Both Sides of the Seine

Both Sides of the Seine


French Property Insider

February 5, 2009
Paris, France

Bonjour French Property Insider Subscriber,

Today’s issue looks both ‘right’ and ‘left’ to "Rive Droite" and "Rive Gauche," the two sides of the Seine that are often seen as distinctly different from one another. Is that true? We’re not so sure. Find out why one chooses to live on the ‘right’ vs the ‘left’ or why not and how they differ and how they don’t.

Friday we signed the "Acte de Vente" on "Le Palace des Vosges" — our very own Fractional Ownership property in the Place des Vosges, Paris’ best address. Read the report to keep you up-to-date on how it’s progressing.

Last Sunday we had a successful conference call for FPI readers to discuss the predictions for property prices in France for 2009. Read a synopsis of the discussion in today’s issue plus download a recording of the one-hour long call to hear it all for yourself (plus tune in to past conference calls).

There’s news from our favorite currency specialist, Moneycorp as well as articles from our associate publications. All that’s in today’s issue, plus properties on both banks of the Seine, auction information and more.

For next week, look forward to Carnival Time in Nice: from February 13 to March 1, 2009. This is the 125th year that the celebration is held, with the key moments of the corsi carnavalesques and the famous battles of flowers. The entertaining and pretty parades include the papier maché or flower floats, street performers and musical groups. Next week’s FPI will have more to report after a visit I’m making a visit to l’Institut de Français in Villefranche sur Mer, Nice and points around the Côte d’Azur this coming weekend…so stay tuned.

A bientôt,

Adrian Leeds
Adrian LeedsEditor, French Property Insider
Email: [email protected]

P.S. Don’t forget that Tuesday, February 10th, is the monthly Parler Paris coffee gathering, "Après Midi," 3 to 5 p.m. at La Pierre du Marais. We hope to see you there! Visit Apres Midi for more information:

P.P.S. Be sure to visit our newest vacation rental studio apartment at Parler Paris Apartments (renovated and decorated by Martine di Matteo)…"Les Ivoires de Montmartre!": Les Ivoires de Montmartre,

Volume VII, Issue 6, February 5, 2009

In this issue:

* Purchase of Le Palace des Vosges a Done Deal
* French Property Conference Call A Success
* Still Time To Save Hundreds of Dollars
* What’s the Difference Between Left and Right?
* Left Brain vs. Right Brain in Paris
* The Latest Fractional Property Offerings
* Excellent Opportunity for Investing in French Property
* How the US Dollar is Doing: Currency Update from Moneycorp
* Preivew the Nex Notaires’ Auction
* Hot Property Picks: Go Right Then Left
* How You Can Obtain a Mortgage in France
* Parler Paris Apartments: Les Ivoires de Montmartre
* Additional Conferences in the Works
* Parler Paris Après-Midi: When and Where We Meet Next
* Managing Your FPI Subscription
* Subscribers Receive Discount on Insider Paris Guides

Dear Lovers of Place des Vosges…

I am pleased to tell you we officially completed the purchase of our newest fractional property “Le Palace des Vosges” on Friday, January 30th at the office of our Notaire.

After congratulations all around, our focus now turns to the renovation. We look forward to presenting you with the most exciting, elegant and functional fractional opportunity in one of the best locations in Europe – the Place des Vosges, 4th arrondissement, Paris, France.


is coming w
eek, we will review the plans with our architect Derek Bush and our fabulous interior designer, Martine di Matteo. Of course, we’ll update all the apartment’s basics for you – we’ll replace all the windows and doors, update the electric and plumbing and add new flooring. Plus, we’ll renovate the two en-suite bathrooms, create a warm, open kitchen and add a completely new ‘powder room.’

The real magic, though, will come from the space itself. Marine’s elegant design capitalizes on the apartment’s impressive volume and rich history. We envision a "palatial" environment that won’t sacrifice comfort or functionality and create just the right warm and friendly home in the heart of Paris.

The least expensive of the shares are still available, and they’re quite a
bargain. Yes, the general economic conditions are troubling, but
property – especially in the center of the City of Light – is always
desirable, particularly the Place des Vosges. Real estate associated with
Place des Vosges is most likely to increase in value with each passing
year – there is simply nothing quite as historic or as beautiful as Place
des Vosges anywhere in Paris!

We look forward to updating you on this exciting offering – and we hope
that you will consider purchasing a share in the near future. If you have
any questions, please contact either of us at any time.

Adrian Leeds

For more information and to reserve your share, visit or
contact Mary Ellen Gallagher at [email protected].

Forecasting French Property for 2009
By Adrian Leeds

February 1, 2009, about 20 FPI readers tuned into our conference call on the subject of "Forecasting French Property for 2009." With me on the call from our team was John Rule, Rental and Mortgage Manager, and Mary Ellen Gallagher, Search Consultant. The following is a brief synopsis, however, you may listen to the call in its entirety by clicking here:

In opening the discussion, we noted that we had obtained the latest property price statistics from three sources:


Important to understand before looking at the statistical information is
how the prices reported can be up to 50% less than the true market
value. Read the preface at

Also, before reviewing the statistics, we noted that we must separate
what’s happening on the property market in the U.S. from what we are
experiencing in France. France is a different market entirely and is not
feeling the crisis as seriously as is the U.S. Why? Because the French
banks never took the same kind of risks, the French do not live on credit
and on top of it all, they have a huge safety net that protects many from
losing their jobs and provides social security benefits that add a cushion
in lean times.

The latest figures for France have been recently published at * A pdf file of the January 2009 "Note de
Conjoncture" newsletter is available for download at:

The document explains (in French), that while prices on the average in
France are down about 5%, Paris remains stable with growth of 7%.
From the charts on France, it is clear that not all parts of the country are
experiencing downturns and that in comparison to the U.S. and Britain,
has not suffered near the loss in property values.

On the Paris property scene, prices have continued to increase as of
third quarter, but showing prices through 4th quarter
is showing more of a downturn. Still, central Paris is holding strong
while prices on lesser quality property is softening about 5%. Paris is
still Paris — a world class city with a large international residency and
the highest tourism in the world. Paris can’t be built up or out and
therefore the product is finite.

Does that make it good time to purchase property in France? Yes! With /> the Euribor as low as 2.09, interest rates on mortgag
es have
plummeted. The rate of exchange has been stable — under $1.30 to the
euro. Coupled with lower property prices and rentals remaining strong,
yes…now is a great time to jump in!

How to choose your best investment property? Their recommendation
and ours for investing in property is just what one would expect: 1.
location, location, location, 2. evaluate the price trend of a particular
geographic area and seek a strong upward trend and 3. only purchase
good quality property that fits the first two requirements.

How to budget for your purchase? Allow 30% cash for the downpayment
and closing costs plus 2000€ per square meter for proper renovation.

All those we know who own in Paris are happy with their purchase and
their rental returns…while most of those who waited for this moment
(low interest rates and lower rate of exchange) lost their savings in the
stock market and in other ways and is having difficulty now having
enough money to invest as they had hoped.

The point is…better late than never and now is an even better moment
than before!

Editor’s Note: To listen to any past conference calls, go to:


Living and Investing in France Real Estate Conference
March 21-22, 2009 New Orleans

There is nothing else you can do in less time and as inexpensively to learn all you need to learn to make your dream to live and invest in France come true. Produced by Adrian Leeds and John Howell is the 23rd conference of the series, which was the first ever of its kind to be offered both in Paris and the United States. Take advantage of this two-day power-packed conference with expert speakers from France, Europe and the U.S…and these two days of conference activities include the coffee breaks, the cocktail and five course dinner at Tujague’s(!).

Reference materials and a tote bag filled with FREE gifts from Paris!

If you register now, you can SAVE $100 off the registration fee. And when you bring along your spouse, partner or friend, you can SAVE AN ADDITIONAL $200! Plus, if you bring a third person, we’ll EXTEND THE SECOND PERSON DISCOUNT!

Living and Investing in France Real Estate Conference
March 21-22, 2009, New Orleans

For more information visit or email: [email protected]

Left Bank vs. Right Bank: What’s the Difference?

WhyGo Paris

Paris, you hear talk of the “Left Bank” and “Right Bank” all the time – and you’re probably well aware of what both terms technically refer to. But beyond being one side or the other of the Seine River, what are the connotations of something being on the Left or Right Bank? Are there generalizations that can be made about the neighborhoods that are included in each of those designations? Is one “bank” better for accommodation options, or restaurant choices, or night clubs, or sight-seeing?

The short answer is that there are definitely distinctions which can be made about the two sides of the Seine, and reasons why many long-time travelers to Paris prefer one over the other. Residents have their reasons for choosing to live on one “bank,” too, but those reasons may not be as relevant to a tourist in Paris. So in this article I’m going to focus on the things about the Left Bank vs. the Right Bank which are of interest to people visiting Paris.

Left Bank

The Left Bank, called “La Rive Gauche” in French, is on the southern side of the Seine and encompasses six arrondissements. It is by far the smaller section of Paris, and historically known as the artistic part of the city. This is where many of the famous writers and artists who once called Paris home – including Picasso, Matisse, and Hemingway – once lived, because it used to be that this was the part of the city that was much cheaper (always a plus for starving artists!). Those days are mostly gone, however, as the Left Bank boasts as many high-end apartments, restaurants, and bars as the Right Bank…


Right Bank

Paris’ Right Bank, to the north of the river, is the larger “bank” and also the more traditionally upper crust. Back when the Left Bank was where struggling creative souls could find kinship (not to mention cheap rent), the Right Bank was where the city’s wealthy residents lived and played. Although this distinction is less applicable today now that rents on the Left Bank have skyrocketed, the Right Bank is still where you’re going to find the majority of Paris’ big businesses and banks – as well as most of the big tourist attractions…

Editor’s Note: To read the full article, go to


Living on the Left Bank vs Residency on the Right Bank: Is it really all that different?
By Adrian Leeds

The River Seine divides Paris in what seems like North and South, but because the river actually runs North/South with a singular East/West stretch making a ‘crook’ in the turn, Paris has a ‘left’ side and a ‘right’ side.

The sides are distinctly different, if not obvious on the surface, but anyone who has lived in Paris for any length of time has learned how each district takes on a different personality and how the Left Bank is synonymous with the creative arts, while the Right Bank is synonymous with business and industry. Think of it as the OPPOSITE of "Right Brain" being the creative/emotional side vs "Left Brain," the logical/ordered side.

From the standpoint of residency, you will find the differences more about each neighborhood than about "Right Bank" vs "Left Bank." For example, the Marais (3rd and 4th), Saint-Germain-des-Près (6th) and the Latin Quarter (5th) all have a lot of appeal to tourists, as well as an international residency and enough bohemian qualities to make them all a bit more "Right Brain" if not on the "Left Bank." All of these districts have old buildings, lots of history, quaint restaurants, boutiques, art galleries, museums and cultural things to do and see.

However, each is also distinctly different, run by different administrations, with different political leanings and are made-up of a different mix of residents. You may find that while the Latin Quarter appeals to students and academicians (this is where education in Europe has its roots), Saint-Germain-des-Prés is steeped in literary history (Sartre and Beauvoir) and therefore attracts bibliophiles and those who can afford its steep prices. Le Marais is home to a mix of ethnic and eccentric groups taking on a totally different flavor and gaining in value and importance as it gentrifies from its previous state as a slum.

The chic 7th around the Eiffel Tower isn’t much different than the chic area around the Champs-Elysées (8th)– the 7th with lots of government buildings and the 8th with a fair share of office buildings. Both boast of stately Haussmannian architecture and a scarcity of "small trades" unlike the 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th.

As you venture to the outer districts, you will find similarities there, too, between the right and left bank districts. The 19th and 20th on the Right Bank which are home to large parks and cemeteries can also be said for the 14th and 15th on the Left Bank, both home to the same. Have a look at the "village" of Montmartre (18th) and compare it to the "village" of La Buttes aux Cailles (13th) — both with their own charm nestled in among hills or high rises.

The point to these comparisons is that while many may think Paris can be distinguished from the right or from the left, my point of view is that it’s more a question of division of administration and make-up of each district’s population that really changes one’s experience as a resident.

For a vacation renter, it’s another point of view entirely as their main concerns are to have good proximity to the sights, good transportation, access to amenities (restaurants, night life, etc.) and have an ambiance to which they can relate. Is it "right?" Or is it "left?"

Fractional Property Offerings from French Property Fractional

If you are interested in traditional fractional ownership properties currently offered by our Fractional Ownership partners, see below:

Place des Vosges  ***NEW!!!



Paris: La Rsidence Luxembourg

Le Petit Tresor Paris: LE PETIT TRESOR
Maison Bleue Languedoc-Roussillon: MAISON BLEUE

French Property ‘Offering Window of Opportunity’

Assetz Property News Service

While some may see the grey cloud of recession looming above, others are looking at the silver lining. In the foreign property market, news of price drops in France and Spain could deter some who had once dreamed of a real estate portfolio bathed in sun. However, French property consultant VEF takes a different view of the global economic slowdown by suggesting that now could in fact be the right time to buy..

"There are just so many super properties now available to buyers; many at incredibly low prices, so not to buy now would be very foolish," a spokesperson for the company stated.

According to the firm, mortgages in the country are still available to those keen to purchase and there are many that aren’t just looking at the investment potential of French property, but also the opportunity to enjoy a change of lifestyle…

Editor’s Note: To read the full article, go to



MoneycorpUS Data 2-2-09

The Dollar closed up against the Euro last week, posting its best month against the single currency since October as evidence of a prolonged slump on both sides of the Atlantic added to the greenback’s safe-haven appeal. Reaction was relatively muted after the Fed left interest rates steady at near zero and said it was prepared to buy long-term Treasury debt if that would help improve credit conditions. However, the Dollar rose against a basket of currencies on Friday after government data showed the US economy contracted at its fastest pace in nearly 27 years, but by significantly less than expected in the fourth quarter. The key release in the US this week will be Friday’s January employment data with further deterioration expected and downside risk on revisions, while the unemployment rate is seen on the rise again.

Visit the FPI Web site and click on the link on the left panel or click here for Currency Convertor by Moneycorp Global Money Services: Moneycorp Currency Conversion Tool for up to the minute conversions of all major currencies.

Compare currency values easily and quickly by visiting: Convertor by Moneycorp Global Money Services/Currency Online.asp

Charts: The charts are updated
ry ten seconds.

The prices shown are "inter bank" exchange rates and are not the rates that you will be offered by Moneycorp. Your rate will be determined by the amount of currency that you are buying. Please speak with an Moneycorp dealer or your consultant for a live quotation.

Previewing the Next Notaires’ Property Auction

Notaires de Paris
Place du Châtelet
12 avenue Victoria
Paris 1st

Additional information on Les Ventes aux Enchères des Notaires can be found on the Web site at Though the site has a button for an English version, it isn’t necessarily reliable.

To read Schuyler Hoffman’s article about the property auctions in Paris, click on:

March 3, 2009
Beginning at 2:00 p.m. the following properties will be auctioned off:



3 Rooms 93m² 107 rue La Fayette – 75010 – PARIS
Starting Bid: 294 800 €
Deposit: 58 960 €




2 Rooms 58,77m² 74 rue notre Dame des Champs 75006 – PARIS
Starting Bid: 459 000 €
Deposit: 91 800 €




CHATEAU 600m² Lieudit Le Village – 89300 – LOOZE
Starting Bid: 429 000 €
Deposit: 85 800 €




Next Auction 3 March, 2009 (There are also some commercial properties up for auction this go round. If interested, please visit the Web site.)


Each week French Property Insider features a range of properties which we believe are on the market at the time of writing. These properties are featured in order to give readers a sample of what is currently available and a working example of prices being asked in various regions of France and districts of Paris.

As we are not a real estate agency. These properties do not constitute a sales listing. For those readers seriously interested in finding property in Paris or France, you can retain our services to do the whole thing for you. For more information, visit

This week we focus on some interesting properties found in the center of Paris, half on the Right Bank half on the Left Bank.

***Paris, 3rd arron.: Studio, approx. 30m²

Studio w/two rooms located in the 3rd arrondissement, by Metro Arts Et Métiers, on a pedestrianized street. On the 3rd floor, renovated, façade of building in good condition. Living room with two large windows facing the street gives lots of natural light. Parquet flooring throughout, bedroom with one large window facing the street also giving lots of natural light, shower with W.C, small separate kitchen with window facing courtyard.

Asking Price: 300 000€ + 2.5% Finder’s Fee

***Paris, 4th arron.: Studio, approx. 17m²

Discover this adorable apartment in Paris’s 4th arrondissement, located on a very famous street in the Marais. Close by and 5 minutes on foot from the apartment is the tree planted Place du Bourg Tibourg, with a typically Parisian gathering area, and 2 minutes from the shops of Rue de Rivoli. The apartment includes a large living area with open kitchen, mezzanine with bedroom, and bathroom.

Asking Price: 192 000€ + 2.5% Finder’s Fee


***Paris, 5th arron.: 1-bedroom, approx. 38m²

Quiet ground floor apartment with lots of charm and light. Fully equipped and large furniture included. New washer and dryer, great bathroom, 220 and 110 volts, complete kitchen, beautiful fixtures included.

Asking Price: 250 000€ + 2.5% Finder’s Fee




***Paris, 6th arron.: 1-bedroom, approx. 32m²

The Rue du Cherche Midi is one of Paris’s greatest pockets, and you could live right in the middle of it! Discover this recently renovated 4th floor apartment in the heart of Paris’s most sought after district. All of the necessary features are here, with a modern and contemporary touch – open kitchen with breakfast bar, spot lights, living room, small bedroom, classy bathroom and separate WC. Step outside to grab a bit to eat in one of the charming eateries of the neighborhood, or pick up an apple tart from the famous Poilane bakery! Perfect for vacation rental or as a pied-à-terre.

Asking Price: 290 000€ + 2.5% Finder’s Fee 


French Propety LoanWhen you make a purchase as important as a piece of real estate in a foreign country, you want to know that you can trust the people you are dealing with. Adrian Leeds has developed a network of professionals that meet only the highest of standards. With the expertise and experience of Adrian and her team, you can depend on getting the best advice and support to feel completely confident that you are making an informed investment decision.

Let us help you secure a mortgage in France at a competitive interest rate. Visit for more information or contact [email protected]


1 square meter = 10.7639104 square feet

1 hectare = 2.4710538 acres

For more conversions, refer to:


Parler Paris ApartmentsWelcome to your home in Paris. Home is how you will feel in a private apartment in Paris that has the "seal of approval" from Parler Paris Apartments and me, Adrian Leeds.

Parler Paris Apartments offers high quality accommodations to make your stay in the City of Light as enjoyable and memorable as possible. We at Parler Paris know each and every apartment owner or manager personally, and stand behind the quality of those we represent. We understand your needs and desires, all the small details that make a rental apartment a warm and welcoming home ­ and a much better lternative to an impersonal hotel!

Parler Paris Apartments is administered and serviced by the same great team as Parler Paris, French Property Insider and French Property Consultation. You can trust that Parler Paris Apartments and all those with whom it is associated will do their best for your 100% guaranteed satisfaction.

SPOTLIGHT APARTMENT: Les Ivoires de Montmartre

Rue des Trois Frères, 18th Arrondissement Montmartre

Studio, Sleeps up to 4

This bright and beautiful studio apartment has been freshly redesigned and renovated with the utmost attention to detail. Located on a quiet one-way street which was made famous by the hit movie “Le Fabuleux Destin d’Amelie Poulain” (yes that Amelie!), it promises you a stay to remember.

As a very spacious studio, the apartment is well laid-out to feel very large. From the high-security front door one enters into a small foyer, which connects to both the bathroom and the bedroom area. The comfortable Queen-sized bed (which can become 2 single bed), is framed with ample storage space. High quality linens adorn the bed. This bedroom area can be separated from the living room by drawing a heavy decorative curtain, to span the width of the apartment — great for groups us

ing both sleeping spaces…

For more information and to reserve your stay in Paris now, visit or email: [email protected]/parlerparis

Planning More Living and Investing in France Conferences

Sunday, April 26, 2009
The International Law Partnership
The Vaults, Holborn Hall
193-197 High Holborn
London WC1V 7BD
For more information, email [email protected]/london

Sunday, May 31, 2009
Chez Jenny
3, Boulevard du Temple
75003 Paris
For more information, email [email protected]/paris

Parler Paris Aprs Midi

Parler Paris Apres Midi

Come for a drink and to meet and chat with other readers in Paris…

The next gathering is February 10, 2009 and every second Tuesday of the month (except August).



Managing Your French Property Insider Subscription is Easy!

French Property InsiderWe receive many emails from French Property Insider Subscribers who want to change their email address, or update personal information. But did you know that you can make these changes yourself?

It’s easy…

1. Go to

2. Click on "Manage Subscription." You’ll find it under the "Subscribers Only" section in the sidebar.

3. Enter your username and password.

4. On the Welcome Page, go to "Manage Your Account" and click on "Change Password/Edit Profile"

5. Once you’ve made the changes, scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on "Save Profile."


Of course, we’re always happy to help, so if you do need assistance, send an email to [email protected]


To access password protected pages: click on any of the links on the left panel of the home page of under "Subscriber’s Only," then type in your personal username and password.

Past issues of FPI are available on the website. You will find the
"Past Issues" link on the left under "Subscribers Only" or by going to

To receive your free French Leaseback Report or the Paris Property
Report, click on

We wanted better guides, So we wrote them!

insider paris guidesInsider Paris Guides are written for people who love the City of Light. You’ll get a Paris insider perspective on Restaurants… Making a Life… Black Culture… Expat Writers…and the newest guide, Practical Paris!

French Property Insider subscribers receive a discount of 10% off any guide and up to 25% off the entire purchase (if two

or more guides
are purchased at the same time). Here’s how it works:

1. Click on special Web link we give you just for FPI subscribers.

2. Then order one or more guide(s) and use the promotion
code "ED762." This promotion code gives you 10% off your total

3. If you order two or more guides, then an additional 15% will be
taken off automatically. There is no promotion code needed.

Here is the special "coupon" Web link just for you:


If you’re not a regular reader of the Parler Paris daily e-letter, and would like to be, simply enter your e-mail address here (it’s free!):

Copyright 2010, Adrian Leeds®
Adrian Leeds Group, LLC,



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