Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

The Independent's journalism is supported by our readers. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission.

Best cheap hotels in Paris: Where to stay for value for money

Paris hotels don’t have to cost the earth. Here are the most stylish hotels in the City of Light that won’t break the bank

Carolyn Boyd
Wednesday 08 February 2023 11:35 GMT
Hotel Port Royal in the leafy fifth arrondissement
Hotel Port Royal in the leafy fifth arrondissement

There’s so much to see, do, eat, shop, admire and ogle in Paris. Whether it’s visiting the Eiffel Tower, wandering through the Louvre museum or enjoying one of the incredible dining spots, there are many ways to keep busy exploring the French city. So why bother splurging on an expensive bed for the night when you’re hardly going to be there?

But before you go roughing it, remember that Paris demands a certain level of style – it’s the home of fashion, romance and fine cuisine, after all. But the great thing about this city is that there are many ways to enjoy all of this at a budget-friendly cost. You can most certainly enjoy all that the city of love has to offer whilst staying in affordable lodging.

Enter, a host of fantastic hotels, hostels and even a campsite where it’s possible to find a chic abode without splashing too much cash.

Best for style: Mama Shelter

Neighbourhood: St Blaise

The Starck-designed hotel is the ideal launchpad to explore the hip Belleville district

Mama Shelter started the trend of design on a budget when it opened in 2009. Having extended across France and beyond in the past decade, with hotels in Rio, Los Angeles and Belgrade, its style-on-a-budget brand has gained fans worldwide. Their Paris East hotel, close to the Pere Lachaise cemetery and the hip Belleville district, is the original and was designed by Philippe Starck. It’s since been joined by a further two Paris locations (see below).

The top French designer’s quirky vibe runs throughout the 170 bedrooms, which are small and cocoon-like with black and grey decor, as well as the laidback restaurant, where you can listen to music while you dine Sundays.

Best for hanging out: Hoxton Paris

Neighbourhood: Bourse-Sentier

Jacques Bar is ideal for an early evening cocktail

Following on from its success in London, the Hoxton opened in Paris in the summer of 2017 and has quickly become the place to see and be seen, whether staying in the hotel, sipping cocktails in one of its bars or dining in its restaurant. While its size – the 172 bedrooms are set on long corridors over four floors – can feel a little impersonal at times, the personal touch comes from the friendly staff, while the cosy florals and velvets with full-height windows and Moroccan-inspired cocktails in Jacques Bar make it a destination in itself. Rooms are thoughtfully designed with leather headboards, herringbone fabrics and parquet floors.

Best for a really tight budget: Generator Paris

Neighbourhood: Cité Rouge

Bunk up on the doorstep of the cool Canal Saint-Martin district

There was a time when the word hostel was a byword for grimy showers, uncomfortable bunks and snoring roommates. But with the new breed of cool hostels from the Generator chain – found throughout Europe – you can expect a fantastic rooftop bar with views towards the Sacré-Coeur, a cool brasserie, free wifi and the cool Canal Saint-Martin district on the doorstep. Of course, they can’t guarantee a lack of snoring roommates, but that’s where the private rooms come in, with various rooms from doubles to up to six beds.

Best for escaping the city: Okko Hotels

Neighbourhood: Various

This relatively new chain of four-star hotels is springing up in cities across France. With its cool concept of smallish rooms balanced with a large central area known as The Club, there’s plenty of space to relax. One of its main attractions is that the room price has no hidden extras and includes an aperitif, snacks, free hotel-wide wifi, national phone calls, pets on request and access to the fitness suite.

The Porte de Versailles hotel is a half-hour train ride from the Eiffel Tower but the Paris Gare de l'Est is conveniently situated smack bang next to Gare du Nord Eurostar terminal.

Best for a fun weekend: Idol Hotel

Neighbourhood: L’Europe

This room is named after Stevie Wonder’s ‘Moon Blue’, though perhaps it looks more like ‘Purple Rain’ (Idol Hote

Get your groove on before you check into this disco-themed hotel, where the rooms are named after classic tunes such as “Ma Cherie Amour”, “Light My Fire” and “Lady Soul”.

Decor is loud, shamelessly bold and wonderfully kitsch – you might never have seen this much gold (in a good way, though) unless you’ve stayed in Trump Towers – but it’s all fantastically fun. Music lovers will also appreciate the concierge’s tips on where to find Paris’ best concerts, gigs and clubs.

Best for digital nomads: Mama Shelter La Défense

Mama Shelter La Defense has various workspaces

La Défense is one of the Parisian locations of the trendy budget brand Mama Shelter. It brings all the quirky design you’d expect to Paris’s business district, 3km west of the French capital’s city limits. But fear not: it’s a speedy three-minute Metro ride to the Champs Elysees and just over 15 minutes to the Louvre.

Interiors are kooky and colourful, with outer-space-themed carpets and matching ceilings, tangerine-tiled shower rooms and free movies for all bedrooms.

A sports bar and rooftop restaurant and drinks terrace provide cool-as-they-come hangout spots, but if you’re mixing business with pleasure you’re also well catered for, with a number of “Ateliers” (meeting rooms) that can be adapted to suit, plus various spots in the vibey, 24-hour lobby to work in, complete with multiple plug sockets and wifi. Helen Coffey

Best for the planet: Solar Hotel

Neighbourhood: Montparnasse

An eco-hotel which keeps prices the same all year round

The pricing policy of this eco-friendly budget hotel is dedicated to being transparent, with everything included in the room price and no surprises, keeping the same price all year round. This extends beyond the generous organic breakfast to also include wifi, free access to the garden and bicycles to borrow to explore the city.

Rooms are simple with white walls and splashes of colour in the blue curtains and orange headboards; some have balconies overlooking the leafy courtyard garden. Among the hotel’s many ecological initiatives, there are solar panels (of course), energy-saving lightbulbs and waste is sorted for recycling.

Best for stopovers: CitizenM

Neighbourhood: Various

Communal areas are a good place to grab a cocktail or relax with a book

With four different hotels in Paris, the most central being that at the Gare de Lyon (making for an easy onward journey the next day) this international brand of design-led, cost-conscious hotels subscribes to the ethos of stack ’em high, sell ’em cheap; but that doesn’t mean that service, decor and facilities are compromised.

The Gare de Lyon hotel has 338 designer rooms, with square beds tucked into the end of the room, fluffy pillows, an in-room power shower and blackout blinds.

The communal areas offer the space that the rooms lack, with cool decor and plenty of room to sit back with a book or sip a cocktail.

Best for location: Hotel Jeanne d’Arc

Neighbourhood: Marais

Recently refurbished and in one of the city’s hippest areas (

Set in the heart of the Marais, one of Paris’ hippest districts, this three-star hotel was always a favourite with those in the know, but since its recent refurb, it is a real gem.

All 34 of its rooms have had a facelift with the elegant decor in neutral tones with splashes of muted colour. The new owners have thought of everything with tea and coffee-making facilities in the rooms, a simple but varied breakfast, and free wifi. If you can tear yourself away, get out into the area’s trendy bars and restaurants for aperitifs and dinner.

Best for a friendly welcome: Hotel Port Royal

Neighbourhood: Croulebarbe

Run by the fourth generation of the same family, this simple but comfortable hotel makes for a great bolthole. It’s situated in the leafy fifth arrondissement, near the Sorbonne and a short stroll from the Jardin des Plantes.

The rooms are dinky and the decor isn’t flash. It’s also worth noting that some of the rooms only have a sink, rather than a full ensuite – shared toilets and showers are on the landing (remember when most hotels were like that?) – but everything is spick and span and staff are friendly.

Best for families: Camping de Paris

Neighbourhood: Bois de Boulogne

Comfy beds in safari-style tents, caravans and cabins 

Many of us have fond memories of camping in France as kids, but if the thought of kipping under damp canvas means you’ve consigned it firmly to the past, think again. The French have well and truly embraced glamping, and at Camping de Paris this means comfy beds and wooden floors in the safari-style tents, or kooky gypsy caravans and cosy cabins.

Set at the edge of the Bois de Boulogne, just 20-25 minutes from some of the main sights, the campsite offers a good option for families or those on a budget.

Fresh croissants can be delivered to your cabin for breakfast. There’s a bar-restaurant on site and, in the summertime, a cool food truck for takeaway meals - it serves pizza and other dishes.

Best for flea market fans: Mob Hotel

Neighbourhood: Saint-Ouen

This hotel in the Saint-Ouen district in northern Paris makes for a super-chic bolthole, with rates that leave plenty of dosh for spending in the nearby flea markets. The 92 bedrooms have bags of personality, with knick-knacks and vintage finds set off against a clean and simple design. There is an inviting rooftop bar serving cocktails as well as a restaurant serving organic and sustainable produce.

Best for kooky interiors: Mama Shelter Paris West

Neighbourhood: Georges Brassens

Mara Shelter West has some buzzy public spaces

The second Paris address for Mama Shelter opened in December 2019, going back to where it all began for the ever-growing global empire of budget-style hotels. Its swish architecture is the work of Jean-Michel Wilmotte, who redesigned the art nouveau landmark the Hotel Lutetia among many other impressive projects, while the kooky interiors are by top designers Dion & Arlescome, and come with an African vibe. There are 207 rooms, a restaurant and roof-top bar from which you can admire Paris’ rooftops. It’s a little further away than other budget hotel options, but still only 15 minutes on the Metro to the centre.

Best for peace and quiet: Hotel Passy Eiffel

Neighbourhood: Eiffel

Hotel Passy Eiffel

Set in the elegant residential 16th arrondissement, the Hotel Passy Eiffel makes for a great bolthole from sightseeing without having to disappear off into the suburbs for the night. It’s just a short walk from Trocadero, and just over the river from the Eiffel Tower. The hotel has its own little courtyard, a spacious lobby and bar area, and its 49 rooms have modern designs some with feature walls.

Best for chic simplicity: Oh la la! Hotel

Neighbourhood: Bastille

Bedrooms at Oh La La overlook the Bastille

Design is key at this bijou hotel in the heart of the Bastille district. With a cosy cocktail bar acting as both reception and lobby, the 16-room hotel is squirrelled away behind a door that masquerades as a bookshelf. The bright en-suite rooms are spread over six floors and offer large comfortable beds, TVs and unlimited WiFi, though the lack of lift means packing light is recommended. Its location means it’s an easy walk to the trendy Marais district and the hip coffee shops of the Canal Saint Martin in the other direction.

Read more of our reviews on the best hotels in Paris

Read more on France travel

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in