Mama Shelter Paris
109, Rue De Bagnolet, Paris, France star
Doubles from: $115 to $257
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Reviewed by EuroCheapo.com Editors
Calling all hipsters! The Mama Shelter, located one block east of Père Lachaise cemetery in the 20th arrondissement, offers 172 rooms with ultra-trendy design in an atmosphere that’s equal parts hotel, nightclub and fashionista den. For this Mama, eclectic design reigns supreme.
Pros: Trendy, ultra-modern hotel decked out with amenities. Close to Pere Lachaise. Bustling with activity in its multiple bars and restaurants.
Cons: Dark rooms. Location is far from central Paris. Rates are beginning to climb out of “Cheapo” range.
The Mama Shelter is a rather new addition to the Paris hotel scene. It opened in late 2008, a creation of hotel impresario Philippe Starck. The hotel’s exterior is all very modern—seven floors that combine concrete and floor-to-ceiling windows at severe angles. It could easily be mistaken for a modern art museum somewhere in Scandinavia.
It should be no surprise then that rooms at the Mama Shelter are interesting. First off, they’re practical—each is equipped with an iMac that doubles as a free computer terminal and television, free Wi-Fi, air conditioning, kitchenette, and minibar. Large soundproof windows offer impressive neighborhood views. The décor juxtaposes concrete walls with polished wooden surfaces, and the dark carpeting seems to have been scribbled on by 1,000 silver markers. As if to highlight the hotel’s playfulness, someone decided to cover the bedside lamps with masks of cartoon characters, casting a rather Goofy glow over the otherwise entirely too dark rooms. (Seriously, somebody turn up the lights!)
Happily, bathrooms are quite bright, with white tiles and a large glass-walled walk-in shower. (None of the rooms have bathtubs. “They’re not eco-friendly,” the manager explained to us.) The hotel is rightly proud of their choice of toiletries—only Kiehl’s shampoo and soap.
The ground floor buzzes with tech-savvy, urbane exuberance—and moves to a constant beat. Past the spot-lit reception area, a “business center” consists of several large iMacs under a deconstructed chandelier. Most of the ground floor, however, is occupied by food and drink options. These include the “Mama Pizzeria,” which offers €3 pizzas at long communal tables. Further on is the Mama Shelter’s restaurant, where food is dished up family-style and with unsurprisingly whimsical flair. (A major brunch is served on weekends for a whopping €39 euros per person.) And we haven’t even mentioned the bars—cheeky places to lounge, be seen and throw back a few cocktails.
When we visited, the restaurant was alive with diners snacking in armchairs and at retro-style school desks. A group of friends was competing furiously at foosball. Candles flickered and electronica music grooved. A deep conversation was underway on the smoking terrace. And my, aren’t those waiters attractive!
Some visitors, especially first-timers in Paris, will find the Mama Shelter’s location, in the Saint Blaise neighborhood in the 20th arrondissement, inconvenient. The hotel is a 10-minute walk to the Metro and could never be considered “central.” However, the neighborhood is diverse and vibrant, and presents its own hipster offerings, including the famous “Flèche d’Or” nightclub across the street.
Or you could just hang out at the bar downstairs—the DJ might be better.
Note: This hotel was visited by a EuroCheapo editor. This review is based on cleanliness, location, price and overall quality. EuroCheapo did not charge this hotel to be listed.
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- Bicycle Rental
- Concierge/Booking Services
- Conference room
- Currency Exchange
- Free Newspapers
- Gift shop
- Internet Station
- Laundry Service
- Luggage Storage
- Non-Smoking Hotel
- Office Center
- Reception: 24-Hour
- Shops in the hotel
- Wi-Fi: Free
- Air conditioning
- Bathroom: Private
- Cable TV
- CD player
- DVD player
- Handicap accessible rooms
- Internet Access
- Rooms with view
- Soundproofed Windows
- TV – flat screen
109, Rue De Bagnolet
Père Lachaise-Belleville, Paris, France
01 43 48 48 48
Fax: 01 43 48 49 49
About the Mama Shelter Paris neighborhood
These hotels are located in the 20th arrondissement, near Père Lachaise cemetery (final resting place of famous artists and politicians) and the vibrant Belleville neighborhood. This area is located in Paris' northeast.