Are you ready to dream a little dream with me? And to perhaps make that dream a reality?
Today, I am very, very excited to share with you what I think is the perfect apartment vacation rental in the best neighborhood that Paris has to offer...Saint Germain des Prés.
What makes this particular apartment so special to me is that it is the home of someone whose taste quite a few of you have come to know and admire...that of my friend Anthony.
For Paris is where Anthony and his partner hang their hats - that is when they are not in Provence working on their amazing home renovation project!
As they have only very recently decided to start renting out their apartment, you will be one of the first to know of this address...one that Anthony calls a "petit endroit secret sous les toits de Paris" - yes, indeed...
I have long been a believer of renting out apartments rather than camping out at hotels. It gives you, the visitor, the opportunity to live entirely on your own schedule and more importantly, to have the irreplaceable experience of tapping into the usually unknown life of a local. As a travel writer, this was always my goal, to discover the true "esprit du lieu"...or spirit of place.
And what a spirit! Their apartment covers the entire top floor of a 17th century hôtel particulier (not to worry, each floor is private) in the heart of the 7th arrondissement.
Are you starting to get the sense that this is an exceptional pied à terre for all of your Paris sojourns? Good! Because it truly is...save that in France, pied à terre is usually a code-word for "tiny" and this apartment is an incredibly spacious 75 square meters (over 800 square feet)! Considering that many Parisian hotel rooms run in at around 15 square meters...well, you are smart enough to figure that one out on your own. ;)
There is everything that is needed in a true home away from home...wifi, full kitchen, dishwasher and laundry.
I know first-hand from when Anthony was renting out his previous village house that he prepares fantastically helpful lists of suggestions...you will have the key to hidden spots in the neighborhood that even Parisians don't know about! Plus, there is family just at hand should you need extra help. This is an extremely safe area and there is a digicode for entry to the building as well.
All one needs to do is just walk out the front door and enjoy - there is even a great antiquaire in the courtyard below. The Seine is a one and a half minute walk in one direction (!) with the Louvre and the Jardins des Tuileries just beyond. My personal "nothing bad could ever happen to you here" Le Bon Marché is a quick stroll in the opposite direction with Café de Flore and Les Deux Magots at a three minute hop! You could go every day...
And if you really felt the need to leave the cartier for some strange reason ;) the metro and bus are a five-minute walk away. Oh, and the bus is direct to both the Gare de Lyon and the Gare Montparnasse for those coming/going further afield.
The apartment is perfect for two people. There is one bedroom but also an office that is open to the living area and kitchen. A baby bed or small mattress can be set up in the office as needed but this will be not as comfortable as the fluffy bed in the main bedroom.
The design is a mix of antiques and modern - Anthony and his partner's signature. I think that the photos speak for themselves on that point, non? I will add that the beautiful original tomettes are quite unusual (this is Paris not Provence after all) and I love the texture of the wooden beams plus the sloped ceilings. The apartment is filled with light, has spectacular (and rare) views and is very quiet.
"Oh my," you might be thinking. "This all has to be wildly expensive." Now, really. Would I do that to you? That is not my style. And that is why I am so thrilled to share this address with you.
For you see, the Secret Paris in the 7th apartment is available to rent for 140 Euros ($160 USD at the time of writing) per night.
Is there a catch? That depends on how you look at it.
I did mention that the apartment is on the top of the building, yes? So that would be the sixth floor and there is not an elevator in this formerly private mansion. But...as anyone knows who loves Paris, if you want the views and if you want the light (crucial in la cité de la lumière!), then you have to be willing to walk a bit. Anthony has assured me that the flights are not too steep. And just think, it would be a carte blanche to have all of the croissants and Montrarchet Grand Cru (perhaps just not together) that you could desire! Trust me, it is worth it...
...because at the end of an amazing day in Paris, you could rest your weary but memory-filled head here while looking beyond to the night sky floating over the rooftops of your dreams...
If you are interested in renting this little bit of heaven, please contact Anthony directly at:
As always, I am only sharing this with you because I believe that it is amazing, just as I feel strongly that anyone who gets to have such a true Parisian experience is very fortunate. Enjoy and feel free to pass this along!
All photos courtesy of Anthony Lee Watson