Hotel Henri IV
25, place Dauphine, Paris, France
Doubles from: $65 to $103
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Reviewed by EuroCheapo.com Editors
Location is everything for the Hotel Henri IV. Located on the Place Dauphine toward the tip of the Ile de la Cité, this “island” cheapo is ideal for romantic types looking for a simple, historic and super-central hotel. But warning: The hotel is slated to close soon.
Pros: Amazing island location. Recently renovated rooms. Historic building.
Cons: Simple rooms with few amenities. No Wi-Fi. Slated to close for good soon.
First, a warning: The Henri IV is slated to close. The Balitrand family, the Henri IV’s long-time proprietors, sold it in late 2013, and the new owners have planned to close it down at the end of September 2014 and convert it into full floor rental apartment units. In our humble opinion, this is quite sad, and such a boring finale to one of Paris’ last remaining unusual cheap sleeps.
However, as with many real estate sagas in Paris, things have been developing slowly, and the hotel remains open for business as of late summer 2014. So will it close this year? Stay tuned, and contact the hotel for further information.
And now, back to our review...
When considering a stay at the Henri IV, it helps to embrace history. While the Balitrand family ran it as a hotel from 1935-2013, the building dates way back to 1635. In the early days of EuroCheapo’s Paris guide (around 2001), we recommended the hotel, as it offered ultra-cheap, basic rooms with a sense of history to boot. Things got a little too “basic,” however, and so we took down the review a couple of years later. However, the owners revamped the Henri IV in late 2009, renovating almost all of its 15 rooms.
Don’t get the wrong impression—the zero-star hotel still just provides minimal services and amenities. Expect a bed, desk and chair and large, old-fashioned windows looking out to the Place Dauphine. There are no TVs or telephones to be found, and notably (for today’s travelers), the hotel doesn’t offer Wi-Fi.
All but two of the rooms have private bathrooms, which were also renovated with new tiling and showers. Two highly sought-after rooms have private terraces.
One of those with a private terrace is a top-floor single, which is also the only room to have its bathroom located outside the room (across the hallway and in the courtyard). I stayed in this room in May 2014 and had a memorable time—lounging on the terrace, catching up on a book (no Wi-Fi!), and getting lost in the view.
The Henri IV is clearly not for everyone. While the Place Dauphine is located in the bulls-eye center of Paris, minutes from the Latin Quarter, Notre Dame and Louvre, the area could feel deserted late at night. Also, if your hotel demands include modern amenities like air conditioning, TV, Wi-Fi or an elevator, you should obviously keep looking.
However, guests craving a sense of history with their hotel will embrace the hotel from the first sight of its antiquated sign and the inaugural climb up the crooked staircase.
Note: Reservations are only taken by telephone.
Note: This hotel was visited by a EuroCheapo editor and is recommended based on cleanliness, location, price and overall quality. EuroCheapo did not charge this hotel to be listed.
- Breakfast Included
- Bathroom: Private
About the Hotel Henri IV neighborhood
Located to the west of Châtelet, the area surrounding the Louvre museum is an art lover's playground. The quarter boasts grand Haussmann-style boulevards leading to the gold dome of the Opéra and the banks of the Seine. The quarter's biggest draw is the Louvre museum and the Seine-side Jardin des Tuileries.