Novotel Bercy Does Not So Great Cocktails

Novotel Bercy
85, de Bercy
75012 Paris
Tel: 01 43 42 30 00

Forest fact: I have a soft spot for average, bog standard, budget chain hotels you find scattered along the freeways of middle America. You know the ones I mean: they always have sufficient strip mall & General Dollar Store action close by, there’s all you can eat breakfast buffets and a fine selection of Bigelow teas on tap all day long in reception. I totally get into it and use all the amenities possible. I’m the one who actually uses the 3 machines in the empty fitness center & skips down the nappy, brown carpeted hallway to visit the hot tub room. And, the ice machines…ah, the ice machines, don’t even get me started.

So, the Novotel Bercy, while a slight step up from a Holiday Inn and with no strip malls in site, reminds me of the cheesy, brightly lit, average businessman’s hotel. But, for as much as I love these places, the Novotel Bercy: not so much. I’ve been sitting on this post for several weeks with a bit of a ‘why bother’ attitude. But I’ve decided it merits a little shout-down to prevent others from following in my footsteps. Back in January, Kate come up from Geneva and took me to a concert at Bercy for my birthday (thanks, Kate!) The concert fell on a Wednesday, so tried to squeeze in a quickie cocktail adventure prior to the show. I didn’t have any ideas for around Bercy & the few I came up with didn’t work (temporary closures, etc.) So I thought a hotel bar is always a semi-safe bet.

I was wrong. Although Gin and Tonic is the first featured cocktail on their list of 6 cocktails at 6.95, there’s no gin in the house. There’s actually not much at all to choose from in the house. I took a cuba libre. Unusual for Paris: the barman was very heavy handed with his pour. The general vibe is a bit depressing even if the barman was friendly enough. So it was a great concert, but crap cocktails. And, I’m still on the lookout for cocktail spots in the area…so share if you’ve had better cocktail luck around Bercy!

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Cocktail Expert Forest Collins is the creator of 52martinis, an online guide to the best cocktail bars in Paris and other small batch spirits news from France. We've also recently launched an app so you can keep all that bar info in your pocket!

4 Comments

  1. hi Columbine! No, it's not that far and i considered going to the boats. i haven't been to Batofar still…but I have been to the other one i reviewed (can't remember the name off the top of my head). And, those probably would have been the best idea – but I was really craving a martini & figured I wouldn't get one on the boats. But, I should have done that because i didn't get anything interesting at the novotel.

  2. you're right i don't think they do martinis plus they would not habe been open before the concert.
    i have to say "novotel" does not really inspire me as a location :- )

  3. You're welcome!
    Luckily the concert was better than the drinks at the hotel!
    still at least my glass of wine was well filled!!

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