Paris Practicalities

Call me old-fashioned, but I like to stay in a Parisian hotel that actually looks Parisian. Located in the Latin Quarter, near the wonderful shops of Saint-Germain but not perilously close to them, Hotel du Pantheon has 36 rooms decorated in toile and framed botanical prints. Beneath the rooms' traditional exterior is a highly-functioning interior, however: the hotel was renovated in 2001, and there is WiFi throughout. The staff is courteous and happy to call you a taxi when you don't dare brave the nearby metro in those Louboutins.

Hotel du Pantheon
19, place du Pantheon
Paris, France
+ 33 1 43 54 32 95

Though it may be super kewl to have the Wallpaper guide to Paris, Time Out Paris proved to be the best overall guide. (Full disclosure: I also write for Time Out, but, sadly, not the Paris guide.)

Miss Thing brought this Luxe guide with her, appropriately pictured here at Kong. We used its walking tour of the Marais.

Another excellent insider guide to the Marais is the French blog Haut Marais.

Restaurants were found through Chowhound, Time Out, Wallpaper, various French and Paris-frequenting friends, and of course, the Michelin guide.

Directions were found through... Google maps! Yes, also available in Paris, especially if you have WiFi in your hotel room.

You can now also download Google maps to your mobile phone or Blackberry. The easiest way to do so is to access Google maps via your phone or Blackberry browser and download the free program.

Driving directions were found through the life-changing GPS gadget TomTom. You can buy and download maps of Europe through the TomTom site and upload them onto your device.

P.S. It also helps to speak a bit of French. As Miss Thing infamously quipped at one point, "I'm surprised how many people here don't speak English!" Give French a whirl with a course at NYU's School of Continuing and Professional Studies.