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When you suddenly get the feeling that you are in exactly the right place, it can be hard to pinpoint the reasons. At this property, some such reasons are plain to see, whilst others are more secretive. True to its reputation, the Odeon district alone embodies the very spirit of Paris. Between the Institut de France and the Odéon Theatre, there is such an abundance of intellectual, artistic and literary life that it permeates even the air we breathe. The apartment, however, has something more to offer: a place to retire quietly for the day, where stone walls, wooden beams and half-timberings still embody the centuries that have passed after a careful renovation. Everyone will find their own reasons for feeling they are in the right place.
We were studying in Paris between 1965 and 1970. My husband was at the Ecole des Mines and I was at "Langues O". We were living just five hundred metres from the Sorbonne when we took part in the events of May 1968. Having only experienced working life in Paris, we decided to leave the capital for the French Riviera. We therefore wanted to keep a pied-à-terre in this lively district that we had grown very attached to.
We bought the apartment “blind” and then restored it. As the work progressed, we brought out all the original architectural features: the beams in the ceilings, the half-timberings in the oldest parts (the bedroom and the dining room) and the natural rubble stone walls in the living room (the most recent part). A wall which is roughly one metre thick separates the two areas of the apartment and we kept the very old rustic door that joins them. The vaulted porch overlooks a small, tree-lined paved courtyard. Four buildings from the same period overlook the inner courtyard, each of which has a small paved courtyard similar to ours. The ensemble creates a beautifully light surface that brightens the apartment despite it being on the first level. The staircase was a magnificent climb, but modernity called for a lift which is thankfully all in glass. The staircase itself has been fully preserved and lies beneath a glass roof that initially illuminated the entire stairwell.
With a very classical facade, the street side of the building dates back to the eighteenth century, whilst the courtyard is from the 17th and parts of our apartment likely date back to the 16th. Originally, the building was most probably an apartment building with shops on the street and courtyard warehouses on the ground and first floors. This would explain the architectural differences amongst the courtyard apartments, including our own.
Located just 150m from Boulevard Saint-Germain and 20m from Rue de l'Odéon, the apartment first and foremost offers absolute tranquillity. It has retained many original features which give the ensemble an undeniable charm. Said charm has been enhanced with rustic, comfortable and warm furnishings. The apartment boasts an ideal location in the centre of Paris. Dynamic and lively, the Odeon district is renowned for being one of the most literary districts of the capital and the abundance of old bookshops provides the proof. The district forms part of the capital's historical, scientific and cultural centre. The many imposing buildings are testimony to this hot spot of memory and history. The Louvre, Notre-Dame, the Musée d'Orsay, the Musée de Cluny, the banks of the Seine, and the art gallery district around the School of Fine Arts can all be reached on foot. As for walks, the Luxembourg Palace and its beautiful French garden are just a few minutes away.
Two of the oldest and best known restaurants in Paris, Le Procope and Le Bouillon Racine, are within walking distance. We particularly like Le Marco Polo, an Italian restaurant, and Le Petit Suisse which serves cheese and charcuterie accompanied by a delicious little Beaujolais wine. La Méditerranée serves excellent fish. For delicacies, try the Pierre Hermé patisserie on boulevard Saint-Germain and, above all, the Maison Mulot (a patisserie/delicatessen) opposite the Saint-Germain market. We never tire of the Maison Mulot and their pain au chocolat alone is worth the trip. Les Deux Magots, which serves delicious hot chocolates, and La Rhumerie on Boulevard Saint-Germain are two lovely spots for an afternoon refreshment.
1300 € - 1500 € per week
With a surface area of 54m2, the apartment consists of three adjoining main rooms. In the most recent part is the kitchen to the right of the entrance, followed by the living room (equipped with a queen size sofa bed) and a separate toilet with a small hand basin. Behind the wall and its old door is the oldest part of the apartment with the dining room, the bedroom, and the en suite bathroom.