Arguably the most glamorous district of Paris, the Eighth arrondissement is centred on the prestigious Avenue des Champs-Élysées which connects the majestic Place de la Concorde to the monumental Arc de Triomphe. The 8th is one of the wealthiest arrondissements of Paris.
A few words about the 8th arrondissement
The Eighth arrondissement of Paris (le huitième arrondissement) is situated on the right bank of River Seine and is centred on the Champs-Élysées and the Historical Axis.
The district is both a tourist hotspot and one of the places where the Parisian upper middle class lives.
It is home to many shops, luxury hotels and the headquarters of major companies.
Most importantly, the Eighth arrondissement is a place of power, as it includes the Elysée Palace and the Ministry of the Interior, as well as seven embassies of G20 countries.
In addition, the district is home to a great number of multinational firms and banks, making it one of France’s premier business districts behind La Défense.
The tourism industry is also present with prestigious monuments and places of interest: the Arc de Triomphe, the Avenue des Champs-Élysées, and the Place de la Concorde.
There are many world-class hotels, most of them are located near the Champs-Élysées: George V, Plaza Athénée, Hôtel de Crillon, Royal Monceau…
In the neighbourhood of the Champs-Élysées, the Belle Époque era has given Paris two magnificent edifices: the Grand-Palais and the Petit-Palais.
The 4 districts of the 8th arrondissement
Monumental and prestigious, the Champs-Elysées district includes the “most beautiful avenue in the world“, the most imposing square in Paris and, surrounded by greenery, the golden triangle of luxury.
There is no avenue in Paris more frequented. Indeed, the Champs-Élysées district is above all a prestigious commercial district where the major international brands are displayed, but it is also home to a large number of embassies and company headquarters.
The Faubourg-du-Roule district is a more residential area, with a social background similar to the Ternes (17th) and Chaillot (16th) districts.
It is home to the headquarters of many financial institutions (banks, insurance companies, law firms).
There, the crowd spills over into the cafés and cinemas, the fashionable shops and car windows that line the Champs Elysées and its surroundings.
It changes its face around the Paris Chamber of Commerce and the great museums around it.
The Madeleine district is an intermediate district mixing residential and business districts around the Garnier Opera and the boulevard Malesherbes.
Political and diplomatic life, antique dealers and art galleries, haute couture and perfumery rule the Madeleine district.
Visitors will find shops and luxury hotels around the rue du Faubourg-Saint-Honoré.
Finally, the district is also home to the Presidency of the Republic (Élysée Palace), the Ministry of the Interior, the French Naval staff, the embassies of the United States, Great Britain and Japan, and large clubs.
Finally, the residential and more popular Europe district is home to an upper middle class comparable to the Batignolles district (17th).
Residential, airy, wealthy and lively, the Europe district is dedicated to education, commerce and the railway industry.
It is also home to the busy Saint-Lazare train station and many shops close to the department stores of the 9th arrondissement.
Beyond the Saint-Lazare station, not far from the town hall, along the wide Haussmannian perspectives, craft life rubs shoulders with cultural life. Around the delightful Parc Monceau stand the Cernuschi, Camondo and Jacquemart André museums, and the magnificent mansions built by the 19th-century high-bourgeoisie.
The 8th arrondissement: facts and figures
The Eighth arrondissement of Paris covers an area of 3.88 km2 with a population of 35,655 (2019).
The minimum altitude is 29 m above sea level and the maximum altitude is 59 m.
Along with La Défense, it is the economic driver of the capital, with more than 180,000 jobs (11% of Parisian jobs), mainly in the financial, service and tourism sectors.
The district is also a strategic crossroads for public transport with the Saint-Lazare station, a veritable hub for all the western suburbs of Paris.
5 of the 11 established Parisian palaces are located in the district: Le Bristol, Crillon, George V and Plaza Athénée, La Réserve Paris.
Metro lines and stations in the 8th arrondissement
The 8th arrondissement is one of the best served by public transport, with a large number of services.
The 8th arrondissement is easily accessible by public transport with two RER stations (Charles de Gaulle Étoile for RER A and Haussmann for RER E) and the railway station of Saint-Lazare which serves the western suburbs and Normandy.
The district includes:
- the second-largest train station in Europe (Paris-Saint-Lazare)
- in addition, the metro station serving this station (Saint-Lazare) is the second busiest in the Paris métro network.
- the metro line 1 that crosses the 8th arrondissement is the busiest métro line of Paris.
- and the busiest RER A line is the busiest urban railway line in Europe.
- With 16 bus lines, the Saint-Lazare hub is the largest in Paris.
In conclusion, the 8th arrondissement has :
- 9 metro lines ;
- 2 RER lines;
- 2 Transilien lines;
- 28 bus lines;
- 14 Noctilien lines.
- however, no tramway line!
Where to stay in the 8th arrondissement?
Hotels in Paris vary from stunning luxurious places like the Ritz and the Meurice to much simpler hotels in charming older parts of the city. However, due to its central location, you will find the level of prices of all types of accommodation quite high in the 8th arrt. Depending on your budget, might want to find cheaper accommodation further away from the hyper centre of Paris!
Click on this link for a list of accommodation in the 8th arrondissement or browse the map below:
Public institutions in the 8th arrt.
The 8th arrondissement is a place of power due to the presence of the following institutions:
- the Palais de l’Élysée (official residence of the President of the French Republic)
- the Ministry of Intérieur (Hôtel Beauvau)
In addition, the arrondissement is home to 7 embassies of G20 countries:
- Saudi Arabia
Main places of interest in the 8th arrt.
Centred on the Historical Axis (Voie Triomphale), the 8th arrondissement boasts some of Paris’ premier monuments and sites.
Churches in the 8th arrondissement
The 8th arrondissement features some interesting sanctuaries:
- La Madeleine. The church is a perfect example of the neoclassical architectural style with its portico in the form of a Greek temple. It took 85 years to build due to the political turmoil in France at the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th century.
- Eglise Saint-Augustin. A Romanesque and Byzantine style church dating from 1871 at the crossroads of Boulevard Haussmann and Boulevard Malesherbes.
- The Chapelle expiatoire. The expiatory chapel occupies the site of the former Madeleine cemetery where the bodies of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette were buried before being transferred to the Saint-Denis basilica on 21 January 1815.
Parks and public gardens in the 8th arrt.
In addition to Parisian squares (small public gardens), the 8th arrondissement is home to two large, renowned urban parks:
- the Champs-Elysées gardens. On either side of the Avenue des Champs-Elysées, les jardins des Champs-Elysées form a green space between the Place de la Concorde and the Rond-Point des Champs-Elysées.
- Parc Monceau. Discover the public garden on the blog here.
List of landmarks in the Eighth arrondissement of Paris
Here’s a list of major places of interest make the 8th arrt:
- Arc de Triomphe
- Avenue des Champs-Élysées
- Place de la Concorde
- Grand-Palais and Petit-Palais
- Church of La Madeleine
- Eglise Saint-Augustin
- Parc Monceau
- Élysée Palace (residence of the French President)
- Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré
- Pont Alexandre III
- St. Alexander Newsky Orthodox cathedral
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Also worth a look: the American Cathedral in Paris.
The local HQ of the Episcopal Church is well worth a visit for English speakers, whether Episcopal, Church of England, Lutheran or any other denomination. And its welcoming community may prompt you to stay a little while longer.
The Sunday morning Sung Eucharist will appeal to everyone who loves choral music, thanks to a fine choir and organ – and above all a warm welcome.
Thank you Ken for this great suggestion!
Hermès ! I waited over 50 years to *finally* shop in the flagship location in 2008. I bought two carrés and I still love them both. (Of course, I couldn't really afford it, but hey, it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!)
Oh yes, it is indeed an unmissable shop in the 8th arrondissement!