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Paris/La Défense

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Paris : La Défense
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La Défense is the modern high-rise and office-tower district of Paris, located beyond the arrondissements of central Paris at the start of the western outskirts of the city, beyond the last Parisian loop of the river Seine. La Défense is the site of the Grande Arche, one of Paris' most modern and imposing landmarks, situated at the western end of the grand axis formed by the Champs-Elysées, the Place de la Concorde and the Arc de Triomphe.

La Défense is a purpose-built business district; in the 1960s, Charles de Gaulle led an effort to level the area and concentrate skyscrapers in a single business district, rather than altering the character of downtown Paris with large commercial buildings.

Get in[edit]

La Défense

By métro[edit]

  • La Défense (ligne 1)
  • Esplanade de la Défense (ligne 1)

Note: La Défense is accessible using a standard T+ ticket or a zone 1-2 only pass by Metro line 1.

By train[edit]

  • La Défense can be reached by RER A, Transilien L, Transilien U, tramway T2, station La Défense.

Note: By RER A, La Défense requires a zones 1-3 pass or a ticket for the destination.

Note²: By Transilien, La Défense requires a ticket purchased to the destination or a zones 1-3 pass.

It can be very confusing but 'Les Quatres Temps' is colour coded. There are many maps around the shopping centre.

See[edit][add listing]

Grande Arche
La Défense seen from Arc de Triomphe
  • Grande Arche de la Defense, 1 Le Paris de La Défense, +33 (0)1 49 07 27 27, [1]. A high-rise building that looks more like hollow cube than an actual arch. The viewing platform on its top has been closed to visitors since an elevator accident in April 2010[2].  edit
  • Skyscrapers in all shapes and forms. Driving and/or walking around the area can be visually stimulating, if you find pleasure in modern glass-and-steel construction.

Do[edit][add listing]

Buy[edit][add listing]

  • Les 4 Temps, 15 Le Parvis de La Défense, +33 (0)1 47 73 54 44, [3]. The "Quatre Temps" shopping mall, which when constructed was the largest shopping centre in Europe, has numerous big name as well as small stores, a multiplex cinema (showings in French and subtitled foreign) as well as a large supermarket and grocery store. It is accessible from an entrance to the left of the "Grande Arche" or via the RER/metro station. The mall has 230 stores (Auchan, C&A, Darty, Virgin, Zara, Go Sport, H&M, Uniqlo, Toys’R’Us), 16 movie theater screens and 40 restaurants. You will be required to show inside your bags to security persons as you enter the shopping centre.  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

Besides the 40+ food and snack places at the 4 Temps, rue de Bezons has a few budget eateries, including a good bakery, a couple of Turkish joints and a McDonald's that normally stays open until midnight.

The La Coupole underground gallery, accessible through exit G of the metro station, is somewhat depressing but convenient for its restaurants and express cafés.

  • Côté Parvis (Hôtel Hilton), 2, pl de la Défense, +33 1 46 92 10 10, [4].  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • Apogé, 21 esplanade du Général de Gaulle (metro line 1, esplanade de la Defense, beneath the Allianz tower), 01 49 03 03 03, [5]. 12h-20h, Mon-Sat.. Apogé is a dynamic, all-in-one stop for French wine. Part bar, part merchant, part oenology school, its passionate, friendly founders are happy to share their expert advice. Not only are over 100 wines available by the glass, but every bottle for sale can be tasted before purchase. A beautiful terrace and frequent tastings with producers.  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

The area around Place Charras, in Courbevoie is a short bus ride or a 15-minute walk away from the metro. It has a few hotels such as a Mercure and the basic but moderately priced hotel-residence Citéa, which hosts foreign students from the Alliance Française in Paris.

  • Hilton Paris La Defense, 2 Place de la Defense, +33 1 4692 1010, [6]. (48.893266,2.238578) edit
  • Hotel Mercure Paris La Defense 5, 18-30 rue Baudin, Place Charras, +33 (0)1 49 04 75 00, [7].  edit
  • Citéa La Défense Place Charras, 1, rue de Bitche, +33 1 56 37 72 00, [8].  edit
  • Renaissance Paris Hotel La Defense, 60 Jardin de Valmy, +33 (0)1 41 97 50 50 ‎, [9].  edit
  • Hotel Novotel Paris La Défense, 2 Boulevard de Neuilly, +33 (0)1 41 45 23 23, [10].  edit
  • Hotel Pullman Paris La Defense, 11 Avenue d l'Arche, +33 1 47 17 50 00.  edit
  • Mövenpick Hotel Paris Neuilly, 58 boulevard Victor Hugo, +33 1 55 6364 65, [11].  edit


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