Countdown to European Summer, 2013 / opinions & musings / travel guides / Uncategorized

Love is in the Air (bnb): Paris Apartments

So I’m not going to sugarcoat it: I stayed up until 3:00am last night with my new obsession.

I know that I shouldn’t, but every single time I open the computer it just draws me in.

It’s an addiction; and it’s taking over my life.

No, I don’t need help.


I remember hearing about it and thought it was one of those e-fads that was going to melt away with time; but after using airbnb in a desperate, last minute attempt to find a place to stay in the capital city of Sri Lanka, of all places–and it turned out to be the coolest place we stayed on the entire trip.

So when the family decided that a trip to Paris was in the cards this summer…guess which site I immediately booted up?

After copious amounts of research (aka squealing and ooohing aahhing), I have deduced the following:

#1. The population of homeowners with the greatest flair for interior design (I feel like there’s a better way to say this, but I just can’t figure it out)—definitely resides in Sweden. Of course, this is no surprise. But by far the best apartments are in Paris. Paris. Paris, Paris. Of course, it’s not very practical to pay 350 USD a night for a stay in some French designer’s penthouse, so we narrowed down the options to the ones below.

All of them are under $150USD; which is about what you would pay for a stay in a medium-range hotel in the city; and for all of them you get a kitchen, washer/dryer, blah blah blah essentially your own pad in Paris. 

Here’s where we’re asking for help! I’ve included pictures and details about the FIVE apartments that we’re choosing amongst, as well as some key details. Which one do you think we should choose? All suggestions & opinions welcome!

One. (Love the decor, but it’s more Portland than Paris, & my sister & I would stay in kids’ rooms! Weird?)

Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.59.07 AM Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.59.01 AM Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.58.46 AMTwo. (Drool–look at that kitchen! But small, quite small! Do you think the four of us would go stir-crazy?)

Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.59.39 AM Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.59.33 AMThree. (Love the modern furniture & the windows, but would it lack a cozy, warm family feel?)

Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.56.44 AM Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.56.36 AM Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.56.23 AM Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.56.12 AMFour. (Swoon! Just look at this place! The ceilings? The exposed beams, the room dividers? But it’s a bit out our budget: is the amazing interior detail worth the extra dough?)

Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.40.20 AM Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.40.35 AM Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.40.43 AMFive. (A plain Jane, but a good price, in a good area & suitable for all intents & purposes. Should we go with a safe choice like this?)

Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.41.28 AM Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 2.41.17 AM

What do you guys think? Which one should my family pick for our week-long stay in Paris this summer? Should we go with modern or rustic, sprawling or cozy?

I’d love to hear opinions & votes in the comments! I want to message all of these owners ASAP because I’m afraid that they’ll get booked out fast (neurotic, I know, neurotic Stephanie)–& we haven’t even booked our plans tickets yet! Aiyah! So help a sister out, will ya?


11 thoughts on “Love is in the Air (bnb): Paris Apartments

  1. I would choose either three or five.
    The surrounding of option three is modern and comfortable. Judging from the pictures it does look a little bit cold. But with proper lighting(if they have that) and some laughter of a whole family, I think it won’t be too bad.
    Five looks more cozy(not so spacious?). It should be quite enjoyable to stay in that apartment. And look at that bookshelf lol so overloaded.

    sigh my dad INSISTS that airbnb is too dangerous(I can’t figure out the reasons) and eliminate that from my options.

    well, good luck with your trip. At least your parents are on your side about airbnb right? lol

  2. Haha why does option one still have a Christmas tree? I personally love the first and second options even though they are all beautiful places! I don’t know what it is about those two that seems more appealing to the eye and more comfortable to look at. Even though number two has a smaller kitchen, it seems very European-esque and homey. The last couple of options are great too but it’s too modern and I’d prefer something less modern while in Paris. Just my two cents! 🙂 But Paris- so exciting!

    • Haha I have no idea; I think it must have been around the holiday season when the photographs were taken. And I agree about the less-modern preference; I’m all for the ‘classic’ Paris experience of my dreams!

  3. Ive been to Paris a couple of times and I can assure you, you won’t be spending a lot time indoors especially in Springtime. If you do, then something is seriously wrong! Location is important, and also you don’t want an Apt that’s too tidy, which reflects on the personality of the owner. He/She may not take too kindly to things being misplaced or broken etc. Im a practical person, so I would suggest that you go with the last one which is the cheapest too? Im sure you’ve already done your research on what to do in Paris, but try and fit in time for the open markets. There are quite a few but I shall recommend the famous ones:

    For French Gourmet (I know food is close to your heart), go to Marche Richard Lenoir, with 2 alleys of great food that goes on for a km. It begins at Place de la Bastille, Boulevard Richard Lenoir 75011. Opens Thu/Sun

    For Bric a brac which I know you’re fond of, go to Marche de Montreuil, a bargains’ hunters delight. You can find a great variety of vintage stuff, antiques etc, huge place. Its at Avenue de la Porte de Montreuil 75012. Opens Sat, Sun and Mon
    Check out for specific details of other markets

    I enjoy reading your posts. Since Ive been here only 1.5 years, Im still getting to know Taipei. Enjoy your trip to Paris and see if you can take a day trip outside the city.


    • Thank you so much! I will definitely check out the guide, and grateful for your advice! Food AND vintage trawling are definitely two ways to my heart, so I’m going to check out the places you mentioned as soon as I get to Paris!

  4. How fun! I was looking to airbnb to find a flat in taipei for the summer, while I am living in Paris. Seems like we’re going opposite ways. Where are located all these beautiful places? You have to consider convenience and distance to metro station?

    • I’ve seen the listings of airbnb in Taiwan, definitely not as impressive as those in France, but I hope you find a place to stay (you’re coming this summer, I assume! Hope you visit some of my favorite places in the city during your time in Taipei!) And most of them are located in the 19th, by a huge park (?, I forget the name, I think Beauttes-Charmont?) I’ve heard it’s not the best/most-touristy district, but all apartments are fairly close to the Metro.

      • Buttes Chaumont is such a romantic place for picnics and lots of people go there in spring and summer. It’s uphill. A famous place to eat in the park is Rosa Bonheur (crowded on weekends) and Buttes Chaumont neighborhood has its own blog on wordpress: (only French I think)
        Once you’re at the metro station you should be by Montmartre in 20 minutes, at Notre Dame in 30 minutes.
        Our trip to Taiwan is about 15 years after I first came there to study Chinese, so I expect most things will be changed. I hope to rely on your blog to know about nice places!

      • Thank you so much!! I’m glad to hear some positive things about the place; I was worried because some people were saying that it may not be safe! Do you have any opinions on this? My parents are not very, ah, travel savvy 😉

      • I only go there on weekends and by day, but in Paris the idea is that as long as you’re not far from the metro and keep within its working hours (it closes at 1am), you’ll be okay. I would not advise to go clubbing into the night and come home by foot unless you’re in a group and not only girls. I guess the same could be said for many places. I’m not saying everyone in this neighborhood has lots of money and that you won’t find a noisy wino from time to time, but Parisians keep to themselves and wish no harm to visitors. You just need to know in advance that you’ll be in a very diverse neighborhood with lots of different communities. Feel free to send me any questions (or your family’s worries 😉 !)

So, any thoughts?

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