When we arrived at our hotel, I was surprised to find the street barricaded and patrolled by armed guards wearing bulletproof vests over their uniforms. Our hotel was on a small one-lane street and seemed to be the only one in the
area that was blocked and being patrolled. The bellman had to walk down the street to pick up our luggage and lead us to the hotel. I later found out from the front desk of the hotel that the reason for the heavy security is because the U.S. Embassy is around the corner from the hotel. With all the controversy over the Iraq war and U.S. policies at that time, security had been beefed up in an effort deter any terrorist acts. Our street remained guarded around the clock for the rest of our stay. It was probably the quietest street in the city.
Our travel agent had helped me find this hotel. I chose it because of its proximity to some of Paris' major attractions and because it has a fitness center with a treadmill. The treadmill request was from Traci, who ran her first marathon three days after we returned from Paris. The fitness center has a half dozen or so cardio machines. Traci did use the treadmill during our stay. Her only complaint about the fitness center, was that it was located on the bottom floor of the hotel behind a labyrinth of doors and hallways. She said she felt a sense of eerie isolation when she worked out down there alone.
Le Faubourg hotel was fabulous. Upon our arrival, we met Teri who worked at the front desk. He gave us a tour of the hotel and our room. He was very friendly. I practiced speaking French with him each morning before Traci and I headed out for the day.
Our room was medium-sized and nicely decorated. There were terry cloth bathrobes and slippers for both of us. Each evening, the room attendant would turn down our bed, and leave chocolate candy, bottled water, room service menus, and the weather forecast for the next day.
Breakfast, whether eaten in the dining room or ordered via room service, was included in the price of our hotel. This was not a continental breakfast either. It was a ,"Have a seat. May I take your order?," type of breakfast that included eggs, breakfast meats, a bread/pastry basket, fresh fruit cups, freshly squeezed juices, and more. The food was excellent.
The hotel also had a computer with a high-speed Internet connection in one of the lounges. The use of this computer was free of charge. We used it occasionally to check email and once to get directions to one of the restaurants we visited.
Finally, I have to give props to the concierge staff at Le Faubourg. These guys hooked us up with accurate directions, reservations, and great suggestions on how to take advantage of our limited time in Paris.