We recently returned from our fifth trip to Paris -- and our third stay at the Artus Hotel. When we first found the Artus in the 90s, it was known as the Buci Latin. Since then, the Hotels Maurice Hurand group acquired and remodeled the hotel. The new look is sharp and colorful, and the layout of the rooms and baths has been significantly upgraded. The rooms are small by US standards, but this is Paris, right?! (Call ahead if you plan to bring children or family -- the larger suite or multiple rooms may be needed.)
What keeps bringing us back to the Artus? The service and location.
Sanjay Kaloya, Chief Concierge, is always friendly and very helpful. When we could not find tickets to an opera, voila, they magically appeared. New art exhibits? Museum tickets? (So you can avoid the line.) Restaurants? A special bottle of wine for your anniversary? Sanjay and the Artus team are always ready to make our stay as perfect as possible.
... and when you step out the door, the best location in Paris, on the Rue de Buci in the middle of the 6th and the Saint Germain des Prés neighborhood. Rue de Buci is a small 'walk' street in the evening when the restaurants come alive, without the traffic noise of busy Paris. We love to pick up a baguette and cheese at the local market, stop at the neighborhood wine shop, and relax in one of the cafes. The 6th is in the middle of the Left Bank, so we can walk to the Louvre, D'Orsay, the Ille and Notre Dame. Don't miss the ancient Saint Germain des Prés and the Musée national du Moyen Âge (formerly Musée de Cluny) with a fantastic collection from the Middle Ages. If you want to go further across Paris, just hop on the metro. Forget about taxis and rental cars.
A few tips:
Shopping is excellent in the 6th. You can spend a fortune on the best brands -- or save on quality fashion. My wife bought an entire collection of clothes for business in one day during our last trip, and saved quite a bit with better fabrics and quality than she could find in Boston.
Stop at the Cafe de Flore around 4 or 5 in the afternoon, find a table on the outside with a view of the street, ignore the prices on the menu, buy a glass of wine and just watch Paris go by. The high cost of your glasses of wine is the 'rent' for your table and front row seat to the life of Paris -- not based on the cost of the bottle of wine. Waiters will not pester you while you sit there, enjoying the afternoon. (This is true in restaurants as well; waiters will generally leave you alone until you ask for something -- not rush to deliver the check and clear your table for the next customer, like many restaurants in the US.)
The Masses in Saint Germain des Prés and Notre Dame are magical. We happened to be wandering through Saint Germain des Prés one afternoon when a service began, and stayed. I am not Catholic and do not know French, but it was quite an experience. Concerts are also held at Notre Dame, a wonderful place to spend time in.
Avoid Paris in July / August if you can -- when the rest of the world is there. Everything is different without the crowds, just like other major destinations. (That said, we had a great time this year in early August.)
Learn some basic French and try to use it! Embarrass yourself; the waiters and clerks have heard it before -- but they appreciate the effort.
I hope this is helpful!
Even the rooms on the street are quiet, thanks to triple-pane windows and the lack of traffic on Rue...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.