While staying at the Swell Apartment in the Montmartre area of Paris I felt like I was living in a heavenly world of Donovan songs. As strange as it might sound, this apartment was surreal much like Donovan’s free-spirited and dreamy tunes. To give you an idea of what it’s like staying at the Swell Apartment, I am going to walk you on a mini voyage of the flat with a Donovan song dedicated to each room:
The Stairwell Up to Swell
The Song: Hurdy Gurdy Man
The Lyrics: “Down through all eternity/The crying of humanity/’Tis then when the Hurdy Gurdy Man Comes singing songs of love”
My least favorite and the only less than positive point about the Swell Apartment is the three cases of winding stairs that lead you up to the sanctuary. I suppose I’m not in shape and that’s why every time I had to climb the stairs I became: “Hurdy, Gurdy, Gurdy, Gurdy, Gurdy”. Most people do not have a problem with this and very likely enjoy the mini-workout. Plus another way to look at it is the fact that there are many other residents who live in the apartments and climb up the stairs 365 days a year. Once you reach your apartment, you’ll realize the stair climb was well worth it.
The Living Room
The Song: Sunshine Superman
The Lyrics: “Sunshine came softly through my window today” and “You can just sit there a thinking on your velvet throne” and “When you’ve made your mind up forever to be mine”
The living room or ‘salon’ is a study in stylish Parisian décor with a 1920’s twist. A red velvet couch, deep burgundy colored velvet curtains, a silky striped chaise, oak paneling and Modigliani prints all make this room swanky and “swell” yet very cozy. Also the words “L’AMOUR” spelled out in wrought iron letters on the wall, will remind you why “Sunshine Superman” fits so well. Enjoy a couple glasses of wine in the living room before going down and experiencing the fun that Montmartre has to offer including cafe’s at your doorstep, French pubs and nightclubs.
The Song: Wear Your Love like Heaven
The Lyrics: “Color and sky brush and blue/Scarlet fleece changes you Crimson ball sinks from view”
Highlights of the gorgeous bedroom include the sea foam colored walls, a fireplace with a white wooden mirror over it, a petite vanity featuring a boa feathered lamp and the star of the room: a heavenly double bed with lucid drapes and puffy white goose down bedding that feel like you’re sleeping on clouds this is topped off with a dangling crystal chandelier hanging from the ceiling to just a couple feet above the foot of the bed. Listen to “Wear Your Love like Heaven” and you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.
The Song: Jennifer Juniper
The Lyrics: “Jennifer Juniper lives upon the hill, Jennifer Juniper, sitting very still”
There is something so charming and dainty about the kitchen that the best song that I can relate is Jennifer Juniper. The window in the kitchen reveals a high drop down as well as the other apartments overlooking the courtyard in the center. I can imagine asking a neighbor across the way for a recipe from their kitchen window. But back to reality, the kitchen offers a kettle, pots, pans, glassware, utensils and a washer.
The Song: Atlantis
The Lyrics: “Way down below the ocean where I wanna be she may be”
The powerful shower features multicolored mosaic tiles, a heated towel rail, plenty of cabinet space and best of all a real cleanliness that is hard to find in a lot of hotels that you would probably be paying the same price for. As is the case with most Parisian apartments, the toilet is in a separate room from the shower, but that’s okay because the toilet is stylish too! With the toilet room featuring cobalt blue walls and a creepy yet beautiful statue, every detail in this apartment is not overlooked.
Donovan songs aside, I cannot stress enough that if you’re traveling to Paris even for only a short time that renting this Swell pad is a much better deal and offers a much more unique experience than staying in a hotel.