Saturday, October 1, 2011

Press Release - Lost in Francelation

There are some pretty interesting bits of Paris travel information and advise in our latest Press Release so I thought Id share it!  Enjoy :)

::Petite Pr:Clients:Petite Paris B&B :7. Blog:Logos:2. Header:transparisskyline.pngLost in Francelation

Interesting bits about travelling to Paris!

o        Renting an apartment is actually illegal in Paris!  
The law states that renting out short-term apartment rentals in Paris is not allowed. Unless your home is reclassified as commercial property, the B&B service, if you want to experience living in a real home in Paris. As a cultural exchange, the B&B service is encouraged by Tourisme France.

Instead of just ‘living’ in a Parisian apartment, experiencing real ‘life’ by sharing with real natives, Petite Paris is your portal to true Parisian life!

o        The Customer is Not Always Right!
Putting it simply the return policy in Paris is an unfathomable one. Before making large purchases, go to the customer service desk (usually located somewhere in a galaxy far, far away) and ask about the return policy. If you purchase over a certain amount, some stores have a refund for tourists, so bring a copy of your Passport when shopping. Otherwise choose very (very) carefully. If your item is faulty don’t expect the store to take responsibility, they’ll send you on a goose chase or bomb you with paperwork. Just accept it as ‘one-of-those-things’.

Want help shopping and haggling in Paris? Some Petite Paris hosts can accompany you on shopping excursions to flea, gourmet and antique markets giving you tips on how and where to shop. Try Helene at B&B364.

o        First floor vs Ground Floor vs Top Floor
The ground floor (street entry) is called ‘Rez-de-Chausee (Rez meaning ‘shaved or level’ and Chausee being similar to Chaussures which is the word for shoes, so in all it means Shoe Level) so when you see ‘RC’ next to the elevator button you know it is the ground floor i.e street level. Therefore the first floor is actually the second floor and the second floor tactually the third and so on…

Petite Paris ‘Rez-de-Chausee’ apartments are ideal choices for anyone with a disability since Paris is the most poorly rated for accessibility  (see next point) Try B&B253 – Christiane’s home in the 11th  
B&B272  – Annie and Brice’s home in the 18th

  • o    Paris is not a handicap friendly city!

Traditionally the Maids quarters (‘chambre de bonne’) were the tiny top floor apartments only accessible by stairs (service entries). Haussmann’s didn’t have lifts and upper classes were too proper to climb so they occupied the ground floors. Many Haussmann’s to this day still don’t have lifts and real estate ads still wont mention when an apartment is a ‘chambre de bonne’. Major efforts are underway in other areas to improve accessibility in the city and the Paris tourist office website offers a list of popular Parisian sights and attractions that are accessible. Though even mums with strollers won’t fit in the aisles of most small stores or the escalators in the metro…

o        Price warnings against travelling to Paris!  Paris is expensive…this is not new news! Our best tips: VAustralia is currently offering early bird discounts; museums are free entry on the first Sunday of each month: use Museum discount passes; Transport Cards (do not rent cars); museums are FREE for under 25s; street food options are delicious; look out for Happy Hours, visit depot designer stores not luxury boutiques; and no over-priced hotels of course.

o        French bread has no preservatives! A requirement by LAW! This means bread goes stale in 24hrs. So if you buy a fresh baguette at breakfast time make sure you eat it by lunch or you’ll be breaking teeth at dinnertime.

The best bakery in Paris voted in 2011 is: Au Levain d’Antan by baker Pascal Barillon at 6 rue de abbesses, Paris 18th arrondissement. It can be your local bakery if you stay next door at Petite Paris B&B361 with Julie and Alexandre.


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