Our new apartment in Paris!

Our tiny, 450 sq. ft. apartment is located on the left bank just across the Seine from Notre Dame. We look right at that beautiful cathedral. We checked out 9 different apartments that we found on the internet, noting in the process that www.pap.fr  was the easiest site to navigate. Apartments with more square footage did not equate to better condition or better neighborhood, so we chose a smaller place with the best location and remodel job. It was surprising how few options we had for furnished long term rentals. Wouldn’t you know it the first apartment we looked at was the best one! Of course we didn’t understand how nice it was until we compared. I’ll post a gallery of photos so you can look around.

We have a small bedroom with windows opening to a non traffic street. All the apartment windows are double glazed, which is good because the road in front has heavy traffic. There is a cozy reading nook with lots of cushions, a living room with couch/pull out bed, and a wooden table that can expand to seat 6. The tiny kitchen is open to the living room. It contains dishwasher, washing machine, refrigerator, microwave (which can also be used for grilling or roasting) 2 burner electric cook top, fan with hood and cabinets for glasses, dishes, pots and pans. The bathroom is tiled with marble floors and walls, though one whole wall is mirrored, and there is tub/shower and double sinks. The heat is electric (3 separate wall units.) Water is heated with gas. We have great Internet access and a flat screen TV. Apart from the marble bath, all other  flooring is wood.

The landlord provides an iron and ironing board, vacuum cleaner, mop, swifter, toaster, coffee maker, cooking utensils, bedding-though you buy your own sheets, towels and pillow cases. Our biggest problem was where to store the suitcases-they are stacked  atop a small cabinet in the bedroom. All walls are white. Windows have privacy/sun shades.


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  1. Bob Spader

    Looks very livable at 450 sq. ft. Must make you think about the “need” for some of the bigger houses back in Kitsap County.

    • Brenda Prowse

      Hi, Bob, Hugh and I were just talking about our home in Poulsbo and wondering why we had built such a large place for only 2 people.

    • Brenda Prowse

      Hi, Karen, I love the reading “nook” where I can hide out, view Notre Dame out the north window and practice French. It is still very cold here so I wrap up in the duvet!

    • Brenda Prowse

      Hi Dianne, we are starting to explore our new neighborhood. This morning we went on a 2 hour walking tour of the Latin Quarter. It was called “Hemingway’s Walks” and was led by a wonderful, humorous and bright Englishman named Chris who works for “Paris Walks.” He led us down the Mouffetard market street, into the historic church of St. Etienne-du-Mont(the side steps of this church are where Woody Allen had Owen Wilson wait for the time machine car to transport him to 1920’s Paris in his movie “Midnight in Paris.” We also walked into the courtyard where James Joyce holed up in a friend’s apartment wrote and later revised “Ulysses.” We saw the outside of the apartment where Hadley and Ernest Hemingway first stayed when they moved to Paris. I was glad that I had read “The Paris Wife” and “A Moveable Feast” not too long ago as our guide made several references to it-even read some excerpts from The books. Chris highly recommended another book called “Quartet” by Jean Rhys, a mid 20th century novelist best known for her book, “Wide Sargasso Sea.” See the Paris Walks web site for more information about all the Paris Tours that Hugh and I will be enjoying.

    • Brenda Prowse

      Hi Deb, we stumbled into Notre Dame the day before yesterday and were lucky enough to be able to take a tour with an English speaking guide. She was so knowledgeable- only comes to Paris once a month to give these tours to benefit Parisian students.

    • Brenda Prowse

      Hi Niki, it is nice to be here and be able to concentrate on other things besides apartment search. We are starting to explore the neighborhood.

    • Brenda Prowse

      Hi Dale, yes it is a wonderful location. It was quite fun searching for the place. The rental paperwork was very complicated and detailed but definitely worth it.

  2. Vivi Ann Parnell

    What a darling place. Not much like an ordinary apt. in central Paris. Live your Parisian life to the fullest in the best location.

  3. Denise Bauman

    I just logged in to your blog tonight. Did I ever tell you that our daughter spent a year (actually less) when she was studying linguistics at Georgetown. She said that it was hard being away from friends in a big city where it WAS very lonely.But she travelled alone and stayed with a family that was kind of weird. You have encountered my impressions, very modern and yet small. We’ll see how you do moving from such a big place to such a small one.

    • Brenda Prowse

      Hi Denise, so nice to hear from you! I didn’t realize that your daughter had lived here in Paris. Thinking of you and Jeff and hoping that spring is coming soon to Poulsbo. Hello to your mom and dad too.

    • Hugh Nelson

      There’s a really nice couch in the corner where Hoover could hang out. Good view of the street but out of sight from the living room.

  4. Jan Hiatt

    Oh that is such a wonderful apartment! I can see you settling down very nicely into life there! Speaking of books, Susan Vreeland has a couple wonderful ones about the late 1800’s impressionist art world in Paris- “Luncheon of the Boating Party ” and “Life Studies”. Reading them, watching the world go by where they are based, would be good…. *jealous*

  5. Kathryn

    Hi Brenda and Hugh ~ looks wonderful….what a great location! I loved the Rue Mouffetard…..I am about to start the Paris Wife….and I’ll look to your blog for info for our upcoming trip!

  6. Gay Brownlee

    It appears you two have everything you need: each other and the possibility to live your dream! I don’t think it could get much better than that.

  7. Gretchen Pickens

    Brenda & Hugh, You have found the perfect spot ! When I moved into just 850 sq.ft, I realized who needs more ?- and yours is 1/2 that.
    The location is the best. Your realtor expertise comes through.

    All is great here. My 17year old grand daughter spent last weekend here with me, we had such a good time – movies, shopping,eating and just hanging out
    together. She will be off to college next year, not sure where yet. My grandson in California will be going to Boise State next year.

    Great to hear from you. Hugs, Gretchen and Daisy Mae.

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