Where to Stay in Paris for a First Time Visit? An Insider's Guide

Where to Stay in Paris for a First Time Visit? An Insider’s Guide 2020 (with map)

Where to Stay in Paris for a First Time Visit? An Insider's GuideWelcome to your complete guide on where to stay in Paris for first-time visitors. Paris is chock-full of some of the best luxury, boutique, budget, and hostel accommodations in the world.

It can be quite overwhelming! From districts, safe areas, sights, prices, public transport and so on.

This guide will cover ALL your questions!

We share first-hand the best areas for first-time visitors, families, couples and solo travelers.

We even included a big map with all neighborhoods and handpicked hotels for couples, families, and friends.

(This guide is always up to date, the last updated November 2020.)

But, first things first:

Question: Where to stay in Paris for a first-time visit?

Answer: My rule of thumb for first-time travelers is always STAY CENTRAL!

That means, aims to stay in the first 10 arrondissements or in English “neighborhoods”. The city of Paris is arranged into different districts, starting in the center of the city, moving outward in a spiral direction.

The very city center includes

  • 1st arrondissement
  • 2nd arrondissement
  • 3rd arrondissement
  • 9th arrondissement
  • 10th arrondissement

Check the map below to get a better idea.

Why do I recommend these areas?

There’s so much to do and see in Paris, you need to savor every minute possible. The first 10 arrondissements provide you with easy access to all of the best museums, tours, and famous landmarks.

They also have easy transportation to the airport, bus and metro lines. That being said, don’t be afraid to venture outside the first 10, as some of Paris’ hidden gems lie off the tourist path.

Do you prefer staying close to the Eiffel Tower? Would you rather stay near the train station? Or do you want a hotel room overlooking the Seine River?

Here’s a full map for you to understand the different areas.

We highlight the districts, main tourists sightseeing in Paris and our handpicked accommodations.

Please note: those are not the exact names of the districts, neither its absolute borders. I just tried to simplify this information.

1. Best areas and handpicked hotels for Paris

As mentioned, the city center of Paris is the perfect place for first-time visitors.

I also understand that different travel styles match different needs. I created an overview of this.

You will notice some areas are excluded or added to the previous recommendation.

Let’s see handpicked hotels.

Continue scrolling or pick your group and travel type on the menu:

1.1 Families
1.2 Couples
1.3 Luxury Traveler
1.4 Design Traveler
1.5 Groups
1.6 Solo-Traveler
1.7 Nightlife-seeking traveler
1.8 Budget Traveler

1.1 Families

Traveling with kids can be tough. European hotels can be small and cramped, you have to hunt down outdoor space for kids to play, and finding a family-friendly restaurant can sometimes feel impossible.

Luckily, we’ve done the leg work for you and tracked down the best family-friendly places to stay in Paris.

  • 6th Arrondissements – St. Germain
  • 7th Arrondissement – Eiffel Tower
  • 2nd Arrondissements

This map shows you the areas, recommended for families:

Handpicked accommodations for families

Figure out what’s most important for your family before booking. Would it be useful to have a kitchenette in your hotel room?

Are playgrounds nearby imperative? Are children too young to make public transportation easy?

Make a list of must-haves and narrow down your accommodation search from there. Here are some of our favorites:

Hotel Les Theatres

For a truly unique hotel stay, visit the Hotel Les Theatres.

The motto is: “A Parisian stay where you are actors and spectators,” and it provides just that.

From the moment you arrive, you’re transported into your own personalized theatre show. You can choose your accommodation theme and backdrop and pay tribute to some of the great French playwrights.

  • Free breakfast and WiFi.
  • Located in the 2nd arrondissement of Paris, in the center of the Theatre District.
  • Only a few steps away from the nearest Metro Station.
Book Hotel Les Théâtres here

Hotel Les Théâtres Paris Bar Hotel Les Théâtres Paris Room

Artus Hotel

Located in the St. Germain neighbor, this colorful, boutique hotel is a great option for families.

The 27 room hotel offers an array of room types including suites, rooms with balconies, separate living quarters and duplex rooms.

There’s plenty to see, do and experience all without having them leave the Artus Hotel grounds.

  • Free Breakfast and WiFi.
  • Located in the 6th arrondissement of Paris.
  • Great left Bank Location.
Book Artus Hotel here

Artus Hotel Paris Room Artus Hotel Paris Bathroom

Résidence Charles Floquet

If you have a big family, then you know just how hard it is to find comfortable accommodations for families over 4 in Europe. Résidence Charles Floquet is an apartment-style hotel that can accommodate up to 8 people comfortably and is only a stone’s throw away from the famous Eiffel Tower.

  • Free WiFi.
  • Located in the 7th arrondissement of Paris, next to the Eiffel Tower.
  • Kitchen, washing machine, balcony and living rooms available.
Book Résidence Charles Floquet here

Residence Charles Floquet Paris Room Residence Charles Floquet Paris Living Area

Bonus: Gardette Park Hotel

Although I normally recommend staying within the first 10 arrondissements, this is one of my exceptions.

Due to the family-friendly, quiet neighborhood and the park and playground located right across the street, The Gardette Park Hotel is worth the recommendation.

  • Located in the 11th arrondissement, right on the border of the 3rd arrondissement.
  • Close to public transportation.
  • Free Breakfast available.
Book Gardette Park Hotel here

Gardette Park Hotel Room Gardette Park Hotel Terrace

1.2 Couples

Look at a list of “The Most Romantic Cities in the World” and 9 times out of 10, Paris will be ranked #1. The French “City of Love” is chock-full of some of the most romantic sites, streets, restaurants, and hotels. If you’ve never been to Paris as a couple, you’re in store for a wonderfully love-filled trip.

The best areas for couples to stay in Paris are:

  • 5th Arrondissement – Latin Quarter
  • 8th Arrondissement – Champs Elysées
  • 9th Arrondissement – Opera

This map shows you the areas, recommended for couples:

Handpicked accommodations for couples

It’s hard to go wrong when looking for a couple’s accommodation in Paris. Each neighborhood offers its own romantic ambiance, however, there are areas and hotels that will help set the mood for your perfect romantic holiday.

Hôtel Particulier Montmartre

A hideaway in Montmartre!

Take advantage of having all the privacy in the world while being just steps away from the best sights in Paris.

If you stay outside of the first 10 arrondissements, stay in the 18th Montmartre at Hotel Particulier Montmartre.

  • Lush greenery gardens surround the boutique hotel.
  • On-site restaurant and cocktail bar open for breakfast, lunch, tea time and dinner.
  • Less than 10 minutes walk to Sacré-Cœur.
Book Hôtel Particulier Montmartre here

Hotel Particulier Montmartre Paris Room Hotel Particulier Montmartre Paris Restaurant

Hotel Les Dames du Pantheon

Steps away from the Luxemburg Gardens with beautiful views of the Pantheon, Hotel Les Dames du Pantheon is a couple’s dream hotel.

Lush colored walls and 19th-century charm, make this the most romantic stay in the Latin Quarter.

  • Each floor portrays famous Parisian women, including Edith Piaf, Juliette Gréco, and Belle Époque.
  • Only 450 meters from the Metro Stop.
  • Easy walk to Musée d’Orsay, the Musée du Louvre and Sainte Chapelle.
Book Hôtel Les Dames du Panthéon here

Hôtel Les Dames du Panthéon Terrace View Hôtel Les Dames du Panthéon Room

Holiday Inn Paris – Notre Dame

When you have so many boutique hotels to compete with, it’s hard to be a fan of American chain hotels. The rooftop at the Holiday Inn Paris – Notre Dame will change your mind.

The Holiday Inn is a comfortable, clean hotel in a great location in the Latin Quarter; but the real draw is the insane rooftop views.

  • Take in the view of the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, and the picturesque Paris skyline while sipping a bottle of wine from the lobby bar.
  • Only a 5-minute walk from Notre Dame.
  • One of my favorite secret hotels in Paris!
Book Holiday Inn Paris Notre Dame here

Holiday Inn Paris Notre Dame Terrace View Holiday Inn Paris Notre Dame Common Area

1.3 Luxury

If you’re looking for true luxury, the “Triangle d’Or” or Golden Triangle is the place to be in the 8th arrondissement. However…it’s Paris, you can find luxury hotels, restaurants, bars and shopping in every neighborhood all over the city.

  • 8th Arrondissements – Champs Elysées
  • 1st Arrondissement – Heart of Paris
  • 6th Arrondissements – St. Germain

This map shows you the areas, recommended for Luxury Travelers:

Handpicked accommodations for luxury

Paris is luxury, and for luxury travelers, there’s no shortage of accommodations.

Four Seasons Hotel George V

You may have spotted Hotel George V in a few different movies over the years, as it’s the quintessential Parisian hotel.

The hotel is located in the 8th arrondissement, right off the Champs-Élysées and near the city’s most upscale shopping quarter. The stunning views, Michelin dining, and swanky amenities make Hotel George V one of the most romantic hotels in the city.

This means as well it is an easy walk to the Eiffel Tower and L’Arc de Triomphe. Personally, this is our favorite areas in the city.

Book Four Seasons Hotel George V here

Four Seasons Hotel George V Paris Room