be sleeping late. There is a school directly behind, and a very loud school bell rings every hour or so, starting at 8am. We are always up well before that, so it didn't disturb us, and other than that, the school was not noisy.
The location on Blvd Edgar Quinet was quite a bonus, since there are farmer's markets on the center of the blvd twice a week. On Sunday the same space houses a nice craft and artist market. The Sunday we left, there was also a vide grenier (flea market). And one evening, there was even a bicycle race up, down and around the boulevard. Lots of fun!
Agency and Representatives (and price)
We rented directly from the owners, through VRBO. They were excellent to deal with and responded quickly and completely to all our questions. We liked being able to pay them by check in US dollars, since they live much of the year in California. We had to send them a fairly large damage deposit check, but it was returned to us uncashed promptly after our stay. They also accept payment by credit card.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
I would absolutely recommend this apartment to anyone who does not want to be in the heart of tourist sites in Paris. It is not a trendy, "happening" neighborhood, but one where people live, and you can feel part of everyday Parisian life.
For us, the location and the apartment were perfect. I would not hesitate to stay there again.
Things to do in this area
What can I say ... this is Paris ... you can't possibly run out of things to do! You can get anywhere in the city very easily and quickly on the Metro, with three stations representing several lines nearby.
I wrote a good bit about our stay on the SlowTrav forums at Reporting in from Paris.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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