You can either look for a hotel by its star ratings, category, reviews and price, or you can first locate Paris areas where you would like to stay according to your visiting taste and preferences and then narrow down your hotel searches from there.
There are 3 000 hotels in Paris, so starting your search at the hotel level can be very overwhelming and lead to a lot of decision confusion, especially if it is your first visit to the capital city.
The second approach makes a lot more sense to me. Once you have located the areas that fit your visiting interests this will have greatly narrowed down the number of hotels to review before your decision.
Searching at the area level with the technique below will quickly narrow down your searches to a hand full of the most popular hotels available for that zone.
How to use Google Maps to find the best Paris hotels
Google Maps is one of the most comprehensive tool for your hotel search and a great time saver when it comes to selecting a place to stay for your next trip. Here is a step by step guide on how to use it efficiently.
Google Maps search tool
1- First go to Google Maps general page. You don’t have to be logged in to search places with Google Maps but if you want to save places you have found you will have to.
Log in with your Google account by clicking on the sign in button on the right corner. If you don’t have a Google account yet follow the sign up process to get one.
Once signed in you should see your Google avatar and your name on the right end corner of the Google Maps page.
Find your area
2- The second step is about fine tuning the areas where you would like to stay. You need to have an idea about what areas of Paris would fit your personal preferences.
Read this article about where to stay in Paris to get a general sense of it and search the TripAdvisor Forums by entering the search terms “Where to stay in Paris with kids”,”Best areas in Paris for shopping” or “Which arrondissement are most central”, something along those lines according to your visiting goals.
Lets say you are interested in staying in Latin quarter, which is a central area on the left bank of the Seine river, you just enter “Latin Quarter” in Google Maps search box to recenter the map on this area.
You can also recenter the map by entering a street name “Champs-Élysées, Paris, France” or a landmark like Eiffel tower or Le Louvre museum.
When you type in any of those terms in the search box, Google will suggest addresses below it. Pick the one that gives your location with “Paris, France” at the end, just to make sure Google understands exactly what you are looking for.
Once you map is re-centered on your location you will see either a red drop place icon where Google believes is the middle of the area you searched for. You might also get a light red filled area on the map if Google knows that there are defined boundaries to it. It is the case below for Le Marais area which has clear set boundaries when Latin Quarter doesn’t, hence the drop icon.
Find hotels in selected areas
3- The next step is to ask Google to show you all hotels in that area. To do so, click on the “Search nearby” link below the search box and enter the word “hotels” in the search bar.
The results are showing on the map. Google returns all the hotels it has referenced in that given area. They are showing either as a a red icon with a bed inside, a red icon with a square or a red dot. Zoom into the area to make sure that all icons are shown.
4- Collect hotels information and compare.
So right there you have a lot of information available to you. When you left click on hotel icons on the map, Google will show you additional information about the property you just selected on the left side of the map.
The first information area gives you the address and contact details for the hotel with phone number and website when available. You will also be able to get directions to and from the hotel by clicking on the blue “Directions” arrow.
The blue “Save” star in that area allows you to bookmark that property inside your Google account and come back to it later when you are done with collecting other hotels that might interest you.
The second block of information on the left column gives you the ability to book a hotel room for the property you have selected. Be aware that this is sponsored information from the Booking.com website and other similar ones, which means they pay Google to show up there.
Availability and prices are indicative but you should look elsewhere on the web as well as on the hotel own website, to see if there aren’t better deals for it.
The last block of information gives you access to pictures of the hotels as well as a 360° street view, which is a nice feature to check the area. You will also find a 360° view of inside areas of the hotel when available.
This allows a panoramic visit of the rooms and different areas of the hotel. Be aware that most pictures of the hotel on this page are provided by the hotel himself.
Below the hotel visuals you will have access to customer reviews by clicking on the blue “reviews” link beside the ratings. These are not verified reviews, always cross check hotel reviews on other websites like Tripadvisor, Yelp, Venere, Booking.com.
Simply Google “the name of the hotel + reviews”, the first page should return reviews of the hotel on different booking and review websites.
Your starred hotels
Go to this address to view all your saved hotels, they will show on the left column of the page as your starred items. Your starred hotels will also show as yellow stars on the general Google Maps as you zoom back into the area where the hotels are located.
So there you go! Now you have a list of hotels located close to the area you are looking for, you can now keep drilling down your list based on average reviews, prices, availability, nearby facilities and so on.
If you zoom into your Google Maps you will see plenty of other useful icons indicating nearby restaurants, shops, monuments, parks… to help you plan your stay successfully.