I dream of having an apartment in Paris. A small pied-à-terre I can call my own. A pied-à-terre in French translates to foot to the earth, but really it refers to a second home. So when I travel to Paris, I want a home away from home experience. You don’t get that when you stay in a hotel. That’s why I always rent an apartment. Renting an apartment offers you a vacation with a totally different feel, a little more like you live there.
Saint Germain Studio
Push open the glossy red door and step inside to this petite pied-a-terre called Saint Germain Studio. This studio apartment is French-inspired with its quintessential features of a gilded mirror wall, whitewashed walls, high ceiling with original beams. Yes, it’s tiny, but it’s perfectly cozy. Let’s face it, you’re not going to Paris to stay in your room you’re really there to explore the City of Light.
The tiny kitchenette has everything you need to prep a light meal – a European-size fridge, microwave, and a 2-burner glass cooktop. Plenty of dishware, utensils, and yes, the all-important wine glasses and bottle opener are at your disposal. For your morning coffee, there is a French Press or Nespresso Machine. The best part is there is a washer/dryer making traveling light so much easier.
The living space includes a plush velvet love seat perfect for relaxing after a long day of exploring the city. And a tiny bistro table for two to enjoy your morning croissant with tea or coffee.
A comfortable Queen size bed is tucked in a small alcove. A large armoire offers enough space to unpack and store away your luggage. Surprisingly, the bathroom is large and modern with a walk-in shower complete with a set of L’Occitane toiletries.
From the street, you will enter the courtyard from two password-protected keypads to reach the inner courtyard. The apartment is on the premier étage, but for North Americans, that means the second floor in France. There is no elevator, only a spiral staircase and a small footbridge that brings you to two apartments.
From inside the apartment, the tall windows open up onto views of the courtyard. This means it is extremely quiet with no noise from the busy streets of Paris. The downside of having an interior courtyard on a lower level means the apartment is a bit on the dark side with natural light, but no sunlight streaming in.
One of the greatest food pleasures in Paris is going to a cheese shop. Breathe in the air and that delicious cheese smell. I love the fact that the inner courtyard is shared with one of the most famous cheese shops in Paris. Yes, that means the faint smell of delicious French cheese waffles through the air. C’est très magnifique!
One of the best features of the Saint Germain Studio is the location. Right outside your doorstep and within a small block radius are some of the most exclusive shops in Paris. Everything from flowers, butcher, fishmonger, coffee roaster, and wine. There are boutique shoemakers, jewelry, fine antiques, and furniture shops. Here are some of my favourites that are mere steps from the Saint Germain Studio.
- Barthélemy – is a classic Parisian cheese shop and known to be the best one in Paris
- Chocolate Chapon – a premium chocolatier and chocolate ice cream shop
- Pastavino – an Italian specialty grocery shop with fresh homemade meals for take-away
- Le Café Pierre Herme – the famous macarons, pastries, and chocolates
- Boissier – classic candy shop dating back to 1827
- Conservatory of Hemispheres – a classic tea shop that sells teas, infusions, petals, and bark from around the world
And, the restaurants. There are many, but here is a couple that I tried and recommend:
- Le Gévaudan
- Le Florès
- Café Varenne
I adore the local neighbourhood feel of this area. Every morning the shopkeepers would smile and greet me with a Bonjour!
Top Things to Do
The Saint Germain Studio is located in one of the city’s best and chicest neighbourhoods of Saint Germain. Although the apartment lies in the 7th arrondissement it is right on the border of the 6th. That means it is central to explore both arrondissements.
Here are the top things to see and do that are less than a 15-minute walk from the Saint Germain apartment.
- Rodin Museum and Musée d’Orsay
- Hotel des Invalides, including Napoleon’s tomb
- Seine river with its famous bridges
- Tuileries Garden and nearby Louvre
- Saint-Sulpice – church and square
- Les Deux Magots and Cafe de Flore – classic and historic French cafés
- Jardin du Luxembourg
- Saint Germain des Pres church
- Le Bon Marche – 19th century shopping centre and La Grand Epicerie de Paris
About Paris Vacation Apartments
Paris Vacation Apartments is one of the first long-term holiday rental companies in the city. With over 25 years of providing guests the quintessential Parisian experience by staying in one of their properties.
Paris Vacation Apartments offer personalized services for each of their guests. Their team is fluent in French and English. When you book an apartment with them, they assign a dedicated contact who will meet and greet you upon your arrival and departure and make themselves available throughout your stay for anything you might need. The best part is the welcome gift of fresh flowers, wine, and a special treat.
Paris Vacation Apartments owns and operates 22 properties in the best locations in Paris. Search from a studio, 1-bedroom, 2-bedroom or 3+ bedroom in these neighbourhoods in Paris:
- Palais Royal / Musée du Louvre (1st arrondissement)
- Marais /Saint-Paul / île Saint Louis (3rd & 4th arrondissement)
- Invalides /Tour Eiffel (7th arrondissement)
Each of the apartments is in a safe neigbourhood in Paris, close to the metro, amenities, and key attractions.
As a holidaymaker…
If you are looking to stay in the perfect pied-à-terre in Paris why not consider the Saint Germain Studio with Paris Vacation Apartments. They get a 5-star rating for:
- personalized service
- quiet and safe area
As a solo traveler, the size of the apartment is perfect. Although the décor and furnishings are basic, it’s a comfortable space. Would I stay here again? Oui, bien sûr! In fact, this is my second time staying in the Saint Germain Studio. And, I can’t wait to return to the city I love so much and stay at Paris Vacation Apartments.
Thank you to Paris Vacation Apartments for gifting me with a free stay. I only provide an honest review of my impressions and experience. As always, my opinions are my own.