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SPECIAL: What’s the oldest shopping street, but the hippest place to stay in Paris?


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Quiz: What’s the oldest shopping street in Paris?

No, it’s not rue Mouffetard. And no, not rue Cler, either. Think Les Halles. Think about when Les Halles was the central market of Paris. And think about when the rue Montorgueil was the western border of the massive market lined with fishmongers.

That’s all sadly gone, but rue Montorgueil isn’t! In fact, it is not only alive and well, it’s THRIVING and it’s HIP! And now you can take advantage of getting to know it well (with the help of Parler Paris Apartments).

Rue Montorgueil’s name translates to “Mount Pride” and was named after the hilly area on which the street developed in the district known as the “Sentier.” Some of the streets, such as rue Dussoubs and rue Saint-Sauveur, date back to the 11th-century. A few steps away near the Etienne Marcel Métro station is a medieval fortified tower known as the Tour Jean-sans-Peur, erected in the early 15th-century by “Fearless Jean,” the Duke of Burgundy, notorious for having assassinated his cousin, the Duke d’Orléans.

This is the heart of Paris — if you know the “escargot” of the city, then you know that the 2nd arrondissement is about as dead center as it gets — but it still manages to have ‘ye olde’ village-like atmosphere and be an easy walk to just about every important sight. Located just north of Châtelet-les-Halles, the district is also surrounded by transportation that takes you to all points of Paris and beyond within minutes.

Making this district your home-away-from-home is a smart move for anyone who loves to take in the sights, sounds and advantages of the activity along a pedestrian marketplace or who is a gourmet wishing to test out his culinary talents. This is where you will find some of the best meat, fish and produce markets in the city along with renowned pastry shops such as La Maison Stohrer, bistrots, cafés, bars and boutiques.

The streets surrounding rue Montorgueil are pedestrian, but buzzing with activity. This district is one of the more colorful in the city, bordered on the east by the once-but-quickly-becoming-hip Red Light District (rue Saint-Denis), on the south by Les Halles, on the west by the financial district (La Bourse) and on the north by the garment district (Le Sentier). Its mix of residents lends itself to an eclectic slice of Parisian life centering their affairs around the market street.

And now, Parler Paris Apartments offers three luxury properties in the Montorgueil/Sentier district so that you can get to know this very authentic part of the city.

NEWEST ON OUR ROSTER IS “LE BAIN NOIR!”

Rue Mandar, 2nd Arrondissement, Montorgueil, Two-Bedroom, Sleeps up to 6, 12 years and older

Le Bain Noir is the culmination of years of effort by its owner, who has painstakingly chosen each and every bit of the beautiful décor. The result is an elegant, eclectic and efficient apartment perfect for those wishing to have an authentic Parisian experience.

Located on rue Mandar, a pedestrian street which runs off rue Montorgueil, this second floor apartment makes a big statement. The principle room is spacious and comprises the dining and living rooms. From the small foyer, one enters into the dining room with a table for four that expands to seat six people and sits adjacent to colorful stained-glass windows that open to a small courtyard.

Further along is the living room with its two large windows looking onto the pedestrian street of rue Mandar. A contemporary sofa that converts into a bed for up to two people is served by a large, glass and wood hand-made coffee table. On the other side of the table is a classic Parisian fireplace under a gold-framed mirror. Three armchairs round out the seating space in this room, which also features a flat-screen television and DVD player.

Two of the features that make this part of the apartment so pleasant in which to be are the classical crown molding and the romantic lighting. The lighting is provided by clever use of numerous small lamps strategically placed throughout, creating a romantic ambiance that is subtle and enticing.

From the living room one enters the master bedroom and the site of the focal point of the apartment – “le bain noir”! This very unique “black tub” is actually part of the en suite bathroom but instead of a normal wall separating it from the master, it is surrounded on three sides by glass walls. The bedroom itself has a double bed, matching night tables and lamps, and a metal storage unit with shelves and hanging space.

A door leads to the en suite bathroom, which is where you actually enter le bain. For those wishing privacy, a blackout curtain can be drawn so that someone in the bathroom cannot see into the bedroom and vice versa. The bathroom also has a large shower, sink with vanity and heated towel rack. It also has another door from which to enter and exit, this time leading to the kitchen.

The kitchen is spacious and functional with all modern conveniences, including full-size fridge/freezer, full-size oven and stove, dishwasher, washing machine and all of the small appliances that you would expect. There is a table here too, for leisurely breakfasting or intimate dinners.

From the kitchen, one accesses the second bedroom and a powder room/toilet decorated with a painted bird motif you’ll find in other parts of the apartment.

The bedroom has a double bed, bookshelf, mirror, and a display case featuring a collection of antique French toys from years gone by.

Included with your stay is free access to the apartment’s WiFi connection as well as use of the telephone, which allows you to call land lines in over 100 countries as well as land lines and cell phones in the U.S. and Canada at no cost.

FOR A CHIC ARTIST’S TOUCH, YOU’LL LOVE THE SPACIOUS “LE SENTIER DE SOIE.”

Rue de Cléry, 2nd Arrondissement, Montorgueil, Two-Bedroom, Sleeps up to 5

Le Sentier de Soie is an artist’s creation whose touch is everywhere you turn.

Just two short blocks rue Montorgeuil, Le Sentier de Soie is situated on the second floor of a high standing well-maintained building with an elevator and boasts of a long and inviting balcony that is accessible from numerous points in the apartment.

This two-bedroom apartment is as large as some three and four-bedroom apartments. The living room and dining room are particularly spacious and the ceiling is higher than four meters throughout.  From the shared alcove entranceway, one first encounters the ‘grand salon,’ or living room, with many sculptures and other original works of art as well as a floor-to-ceiling bookcase filled with English language books. Just under the wall of books is a contemporary sofa that can seat at least six, accompanied by two glass coffee tables and two easy chairs. The room is also equipped with a flat-screen television and DVD player as well as an iPod dock.

Just past the living room is a very well-equipped U-shaped kitchen with all the counter space you could ever need. You may make good use of the full-sized oven, four-burner gas stove, dishwasher, full-sized refrigerator with freezer, separate washer and dryer and numerous small appliances including microwave, toaster, and drip coffee maker. All cookware, plates, glasses and cutlery are provided.

Just off the kitchen is a spacious and elegant dining room with a long metal dining table that seats up to 10. Here there are also two square side tables, a beautiful Asian screen and a collection of the artists’ sculpted masks that line the walls. Two large windows provide plenty of light. Tucked discretely in the corner is the powder room with a toilet and sink.

If your party includes a fifth person, you will be able to take advantage of the comfortable airbed provided with the apartment. It can be set up in the dining room, separated from the dining table by the Asian screen.

The hallway leading from the dining room gives access to the two bedrooms and full bathroom. The first door on the right is a bedroom/office with a double bed, and a long desk. Both a PC and a Mac are provided for your use. There is a closet with hanging space and two chests of drawers.

At the end of the hall is the bathroom with full tub/shower, marble sink and counter, toilet and heated towel warmer.

Finally, the tastefully decorated master bedroom is located at the end of the hall, to the right. This spacious room has a king-size bed, two full closets, large chest of drawers and mirror.

Included with the apartment is cable television with over 100 channels, WiFi and free long-distance telephone free to land lines in over 100 countries. This extends to calls to cell phones in the US and Canada.

FEATURED ON HOUSE HUNTER’S INTERNATIONAL, “LA GRENETA” IS A PROVEN HEAVENLY HAVEN!

Rue Greneta, 2nd Arrondissement, Montorgueil, Two-Bedroom, Sleeps up to 6

The subject of the House Hunter’s International episode “Starting Over in Paris,” and nestled just steps from rue Montorgueil, La Greneta has more treats in store than just great access to the edible kind. This roomy two-bedroom apartment will knock your socks off with its fabulous décor, spaciousness, seemingly endless amenities and overall comfort and convenience.

The apartment is located on the third floor of an 18th-century building facing a charming courtyard on one side and a pedestrian street on the other. Windows are in abundance, allowing a constant flow of natural light into the space. The soft white color scheme is tastefully punctuated with the occasional burst of fuchsia in the least expected places.

A generous entrance hallway gives access to the spacious master bedroom with queen-sized bed, desk, television, and more storage and shelf space than you will ever need. The large master marble en suite bath features double sinks and a large tub/shower combination, so that you can really immerse yourself in Paris.

Just across the entrance foyer from the master bedroom is a full bathroom with toilet, shower and two mirrored storage closets. Right next to this is the laundry closet with clothes washer and separate dryer.

As you enter the spacious living room-dining room, the large dining table at your left has comfortable seating for six or eight people. The side table is almost as large as the dining table itself, so don’t worry if you bought too many treats at the market – they can all be served at once!

In addition, you’ll have no problems cooking up anything that your heart desires in the very well-equipped kitchen, which has the counter space of four average-sized Parisian apartments. Here you will find a dishwasher, full-sized refrigerator with sub-zero freezer, a four-burner stove, full-sized oven, two microwave ovens, numerous coffee-making options, toaster, kettle, etc. All necessary dishes, cutlery, glassware, pots and pans are provided.

The living room adjoins the dining room and features an L-shaped sofa that converts to a queen-sized bed. From there you can watch the large 42-inch flat-screen TV, which when not in use, is cleverly hidden behind a large antique mirror mounted on a swinging door. The television receives over 100 channels, several of which are in English. There is also a Blu-Ray DVD player attached.

Just off the living room is the second bedroom. Decorated in deep pink and white and separated from the living room by French doors, silky blinds come down for complete privacy. The comfortable double bed sits beside a spacious mirrored clothing and storage closet.

Included with your stay is free access to the apartment’s WiFi connection as well as use of the telephone, which allows you to call land lines in over 100 countries as well as land lines and cell phones in the U.S., Canada and France, at no cost.

Next time you come to Paris, think about when Les Halles was the central market of Paris. And think about when the rue Montorgueil was the western border of the massive market lined with fishmongers. And think about how much fun it would be to stay in a luxury apartment in one of the city’s most historic districts.

For more information and to book your stay, visit Parler Paris Apartments.

A la prochaine…

adrian 60th birthdayAdrian Leeds

Director of The Adrian Leeds Group, LLC

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6-3-13 Jeff-steiner1P.S. This week, Jeff Steiner of Americans in France interviewed me about life in Paris for his podcast series. Want to hear what we both had to say? Hear it all here!

P.P.S. Home is how you will feel in a private luxury apartment in Paris that has the “seal of approval” from Parler Paris and Parler Nice Apartments and me, Adrian Leeds. Parler Paris Apartments are properties in central Paris mostly owned by our own clients and readers (investment-minded individuals) whom you can trust to provide high quality accommodations that will make your stay in the City of Light as enjoyable and memorable as possible. They are seeking trustworthy guests such as yourselves, to welcome to their Paris homes. Find out more about us. Visit

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