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Chic Paris Neighborhood the Marais Finally Has Hotel Star Power

An influx of luxury accommodations is giving travelers new reason to prioritize the longtime trendy area.

Le Progrès cafe in the Marais quarter.

Le Progrès cafe in the Marais quarter.

Photographer: Marc Piasecki/Getty Images Europe

All of Paris’s neighborhoods are like characters unto themselves, much like the residents that call them home—and perhaps none more so than the Marais. Its narrow, gaslit streets still look the way they did in Henry IV’s days, when the Good King made the neighborhood his aristocratic playground. And yet the area has for decades doubled as the hub of all things young and cool in the City of Light: a long-running gay district, and home to whatever next-big-thing Paris might have, be it rising creatives and their designer boutiques, busy neo-bistros, or thumping nightclubs. 

Despite that enticing mix of old and new, the Marais has consistently lacked great hotels. The neighborhood’s architecture—a patchwork of low-rise townhouses and storefronts—poses a challenge for large hospitality brands, which generally favor grand maisons that make for more attractive conversion projects. Independent hotels that crop up tend to have limited amenities, thanks to those narrow floor plans. So for most travelers, staying in the Marais has been possible only if you were willing to give up the creature comforts of Paris’s excellent hotels or were looking for an Airbnb. Not anymore.