The centre of the arts since the beginning of the 20th century and an intellectual hub since 17th century, the Latin quarter where you have chosen to stay in our 3-star hotel in Saint-Germain-des-Prés is also the area where aesthetics reigns supreme. This the artistic centre of Paris. Take the Saint-Germain church, consecrated in around 558 and the vestiges of the Abbey built in around 1000 at the height of its intellectual and spiritual influence. Rue du Four is named after the Abbey ovens.
In Rue de l’Ancienne Comédie you will find the Café Procope, the oldest café restaurant in Paris (1686), where encyclopaedists would meet and discuss Diderot and D’Alembert, before the district became home to some of French Revolution’s most prominent figures: Marat, Danton, Robespierre… This same revolutionary spirit also inspired artist Eugène Delacroix (Liberty Leading the People), with a museum in Rue de Fürstenberg founded in the 1920s. Here you will find a hidden gem within the capital: Fürstenberg square.
At the Liberation of Paris, the existentialists gathered in Café de Flore, Les Deux Magots, La Rhumerie, Brasserie Lipp. Gréco and de Beauvoir, both artists and muses, would inspire Sartre, Camus and the talented Boris Vian (engineer, writer, jazz musician, critique). Later on, in a different vein but still on the Left Bank, writer Antoine Blondin took up residence in Rue du Bac.
The Musée du Luxembourg, Hôtel de la Monnaie, l’École des Beaux- Arts (fine arts school) and Saint-Sulpice church remain, while those who prefer more select shopping will head up Boulevard Raspail and Rue de Sèvres. The Bon Marché department store and the neighbouring Grande Épicerie de Paris food store have plenty of temptations.