The Butte aux Cailles - 10 mins from the hotel
Located between the Boulevard Auguste Blanqui, Rue Bobillot, Rue de Tolbiac and Rue Vergniaud in the 13th arrondissement of Paris, the Butte aux Cailles gets its name from Pierre Caille, who bought a little vineyard overlooking the River Bièvre in the 16th century. Untouched by Baron Haussmann’s grand renovation of Paris in the 1860s, this neighbourhood has kept its village feel. Come here to while away the hours in its gently sloping little streets and semi-pedestrianised paths, where little houses with pretty little gardens stand. There’s Passage Barrault, Passage Sigault, Passage Bolton and Rue Daviel, where at No 10 you’ll find “La Petite Alsace” (Little Alsace). This former workers’ housing development, opened in 1913, is composed of 40 or so little terraced houses with pointed roofs, set around charming terraces, leafy trees and flower-lined lawns - a setting that feels more rural and rustic than urban.
Directly across from here lies the Villa Daviel, a little cul-de-sac lined with houses with coloured gates and courtyards filled with trees, bushes and flowers that look gorgeous on sunny days.
The Butte aux Cailles was also the scene of barricades during the Commune de Paris uprising following the Franco-Prussian War, and it has kept its communal and artistic soul. Even today, the Butte aux Cailles still shows a rebellious side, with its walls covered in street art and graffiti. Its bars and restaurants have become hot spots for all generations. Two places worth visiting for really getting a feel of the Butte’s certain je-ne-sais-quoi are Le Temps des Cerises, a cooperative restaurant with great prices that pays homage to the Commune of 1871, and the Merle Moqueur bar, a real institution where many an idea gets discussed.
The Butte aux Cailles in the 13th arrondissement is 10 minutes’ walk from Hotel Coypel.