top of page
  • Writer's pictureParisian Niche

Paris Hotels vs Apartments - How to Choose?

The (new) age-old battle of booking your Parisian holiday... hotel or apartment rental?

Let's take a closer look at some pros and cons of each. In transparency, we will not address hostels in this blog, as P'Niche is not well versed enough in that specific type of accommodations and would never wish to steer anyone the wrong direction in Paris - that happens enough when people ask for directions at the Châtelet métro station!

Alors, entrez… Come on in…

There are many things to consider as you plan. Apartments often require a much longer lead time on bookings as they sell out so quickly and / or have less flexible deposit or cancellation policies. In addition, they may impose at least a week's stay. However, if you are traveling with a family or group of friends, who each needs or wants a separate bedroom or bathroom space, apartments can be ideal.

Notably, you may also need / wish to adhere to a slimmer budget and many times (though not always) apartments are less stress on your wallet and will likely provide a kitchen or kitchenette, or even a washing machine, for your needs.

When you find an apartment rental and / or renter you love, you may wish to track and keep that info for you future stays. P'Niche has been hearing so much positive feedback about how those select apartments genuinely feel like a proper second home, and who doesn't want a second home in Paris?

As far a security / privacy, Parisian Niche has been asked many times if surveillance cameras are allowed in rental apartments. The answer seems to be yes - to a point.

Both AirBnB and Vrbo (the largest names in rentals) have clear guidelines on this practice listed here (AirBnB) and here (Vrbo). In short, cameras must be made known clearly.

As far as we can research (and P'Niche is not a professional travel agent), hotels are prohibited from surveillance cameras as indicated here.

With over 1,500 registered hotels within Paris, there are definitely many attributes to mention. Hotels will likely offer a more flexible booking time and often times more amenities that you may wish to indulge in during your holiday getaway. As a single woman who often travels solo, I also like the additional feeling of security a hotel provides for me. That said, it should be well noted that most Parisian hotels offer much smaller rooms and suites than her American counterparts.

All officially registered hotels in Paris are rated from 1 to 5 stars, based on factors such as size of rooms, whether or not a hotel has air conditioning and/or and elevator, etc. It goes without saying that as your star level increases, so do your nightly fees for a guestroom or suite.

Similar to apartment rentals, once you find a hotel and / or chain you love, stick with it. Those loyalty points really do add up to big perks and savings down the line. Further, repeated stays at locations and areas really do lend to that feeling of "arrondissement accessibility." You'll love when your local boulangerie recognizes you on return stays - when you go "home" to Paris!

Also available are a smaller number of ‘Apart-hotels,’ which will likely offer more livable space, a kitchenette, or even a full sized kitchen, as well as the possibility of some basic hotel services. I have found that searching for this type of accommodation is easiest on a site such as and typing 'apart-hotel' into the filter bar within the search section.

Image: Wikipedia

People often ask how one can be sure they are searching within "Paris Proper" when booking accommodations. There is a simple trick to figure it out. Look at the zip code of address of the hotel. ALL Paris zip codes start with 750.

There are 20 arrondissements (districts) in Paris. Thus, the zip codes cover from 75001, 75002 - all the way through 75020.

Don't forget, the arrondissements of Paris, start in the center (Louvre, in the 1st arrondissement, 75001) and then swirl, or "snail," outwards (see map image for numerical markings). More on each specific arrondissement we hope you will subscribe and visit us again! In short, make sure you check the address carefully (be it apartment or hotel) before booking to ensure that you can hang your hat (well, beret) where you wish.

Now, let's play a game of chess with some of the overall Pros & Cons below:

Advantages of Hotels over Short Term Apartment Rentals

· Quality of hotels and consistency of service

· More flexibility and less lead time when booking

· Often found with central location to top attractions

· Special deals on last minute stays and special packages

· Hotel loyalty programs an add up to free stays later on

· Sense of security with 24 hour hotel staff

· Services such as daily cleaning, turn downs, room service, etc.

· Amenities such as a gym, pool, concierge assistance

· Flexible check in time (or luggage storage for early arrivals)

· Higher possibility of accessibility for any disabilities / challenges

Advantages of Short Term Apartment Rentals over Hotels

· Oftentimes, a larger space is offered

Good option for families and friends who wish separate sleeping quarters

· Chance to experience a less tourist based, more local part of town

Check out a local open air market to purchase fresh and local offerings...

· Opportunity to cut down on budget if kitchen is offered to prepare/eat meals at home

This may also help if you must cater to very specific dietary needs

· Amenities often included are a full kitchen or a washing machine

· More privacy than at a hotel

When traveling as a family or group, this allows for one person to sleep in, someone to cook, someone to shower or use the facilities with minimal disturbance to others

· The space is truly "your own". No need to wake up early or to leave the room for daily cleaning service, etc.

· Many (not all) apartments to rent come with outdoor space or amazing views

· Ideal for longer term stays (weeks or even a month or more)

While AirBnB and VRBO are the most popular short term apartment rental booking sites, Paris offers some other wonderful, more boutique options. There are offerings from,,,, and as well. Certainly, there are more, this is just a starting point of options.

Also noteworthy: smoking is illegal in Paris hotels. You might get hit with a sizeable fine, so best to adhere to the rules here. If smoking is a must for you and you decide to use a short term apartment, please read the fine print of your host and rental agent to see if smoking is permitted.

For my friends traveling with pets and/or service animals, again it is best to triple check any sort of accommodation before bringing your fur baby along for the adventure. We'll be exploring travel with pets more in a future post, so we'll be waiting to see you again at Parisian Niche, tails wagging.

Some points to consider with all Parisian accommodations are that not all spaces offer air conditioning or elevators (and the elevators that are there are much smaller than in The States). You should definitely ensure you "know before you go" what your accommodation guarantees.

As you begin to weigh your own pros and cons, recognize that while many will offer opinions, there no right or wrong answers - only what works best for you. Naturally, you may choose different options for accommodations for different trips as each adventure will have its own specifications to fulfill.

Whichever option you choose, do (and enjoy the journey of) your research. Check reviews and feedback before firming up your selection. Ensure that your accommodations are booked and confirmed in writing/email.

Most importantly, make sure you make your own best informed decision to ensure you can live your best Parisian life while on holiday.

What type of accommodations will you be researching and booking for your Parisian vacation? Feel free to share in the comments area below... à bientôt!


Recent Posts

See All


Unknown member
May 27, 2022

I do love the apartment route! I get to pretend I’m living in Paris! Plus I love the ability to stretch out more than you are able to in a hotel. But that’s just me! If I was able to stay at the Ritz you bet your beret i would!!

May 27, 2022
Replying to

ooooh, I'd love to stay in the Ritz, Le Crillon, Le Meurice, I'm not picky! ;)

bottom of page