Friday, July 9, 2010

Paris for Writers

Didn't make it to the Paris Writers' Workshop? Pas de problème. Writer Abroad collected all sorts of insider information from fellow writers and is now sharing her wealth of knowledge on affordable apartments and hotels, great cafés, English bookstores, and more.

Where to stay

Here are a few websites where you can find rentals that typically cut out the agent (and the agent fees).

Immobilier De Particulier A Particulier

Viva Street


Because Writer Abroad didn’t know these great websites ahead of time, she had to pay for a hotel during her conference. C'est la vie. But this turned out to be the best hotel she’s ever stayed at in Paris for the price, so she recommends it for stays under 7 days (the minimum stay for most apartments in Paris):

Hotel Chatillon

Huge, newly renovated bathroom (finally a Parisian shower that you can bend down in!), quiet street (no traffic noise), price (between 80-90 Euros/night for a double), clean, modern chic.


Shakespeare & Company

37 rue de la Bucherie, 75005 Paris

They have readings once a week.

Red Wheelbarrow Bookstore

22 rue Saint-Paul, 75004 Paris

Tiny but charming, with a great selection of books on Paris written by expats.

I love my blender

36 rue du temple paris, 75004 Paris

Cute shop in the Marais with English and French books as well as cards and gifts.

Restaurants and Cafés

Bouillon Racine

3 rue Racine, 75006 Paris

Gorgeous art deco interior, this is where the closing dinner for the Paris Writers’ Workshop was held. I’ve had better food in Paris, but recommend this place for the décor.

Chez Papa

153 rue Montmartre, 75002 Paris

If you want southwestern inspired French food, this is a cozy spot.

New Jawad

12 av. Rapp, 75007 Paris

Avoid the overpriced cafes near the Eiffel Tower and eat reasonably priced Indian food instead. 8 Euro vegetarian dishes.

Creperie de Port-Manech

52 rue du Montparnasse, 75014 Paris

Just one of the many charming creperies on the rue du Montparnasse. When in doubt, eat the dessert crepe first. Crepes from 5 Euros.

Mamie Gateaux

66-68-70 rue du Cherche-Midi, 75006 Paris

The best chocolate cake I’ve ever eaten. The street itself is also worth walking down for its cute shops and cafes. Desserts 5 Euros.


32 rue de la fontaine au roi, 75011 Paris

Fantastic, reasonably-priced Moroccan food. Main dishes from 11 Euros.

Le Flore en l’Ile

42 quai d’Orleans, 75004 Paris

The best ice cream sodas in Paris. Ice cream from 3 Euros.


33 Boulevard Arago, 75013 Paris

Ginger juice, chicken and onion stew, and more from this fantastic Senegalese restaurant. Main dishes from 14 Euros.

Second-hand Stores

(shopping for writers on a budget!)

Freep ‘S’ Star Bretonnerie

8 rue Sainte Croix de la Bretonnerie, 75004 Paris

Freep ‘S’ Star Verrerie

61 rue de la Verrerie, 75004 Paris

Other planning tools

A Writer’s Paris, by Eric Maisel

36 Hours in Paris, sans la Tour Eiffel: blog post from Zurich-based writer Kelly Jarosz

Other tips on Paris? Leave a comment.


  1. AnonymousJuly 09, 2010

    Thanks for including the link to my blog Chantal! I'm ecstatic to have found these gems in Paris and to share them with others.

  2. Kelly, I love how your post will let other writers live through the days as we writers at the workshop did.

  3. AnonymousJuly 10, 2010

    I hope you had a great time in Paris, Chantal! I got my own dose of inspiration at a writing residency in Vermont - and am ready to take a new store of information and inspiration back to the City of Light!

    Thanks for some new Paris addresses. I know some of these, but am always happy to learn about new ones! I have a TIPs section on my Paris blog if anyone's interested. Of course, they often come along with rambling personal anecdotes, too, so maybe not as straightforward as Kelly's very helpful list!

    I second the idea of continuing to work on new projects while you shop around the first. (Of course, what am I saying? I'm not even done with the first!) I hadn't realized that you had finished the memoir - congrats!

  4. AnonymousJuly 10, 2010

    Thanks for these great Paris tips! I'm not a writer, but have a writer's taste (and budget), so I can't wait to visit these shops and restaurants.

  5. Hope everyone enjoys these places as much as I did!

  6. I love Mamie Gateaux! Thanks for sharing your other finds, too. It was lovely meeting you in Paris!

  7. Ann,

    Mamie Gateaux was amazing!

    It was great meeting you as well. Looking forward to reading your book.

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