When we say unique in Paris, we mean it. Set back in a hidden tree-shaded courtyard off an uninspiring street minutes from Père Lachaise cemetery, no lodging in the capital is quite as unobtrusively fabulous as this trailblazing, 100-percent sustainable, five-room (including two suites) eco-lodge. Impeccably yet unpretentiously designed, with soaring glass windows framing views of the trees and gardens from every room, both your aesthetics and your conscience—not to mention body and spirit—will feel perfectly at ease in this serene and beautiful space.
The feeling of cognitive dissonance (Where am I? Paris? Really?) lasts only few seconds before you succumb to the sophisticated yet totally cozy atmosphere of your room or suite, lovingly decorated with Cole & Sons wallpapers that echo the trees and greenery outside your window or spacious balcony and sleek Scandinavian furniture. Handpicked accents from around the world include chic original artworks, African textiles, and ingenious lighting. All rooms have minibars.
Open yet private baths offer state-of-the-art fixtures, with ample tubs and/or huge walk-in rain showers and wondrous heated Japanese toilets that both wash and dry!
From the sleek ground-floor lobby—or living area, as it’s more like walking into a home than a hotel—you will notice some of the sustainable elements unique to the lodge: solar squares on the glass ceiling, a pellet-burning stove, and cutting-edge titanium-dioxide floor tiles that act as air purifiers, reducing airborne pollutants by 70 percent. So the fresh wood scent you’re enjoying is not just the fragrance of untreated siding but actually fresh air!
Served at a communal table in the kitchen overlooking the interior garden, breakfast is an amiable affair, offered with the same warmth and attention to detail you find everywhere in the lodge. The croissants, bread, homemade jams, yogurt, cheeses, charcuterie, and fresh-presssed fruit juices are all sourced in the neighborhood.
There is no in-house bar, but you’re welcome to imbibe in your room or the common areas: downstairs or upstairs lounges, the convivial kitchen, or the internal and external courtyard gardens.
Empire Cyril Lignac
When on the rue Charonne, you will want to know about Cyril Lignac, whose bistro (Le Chardenoux), pastry shop and boulangerie, and newly opened chocolate boutique are clustered at an intersection of the rues Chanzy and Paul Bert, about 10 minutes from the hotel. All noteworthy, the pastries are some of Paris’s best and for chocolate lovers this adorable café is just pure good fun (do not miss the chocolat chaud!). Note to chocoholics: Alain Ducasse’s chocolate factory (Chocolat Alain Ducasse, 40 rue de la Roquette), about 15 minutes away on foot, is not to miss.
Set on the more scruffy side of the Rue de Charonne, you’re still only a 10-minute walk from its livelier half, a popular neighborhood that draws both families and a young, hip crowd. Charonne, Rue Keller, and the Rue de la Roquette are packed with independent designer boutiques, some of Paris’s best gastro-bistros, and a vibrant café life. Neighboring Rue Paul Bert is also a foodie destination. Within an fairly easy walk of the Bastille and Marais, as well as the Canal St-Martin and République, you’re within minutes of wonderful Père Lachaise cemetery, the permanent home of almost everyone who’s anyone in Paris, from Molière to Jim Morrison, and one of Paris’s best places for a stroll.
You won’t have to venture far off rue Charonne, if at all, to find some of Paris’s top dining spots—though this arrondissement is lousy with great dining—starting with the wonderful gastro-bistro Septime, its sister seafood restaurant Clamato, or Septime La Cave wine bar. If you can’t get in to Septime, and its one of the hottest reservations in town, head over to Bistro Paul Bert, a top bistro table in the city with a legendary cheese cart, or one of its offshoots, Le 6 Paul Bert or Unico for unabashed carnivores (all within a 10-minute walk of the hotel).
With themed parties and DJ nights, the bar at Mama Shelter is really the neighborhood hotspot and rightfully so, especially the rooftop bar in warm weather (five-minutes from the hotel). But on the Rue de Charonne, you’ll be in good neighborhood company at the Pause Café as well as La Belle Equipe, both open late. For cocktails, we like stylish Pasdeloup‘s well-priced craft cocktails and lively back room scene, and the Clown Bar, both on Rue Amelot (10-15 minutes from the hotel).