Living it up in the 10th
Hotel Providence is in the 10th arrondissement, a short walk from Strasbourg Saint-Denis metro and close to to Château d’Eau.
I trod around this part of town briefly when I went to Hubert (formerly Bistro Bellet) for a meal with my ma 2 years ago; hip restaurants continue to open up here and cool boutiques like Atelier Courrones are cropping up and smartening up the area.
However, the area is still pretty gritty, so the chokehold of gentrification hasn’t quite been fully realised (yet). If you’re precious and dainty and want that fairytale romantic postcard picture of Paris, this ain’t your spot. If you want to check out a bustling, up and coming part of Paris, then certainly hit up the 10th. I’d say it’s still fairly off the radar even for those tourists like myself, who are keen to experience the city ‘authentically’.
Hotel Providence is pretty close to the 3rd arrondissement which is good as you can explore the Marais area quite easily from here and after a night out at the fabulous revamped Les Bains, we strolled back to our hotel and it only took 10mins.
My good friend who lives in SF was making her way to the South of France in June for a wedding, so we decided to make the most of her trip and head to Paris for a few days, for what has inadvertedly but happily turned into a yearly jaunt, eating our way around European cities.
I did sooo much research for accommodation in Paris, all the Airbnb’s I came across were either on par cost wise with hotels or just not very nice, so we decided to go with a hotel. I still definitely think hotels are relevant especially if you are vacationing for 2/3 days – sometimes it’s just nice to do nothing at all and have everything prepared for you. Earlier in the year, I’d looked up Hotel Montana but the correspondence was just so shitty, I decided to pass on this. Other spots, I looked at included: Hotel Panache, Hotel Bachaumont, Hotel Henriette, C.O.Q Hotel, Les Bains and Ministere Hotel.
We decided to stay at Hotel Providence – from the pictures it looked quite dark and sexy and felt quite opulent but in a modern cool way. It was also located in the 10th arrondisement which was an area I wanted to explore because of the good restaurants in the neighbourhood.
When we arrived, the hotel was as charming as it looked in the pictures. I particularly loved the fireplace with a gorgeous mustard velvet sofa (which would be super cosy come winter) and the outdoor terrace, which seemed to be a rendez vous joint for hip young Parisiennes.
BEDROOM & BATHROOM
This boutique hotel holds 18 rooms, 3 of which are suites. The first night I spent in the larger ‘Superior’ room (21m²) with my friend which was very dark (perhaps a little too dark) and had a ginormous bathroom with disabled facilities. I can’t quite put my finger on it but there was something about this room that didn’t feel as plush as it should have, it felt a little like someone trying to pass off Sandro as Saint Laurent.
On the 2nd day when my friend’s husband arrived, I moved into a smaller ‘Superior’ room (17m²) which I actually thought felt more premium – it was still dark and broody with its navy walls and elaborate wall paper but light streamed in via the balcony double doors. Perfect for one person but perhaps a touch cramped for 2 people if you’re planning on staying more than 3 days.
The bathrooms stocked Hotel Providence branded products and I must say its moisturiser was one of the best I’ve ever used in a hotel – I wish I had taken home more samples!
Every room had a mac computer replacing that hotel quintessential item – the TV. How thoroughly modern. Wifi as you would expect is free for all guests.
There’s a bar in each room where you can make your own cocktails using the items from the mini-bar / requesting some from the concierge or using your own shop bought items. I love a good cocktail but we didn’t actually end up using this bar at all because we went out to drink cocktails. I reckon had we stayed longer, we may have utilised it – so it’s a charming addition to the room but I do wonder how many guests ACTUALLY use it?
This was probably the worst part of the whole experience – not that the food was bad – nice croissants, cheeses etc but the staff were rude and just plain weird – really odd considering how nice the front desk was. It felt like it was a completely different company running the kitchen operations vs the reception.
Breakfast was supposed to be included as part of the package, so I ordered a boiled egg (which incidentally came out undercooked) and they didn’t mention that this is an additional cost and at nearly €10 I deffo wanna know if you’re gonna charge me that much more for an egg. So, if you’re not sure if it’s included, ask before you order.
SERVICE & COSTS
Sharing a Superior room (€320 a night) came to about €160 each per night and €420 each for the 3 nights, so it’s not cheap cheap but it’s not horrendous either for Paris. As I mentioned, I thought the reception / concierge desk were absolutely delightful and very helpful if we had any queries but the restaurant folk were the polar opposite. Despite some kinks, overall, I enjoyed my stay at Hotel Providence and would return.
Hotel Providence is a dark sexy, hip hotel in the 10th arrondissement. It’s not without its flaws but it’s a good base for exploring this up and coming area of Paris
LAST VISITED JUN 2016