|Hotel Auriane Porte de Versailles
60 rue Oliviers de Serres
75015 Paris, France
Tel. : 01 45 32 44 33
Fax : 01 45 32 58 95
"I love Paris every moment.
Every moment of the year, I love Paris.
Why! Oh why do I love Paris?
Because my love is here..."
- Frank Sinatra
Meteo Paris / France
Welcome to Paris!
This page was designed especially for you who may visit Paris for
the first time. The idea is to give you advices to acquaint you
with the City of Light, and help you prepare for this exciting trip.
Prepare well for a stroll
Once you have
settled down in your comfortable hotel room and are getting ready
to take your first stroll, take some time to dress appropriately.
First, put on
a really good pair of walking shoes to feel comfortable in
the Parisian streets. Walking in Paris means stopping often to look
at amazing details and buildings. This constant stop-and-go will
wear you down if you aren't comfy in your shoes.
Visiting the Eiffel
Tower means waiting often over 30 minutes to gain access to the
ticket booth, then waiting some more for the elevator on the way
up, and waiting some more for the elevator on the way down. So to
your feet, a pair of good shoes will make a big difference!
Parisian weather is fickle in springtime and during fall: what starts out as a great
clear day can turn rainy and chilly in the afternoon. Pack a sweater
and a rain breaker if you are visiting during these seasons. Summer
is usually fine (70-85°F), August is generally hotter (80-95°F).
Winter is rainy and cold, almost as cold as in NYC.
In any case, take
your umbrella along, it may become your best friend -- especially
if you intend to take pictures of everything. Rain and camera lenses
don't like each other.
Now that you're
dressed and all ready to venture outside, here are a couple of useful
Avoid taking a taxi during the day, and notably
in the morning until 11:00, and in the late afternoon from 4:00
to 8:00. Streets are jam-packed during those periods, and seeing
the meter run while you're a sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic
is a disheartening experience.
Taxi fares: taxi meters show your fare and
one of three letters: A, B, or C. If you are within Paris and on
the ring outside Paris (the peripheral boulevard), the A rate applies
from 6:00 PM and 8:00 PM, and the B rate turns on from 8:00 PM till
6:00 AM. When you leave Paris intra-muros, the driver will turn
on the B rate during the day and the C rate from 8:00 PM. If you
are far from Paris, the C rate always applies. You will pay extra
for every luggage you load in the trunk and if you take the cab
from an airport. Don't try to hail a cab in the street too close
to a train station: taxi drivers can't load passengers within a
100-meter radius from the train stations. Go to the station taxi
head instead, or further away from the station.
French people do lunch between 12:00 and 1:30
PM, and dinner between 7:30 and 10:00 PM. If you wish to
avoid the crowd, lunch at 12:00 tops and dine out from 6:00 to 7:00
PM. Restaurants rarely serve between 2:00 and 6:00 PM.
Having a drink at the terasse of a sidewalk cafe is a necessary experience in Paris (skip it between November and
March though,except if weather permits). However, terasse drinks
are often charged premium prices.
Although they are saddled with a reputation, cafe
waiters are not necessarily rude: they're just in a hurry. So
don't take offense if they are impatient with you. Smile and show
them what you want on the menu. They won't return the smile, but
you will get your order quickly.
In Parisian restaurants, it is not customary
for your waiter to come back to you once you are served to see if
everything is allright: they assume this is the case. So don't feel
you are ignored: just call the waiter when you wish to have your
bread basket replenished. If you dine out at an expensive restaurant,
waiters will tend your table diligently. Otherwise, it won't be
Gratuity: your restaurant/cafe check already
includes a 15% gratuity. If you feel like giving an extra tip to
your cafe waiter, leave EUR 1 ($.97) on the table. In a restaurant,
you may leave EUR 3-5 ($2.7-4.5, more if you are in an expensive
place) but again, that's not expected in either case. Your credit
card receipt won't show any gratuity line.
Armed with these
few basic advices, you are ready to conquer the asphalt. On to
places to visit!
Paris monuments and hallmarks
|The Eiffel Tower
This world-famous landmark
was built for the Universal Fair of 1889, held to commemorate
the centenary of the French Revolution. It stands 1050 ft
high. Admission (elevator to the top) is EUR 9.90 for adults,
EUR 5.30 for children under 12. Opening hours: Jan 1-Jun 13:
9:30am-11pm daily (stairs: 9:30am-6pm); Jan 14-Aug 31: 9am-midnight
|Notre Dame Cathedral
Work on the Hunchback's
gothic home began in 1163 AD and was completed circa 1345
AD. The house of God can accommodate over 6,000 worshippers.
Admission in the Cathedral is free, going to the towers costs
about EUR 6. No elevator, people with a heart condition should
abstain. Opening hours: 8:00AM-6:45PM daily. Towers: 9:30AM-6:45PM
daily. Masses: 8AM, 9AM, 12AM, 6:45PM.
|Champs Elysees and the Arch of Triumph
The Champs Elysees avenue
probably only deserves its nickname of "most beautiful avenue
in the world" for its lower section, starting Place de la
Concorde and ending at Grand Palais. The rest of the avenue
mainly features overpriced shops and restaurants - with a
few exceptions in the side streets. Walk to the Arch of Triumph,
at the top of the avenue, and visit the 50-meter high structure
built to commemorate Napoleon's victories. Admission is about
EUR 6, and free for children under 12. Opening hours: 9:30AM-11:00PM
daily from April to October, and 10:00AM-11:00PM daily from
|Montmartre and the Church of the Sacred
basilica crowns the Montmartre hill. Its construction began
in 1875 and was completed in 1914. Admission is free, except
for the crypt and dome (about EUR 5). For a fun ride, go to
the Anvers metro station, walk to "Rue Tardieu" and take the
"funiculaire" (a one-car train which brings you almost to
the top of the hill). Montmartre itself used to be a village
outside Paris. The hill is famous for its architectural landmarks,
its artistic life, and more recently, for 'Amelie'. It counts
no less than 7 museums!
|Church of the Invalides
Its building started
in 1671 under the reign of King Louis the XIVth, and about
30 years later. From its inception, the place was designed
to serve as a home to impoverished soldiers and wounded veterans
of the French army. It comprises the veteran hospital itself,
a church, several museums, and the tomb of Napoleon I. Admission
is EUR 6 for adults, and free for children under 12. Opening
hours: October to March 31: 10AM-4:45PM, April-September 30:
|Saint Germain des Prés / Latin Quarter
Located on Ile de la
Cité, the construction of this gothic church started under
Louis IX in 1240 AD to house relics believed to be Jesus's
Crown of Thorns and parts of the Holy Cross. Amongst other
remarkable details, the tall stained-glass windows which are
mainly original work. Admission is about EUR 6. Opening hours:
|Place des Vosges
Its construction started
in the early XVIIth century under Henri IV. It was completed
in 1612. Initially named 'Royal Square', it was renamed 'Place
des Vosges' by Napoleon I as an homage to the inhabitants
of the Vosges region who had been particularly quick to pay
their taxes. The square is remarkable both by its style (it
is lined with 36 buildings, all dating from Henri IV) and
by its shops and its little park where Parisians like to loaf
on sunny Sundays.
Find more comments
on Paris landmarks and monuments at http://www.paris-eiffel-tower-news.com/
Paris offers a
number of interesting itineraries for strollers. You can follow
the waterways (river Seine, St
Martin Canal, river Bièvre) or the 17-km long railway transformed
into a most surprising walkway hung some 50 feet above the hustle-bustle of the city. You can also
spend some quality time in any of the large public parks which the
city counts (Luxembourg, Buttes-Chaumont, Montsouris, Georges Brassens),
discover the gardens
of the 14th district, or else decide to learn live history and
architecture in areas like St-Sulpice and St Germain-des-Prés.
A lively and interesting city
This is but a
glimpse of the many places you will want to visit during your stay
in Paris. Guests of the hotel are offered a Complimentary Pass to the Members Only section of the Paris Eiffel Tower News
website, which features a lot more information on Paris.
Pass can be retrieved from the Thank You page which displays after
your reservation request has been received by the hotel.
The hotel personnel
wishes to be of service to you during your stay in Paris.