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The Lost GenerationThe Lost Generation made their home on the Left Bank, and St. Germain was one of their prime neighborhoods. You see the history throughout the streets of Saint-Germain and the surrounding neighborhoods. One of the most famous establishments in this neighborhood is Les Deux Magots — a cafe frequented by Hemingway, Picasso, Dali, and, well, the rest of the cast of Midnight in Paris. 😉 Being a huge Camus fan, I decided to stop at the venerable absurdist’s favorite hotspot — Cafe de Flore. While these famed cafes charge far more for a cup of coffee than seems appropriate, it’s nice just to enjoy the atmosphere and think about all that these walls have seen.
Where to Stay: Hotel Villa d’EstréesThis was also the first time in all my trips to Paris that I’ve been able to stay in Saint-Germain. We stayed at the lovely four-star Hotel Villa d’Estrées, a hotel that I enjoyed immensely and highly recommend. If you are looking to stay in Paris, the Hotel Villa d’Estrées is a great choice, but also you also find great hotels that are more affordable. The location was absolutely perfect — a 30-second (!) walk from the Saint-Michel metro stop on Place Saint Andre and a short stroll from Notre-Dame, Rue de Buci, the banks of the Seine, and the main drag of Rue Saint-Germain. Though it’s next door to the neighborhood Irish pub, it stays quiet. Hotels in popular Paris neighborhoods like Saint-Germain are often prone to pitfalls — tiny rooms, creaky elevators, spotty internet, the toilet in a separate time zone from the sink. This hotel had none of those pitfalls — it was simple, elegant, and just lovely. The staff were very friendly and helpful, and I felt very safe staying there. Beautifully decorated, but not gimmicky. Tasteful, but far from boring. And so delightfully Parisian. If this had to be my full-time Paris abode, I think I would do just fine here. Especially because the internet was great. I couldn’t have asked for a better time in Saint-Germain this time around — or in Paris, for that matter. More on Paris:
- Solo Female Travel in Paris — Is it Safe?
- 33 Most Famous Streets in Paris
- How to Plan a Day Trip to Paris from London
- How to Spend a Layover in Paris
- 100 Travel Tips for Paris
- The Art of the Chilled Out Trip to Paris
- Best Area to Stay in Paris: Neighborhoods, Hotels, and More
Essential Info: Rates at Villa d’Estrées start at 204 euros per night. You can find the best prices on other accommodation in Paris here. I never travel without travel insurance and always use and recommend World Nomads.Many thanks to the Villa d’Estrées for hosting me in Paris. All opinions, as always, are my own.
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24 thoughts on “Living the Parisian Life in Saint-Germain-des-Pres”
What an absolutely charming part of Paris! It absolutely embodies everything I thought about the city. If Paris wasn’t already on my bucket list it would be now!
I am fascinated by the Lost Generation. I will have to add a couple of these places to my list for when I finally make it to Paris. 🙂
I think I pretty much love everywhere in Paris! Great pics 🙂
I was only able to spend a day in Paris back when I was 22. Even though it was cold and rainy, it was still an incredible experience. Oh, how this post makes me want to go back!
I took a class at my university called 2Paris and the Art of Urban Life.” It was supposed to count as my Humanities Gen Ed, but we used the Green Guide as our textbook and the profs pretty much just reminisced about living in St. Germaine and frequenting cafés.
St. Germaine looks like such a neat area of Paris! I visited the city at 16 too but haven’t been back since. Hopefully soon!
Thanks so much for this blog entry. I am spending a few days in Paris in April and wanted to see something different from my last visit to the city.
Of course I love Paris but what I never get tired of are your magnificent photographs, of anywhere!
Aww, thank you, Leyla!
Hat tip for the ‘Midnight In Paris’ mention – re-watched that film AGAIN this week, and with scenery such as this how could anyone blame me?
Not too familiar with The Lost Generation, however, so looks like I’ve some reading to catch up with.
Dale, I recommend you read The Sun Also Rises. It’s my favorite book of all time and it captures The Lost Generation like no other.
Looks like you got a nice hotel room:)
I stayed in somethin more budgetty on my last trip to Paris, République Hotel near Place de la République. It’s close to the subway, very clean and we payed about €50/night/person.
Would definitely recommend it!
I love this area too (which sort of inspired my blog name)..would be my dream to live there someday!
I love the name of your blog, Tiffany!
We stayed in Saint-Michel and really enjoyed the area, though the hotel (while charming in its way) had a small dark room and a narrow spiral staircase which was almost the undoing of me.
Saint-Germain was my favorite part in Paris too! I loved finding a random book and then sitting in a cafe half watching half reading.
I love all these shots! Such quintessential Paris!
I do not know a whole lot about Paris, but now I feel like I have gotten a windows view into the remarkable city. It was amazing to see it from an artists point of view. I am excited to see more of what you discover.
The small cafes are great, but if you need to pinch a few pennies try the local patisserie (pastry shop); ie where the locals go. You can get a cup of coffee, and a pastry on the go for a little less. If you don’t want to stand in a long line go after 8am.
Great tip, Nancy. Thanks!
I used to study in Paris and I used to just love to go to St. Germain to hang out with my friends either for coffee or drinks! Such good memories, thank you!
I’ve been to Paris 10 times. And would you believe, I recognized every photo in your pos t!
Paris is ok. Awe-struck Americans and Australians – refugees from the New World – stroll down the dog-shit strewn boulevards desperately seeking anything old like heliotropic Lara Crofts. People kiss, but then again people kiss in Mogadishu. And the food’s good yeah, but it’s 50 Euros per head and served by a surly middle-aged plate-jockey with something wrong with his eyebrows. Knowingly-twee Parisien culture is enough to drive a good man into the arms trade too.