Hotel C.O.Q, which stands for community of quality, is a new property in the bourgeoning 13th arrondissement of Paris. It was born out of the love the proprietors have of both the area and a space where community is the focus. Removed from the typical Paris scenery which graces postcards, the hotel was formed in an area largely known for its Chinese and Vietnamese immigrant population. Which, of course, means access to some of the best Asian-fusion restaurants in town. But, it’s the sense of community and effort to bring about something different to the hotel landscape that stands out here.
On a quiet street near the Place d’Italie metro stop, Hotel C.O.Q offers 50 rooms, in three categories, decorated with a mix of modern touches and antique-style furnishings – all made in France. You might find an 18th-century inspired paining juxtaposed against a desk from today’s modern era. Attention to lighting is key here, both in the lobby and rooms, as there are several options for adjusting lights to fit your mood. Rooms range from small to large, some with clever walk-in showers that are hidden behind the bed wall and allow access to both sides of the space, all very sexy. C.O.Q branded glass water bottles are offered to guests in-room as well as open bathrooms with noble materials like wood and marble.
The lobby at the hotel is where the hotel’s name meets its objective. Community. Guests are encouraged to interact. Tables with books, games and other activities dot the space. High tables and low tables are located in a large kitchen-like area that is open for guests to indulge in coffee, tea and snacks around the clock. Breakfast is also served here.
The hotel is virtually frills-free, but offers essentials for a delightful stay. The room rates are reasonable for Paris and the mood is fun and intimate. I give the owners credit for their efforts in experimenting with both design and emotion here, creating a place where community is encouraged – a rarity in today’s often-hectic world.