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Hostel Near Gare du Nord: Peace and Love

dsc04225.jpgIt takes approximately 10 minutes to walk from the Peace & Love Hostel, 245 Rue Lafayette, Metro Jaures to Gare du Nord train station where the Eurostar pulls in from London.
What I immediately liked about this Paris hostel is its location just opposite St. Martin’s canal. On a spring day, the canal looks great (and some of the rooms have views of the canal) It’s also just across the street from the Metro. You can get to every part of Paris if you have the Metro at your fingertips. This is a neighborhood less frequented by tourists, working class and multicultural.
Likewise the staff of Peace and Love is multicultural, hailing from Morocco, Latvia and Moldova, just to name a few countries. The reception is very friendly and welcoming and staff members’ spoken English is excellent. I may even have a friend now in Riga – if we ever get there!
dsc04227.jpgIf you don’t mind walking up six flights of steps, I would definitely recommend Room #15 which has a great view of the canal. This is a double room with a shower (with a double bed) as opposed to bunks which you’ll find in the dorms.
The room was spotless – the toilet is right down the hall. All the general areas appear to be tidy and recent renovations include fresh paint in contemporary colors.
The general reception area looks out on the intersection where Rue Lafayette crosses Rue La Villette and the bridge over the canal.
The bar stays open until 2 am and offers 10 varieties of beer (purportedly the cheapest beer in Paris). There are cooking facilities, a lock box and internet access. Unlike some other hostels, Peace and Love is open 24 hours. There’s no lock out time or curfews – which is handy for night owls.
I found the staff to be very welcoming and wouldn’t have minded staying for a few beers – but then I never would have gotten back to write this post for you.
One of the staff members who’s worked here for the past nine year says that the neighborhood has improved by leaps and bounds. This is a good spot if you plan on taking advantage of the local canal boat tours or if you’ll be coming in by Eurostar. However, if you have any qualms about using the Metro public transport, you may find this neighborhood to be far removed from the major tourist attractions. Because the bar is open until 2 am, this may not be the place for you if you’re an early-to-bed tourist.
Peace and Love Hostel
245 Rue Lafayette 75010
Metro: Jaures
Tel 01 46 07 65 11
Current rates start at 26 Euros for a 9-room dorm to 30 euros for a double (these rates will change with the season).
Note that the link says that this hostel is only for adults UP TO AGE 35. Well, there ARE exceptions. For those of you who love to party at any age, you can feel welcome here. The point is that the staff doesn’t want any unhappy guests. If you’ve come here to get a full night’s sleep – you may want to consider other options, but if you’re looking for a friendly party environment, this is your place.
Photos by Chris Card Fuller 2008

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