4ème Arrondissement – Hotel de Ville Property Insight


The 4ème arrondissement of Paris, also called the Hotel de Ville arrondissement, but commonly known as the Marais quarter, is located at the heart of the centre of Paris and is one of the oldest quarter of the city. The 4th district shares borders with the 1st in the west, the 3rd in the north, the 11th and 12th in the east and the 5th in the south. As it is located on the right bank of the Seine River it also shares borders with the Parisian river. The eastern part of the City Island, and the Saint Louis Island are also part of the district. The area gathers around 29,138 inhabitants and the area is losing inhabitants every year.

The fourth district of Paris is one of the most touristic areas of the city. It gathers landmarks such as Notre-Dame de Paris cathedral in the City Island, the Hotel de Ville, the Georges Pompidou centre, and one of the most sought after area in Paris, the Marais quarter. As expected, dwellings in this part of the French capital are very expensive (one of the most expensive in Paris).

The 4th arrondissement provides a good overview of both the religious and the community way of life, as it gathers the two most representative monuments of them (Notre Dame cathedral and the Hotel de Ville). The area is also one of the culturally richest parts of the city, offering to visitors many varied museums, as well as vibrant and typical way of life (Marais quarter).

All arrondissements in Paris are divided into four administrative quarters; as follow are the quarters of the 4th arrondissement.

  • Quartier Saint-Merri: 6,523 inhabitants. It is a very densely populated quarter and also a very old area. Strolling in the streets you will see houses from the 14th, 15th and 16th centuries. In this quarter you will find the Hotel de Ville, one of the most symbolic monuments in the community life of Paris. The former building was built in 1357, but after a fire during the Commune de Paris it was entirely rebuilt between 1874 and 1885 at the same place. Hotel de Ville square, formerly named the Place de Grève has also had a significant role in Paris' history. It was, during the Middle Ages, the square where executions took place. Nowadays, the Hotel de Ville square is a car-free area and a place of events.
  • Quartier Saint-Gervais: 10,487 inhabitants. It is the most populated quarter of the district, and also the most densely populated. This quarter is characterized by the numerous mansions and old hotels which are to be found in many streets. Indeed, it was a very fashionable quarter during Middle Ages, and noble families used to dwell in this part of the city.
  • Quartier de l’Arsenal: 9,474 inhabitants. The area was named after the royal arsenal which has been existing since 1533. In 1757 it was transformed into a library (Arsenal Library) and it is nowadays one of the most considerable libraries in the city. The quarter is also home of a marina (Arsenal Harbour).
  • Quartier Notre-Dame: 4,087 inhabitants. The last quarter of the 4th arrondissement was obviously named after Notre-Dame de Paris cathedral. It gathers the two natural islands of the Seine (only a part of the City Island, and the entire Saint Louis Island). Saint Louis Island is a residential area where plenty of hotels and mansions are to be found.
  • Le Marais: it is not an administrative quarter, but a historical quarter, and it is split between the 3rd and the 4th arrondissement. Le Marais is kind of the London’s Soho, for it is a very lively area where you will find many pubs, restaurants, lovely squares and green spaces but also the Chinese quarter, the gay quarter and the artists quarter. The area was also the first protected territory, for it gathers many museums, historical monuments, and exceptional architecture.
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4ème Arrondissement - Hotel de Ville Immobilier & Property Market Trends

The fourth arrondissement is the third arrondissement most expensive in Paris (after the 6th and the 7th). Owing to the Marais quarter (one of the most lively and fashionable in Paris), and to its ideal location in the heart of Paris it is a very sought-after area; moreover if you add the fact that dwellings are rare, and as a result offer is scarce, it is no wonder that prices are prohibitive.

These last months, while property prices were decreasing worldwide and all over France, prices in some arrondissements in Paris were actually slightly increasing. It has been the case for the 4th arrondissement, along with the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 7th. As a matter of fact, house prices in late 2008 were around €8,860/sq m, while during the first trimester of 2009 they were around €9,250/sq m. If we compare these figures to the Parisian average, we notice that the arrondissement is indeed rather expensive (respectively €7,117/sq m and €7,024/sq m).

Even if the average is around €9,250/sq m in early 2009, apartments in some parts of the district can be over €10,000/sq m, and even in Saint Louis Island they reach €17,000/sq m.

If you are in funds, buying a property in this posh area is definitely an excellent investment both for personal use and for a buy-to-let. Indeed, if buying prices are very high, so are letting prices, and with €32.80/sq m/month return on investment is guaranteed. All the more so as demand for rent is very high as many people fancy living in this sought-after area but do not have the income to buy a property.

To get updated info about the property prices in Paris, please browse our French Property Market Reports published in the News Section every month.

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Characteristics of the 4ème Arrondissement – Hotel de Ville

  • Historical monuments: the fourth arrondissement gives visitors a good overview of what used to be the medieval Paris. The mansions of the Saint Louis and City Islands and the narrow streets with half-timbered houses of the Marais quarter will bring you some centuries back. Not to mention some very well renowned monuments, such as Notre Dame de Paris cathedral, one of the most beautiful Gothic cathedral in France and Europe, and one of the symbols of the French capital city; the Hotel Dieu, the unique Parisian hospital until the Renaissance, and built in 651 on the City Island; the Hotel de Ville, the symbol of the Parisian community; the Saint Jacques Tower, in the middle of the eponymous square, only remain of what used to be a beautiful Gothic style church, etc.

  • Cultural heritage: in addition to the historical heritage, the 4th arrondissement offers a contemporary stage with a large cultural heritage. For instance, the Centre Georges Pompidou is a good combination of both as it offers a large collection of contemporary art, in a modern building. The Arsenal Library located in the eponymous quarter is one of the oldest in Paris and is nowadays a branch of the national Library.

  • Famous streets: - rue du Temple, is one of the oldest streets in Paris. It is 1,335 metre long and was created during the 14th century. The Rue du Temple goes from rue Rivoli until Place de la Republique. - rue Vieille-du-Temple , is located at the heart of the Marais quarter. It is home of many hotels, and also many prestigious art galleries, such as Yvon Lambert and the Xippas gallery. - boulevard Henri IV, starts in Saint Louis Island and ends in the Bastille square. The Boulevard gives way to many nice squares and houses some beautiful mansions.

  • Squares: the fourth arrondissement is mainly renowned for Notre Dame de Paris and the Marais quarter, buy let’s not forget some important squares of the arrondissement which has made the history of Paris. The most famous is with no doubt the Place de la Bastille, the symbolic place of the French revolution where used to stand the jail-fortress which was then destroyed. Nowadays the square is the symbol of protests, and demonstrations usually start from there. The Vosges square is another famous square as it stands out for its architecture. Indeed, the square is lined with residential buildings all designed the same way: they are two-storey high buildings made with red and white bricks, they have a blue sharply-sloping slate roof and small window-panes. In order to maintain this unity the square has been under protection since 1960. Other squares include the Hotel de Ville square and the Saint Paul square.

  • Night life: as already mentioned, the Marais quarter is the equivalent of London’s Soho, as much for its entertainment activities, as for it houses the Chinese community and the gay community.There are plenty of pubs, restaurants, bars, for youth as well as for families, couples and retired people.

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Take a closer look at the Paris property market:
1er arrondissement 2ème arrondissement 3ème arrondissement
4ème arrondissement 5ème arrondissement 6ème arrondissement
7ème arrondissement 8ème arrondissement 9ème arrondissement
10ème arrondissement 11ème arrondissement 12ème arrondissement
13ème arrondissement 14ème arrondissement 15ème arrondissement
16ème arrondissement 17ème arrondissement 18ème arrondissement
19ème arrondissement 20ème arrondissement