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Insta-Q&A: Rooms in Paris for La Famille

Scott Vogel

Today's Insta-Q&A question comes from a reader who's trying to find a reasonably priced hotel in Paris that can comfortably house a family. If you have some advice for Allison from Millersville, by all means post a comment. And if you have a question yourself, e-mail us at travelqa@washpost.com.

She writes: "We want to stay 3 nights in Paris but I am having trouble finding an affordable room for a family of 5 (three elementary school kids). Most places, you pay for two rooms. Do you know any affordable hotels with family rooms?"

Just finding an affordable hotel room in the French capital is a tall enough order these days, but finding one for a family of five? We turned to our pal in the French tourism office, Marion Fourestier, who had some ideas that bargain hotel hunters should keep in mind, regardless of their party size.

One resource, of course, is the Paris Tourist Office Web site, though if you're interested in finding out which hotels have triple, quadruple rooms or suites, you'll need to request a hard copy of the hotel guide at info.us@franceguide.com. (The Web site doesn't currently allow you to search using room size parameters.)

Another small group of affordable hotels you might consider is one called Les Relais de Paris, which has properties all over town, some with rooms just over 100 euros per night.

To really save money, you'll need to stay a week, in which case you can rent apartments and other residences (most don't allow less than a week's stay). Further information is available at the Aparthotels section of the tourist office Web site. This is really the cheapest way to go, unless of course you participate in an apartment exchange, whereby you trade your place here for one there. It's "very popular and usually works out all right," says Fourestier, although "some people probably don't like the thought of strangers in their home."

Anyone else know of any reasonably priced hotels in Paris that can accommodate a family? Or any reasonably priced hotels, for that matter?!

By Scott Vogel |  March 19, 2008; 7:16 AM ET  | Category:  Europe , Hotels , Insta-Q&A , Scott Vogel
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Citadines is a great chain of Aparthotels that offer reasonable apartments throughout France. www.citadines.com/
They do 2 and sometimes 3 bedroom apartments geared towards families.

(No I do not work for them).

Posted by: Rachelle in London | March 19, 2008 10:39 AM

Have you tried VRBO (Vacation Rental By Owner) at www.vrbo.com? We have found places in Greece and Puerto Rico that are nicer and much less expensive than hotels. Sometimes the owners live on the property and they are usually very helpful in finding the best local restaurants and attractions at good prices. Not to mention finding your way around the city! No, I don't work them either.

Posted by: Carole in DC | March 19, 2008 4:36 PM

Allison might want to check with a travel consultant who specializes in France and/or family travel. There are several hotels in Paris with family rooms/duplexes that can accommodate a family of five. Rates depend on the dates of travel but are reasonable given that it's Paris and they're a family of five.

Posted by: Erika Christ, Viva Europa Travel | March 19, 2008 6:50 PM

I second the vote for VRBO - check these, they do not specify 1 week rental: #47170, 140561, 28271, and 90516. We had a huge apt for our group of 7 in Paris and it made the trip - having a place where adults could chill while kids slept, or played, and somewhere to eat breakfast so we didn't have to break the bank eating out three meals a day. Most of those that I mentioned above also take payment in $ - and you know how huge that is these days!

Posted by: Liz | March 20, 2008 10:53 AM

Your best bet is probably the Novotel chain (www.novotel.com) who have around 19 hotels in Paris that can generally sleep two children, though many are happy to install a third z-bed.

The chain of Campanile hotels are more motel style but nice and clean and you can often get two adjoining rooms, one triple, one double - and the price is really low. There are quite a few in the suburbs of Paris with easy metro travel to the centre.

Posted by: Catherine Van de Wiele | March 31, 2008 9:34 AM

I am from Washington, but now I live in Paris. I have a friend who rents an apartment to tourists. It is huge by French standards. 2 full bedrooms, one of them with a sleeping loft. The living room has a pull out couch. It is on a quiet street in the heart of the Marais. I have put friends here before. The only problems are: ONE bathroom and it is on the top floor with no elevator, 98 steps up! You can see it at
http://www.blondeauandco.com/index.php and NO, I don't get a cut.

Posted by: Jim | April 15, 2008 12:02 PM

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