Like assembled Avengers, designer Philippe Starck has teamed with entrepreneur Michel Reybier and vegan pioneer and philosopher Cyril Aouizerate to conceive Mob House, an eco-aware Parisian pad in up-and-coming Saint Ouen that is at once utilitarian and very luxe… and we're delighted to report, it works. Every detail has been pored over: artisanal French tiles, sweeps of marble juxtaposed with concrete, rice-straw headboards, parquet floors (natch) and wall paint mixed from straw and clay. Digital nomads will adore the live/work model at play here, with bedrooms concealed by stylish drapes, work areas and fully functional meeting spaces inside the next-gen industrial suites. Outside, the Marché des Puces, one of the world's finest flea markets, offers you the chance to play interior designer yourself for the day.
12pm, but flexible, subject to availability. Earliest check-in, 3pm.
Double rooms from £146.87 (€167), including tax at 10 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional local city tax of €3.00 per person per night on check-out.
Rates include breakfast; load up on all-organic buffet breakfast of fruit salad, pain au chocolat, muesli, freshly squeezed juices, and tea and coffee. All room rates are pre-opening rates, so they may change in 2023.
Mob House is an official partner of the Red Star national football team of Saint Ouen, and of its world-famous neighbour, the Marché aux Puces, the largest flea market in the world.
The hotel swimming pool will be closed for the colder months, from 15 October to 31 March.
At the hotel
Free WiFi, gym with treadmill, elliptical trainer, yoga mats, lifting machine, and weights (private classes available), two rooftop spaces, private garden, welcome snacks of fruit and nuts, plug adaptors, laundry service. In rooms: free WiFi, air conditioning, phone, safe, hair dryer, bathrobe, workspace, selection of books, free bottled water, minibar, le beau thé tea and Malongo organic coffee, glasses, cups and bottle opener, organic Soin de Soi bath products made in Bordeaux, Mob House signature scent of cedar, vanilla and vetiver.
Our favourite rooms
In terms of decor, they’re all a treat for fans of pared-back industrial surrounds, but we were captivated by the MH 43T room. This offers more space with a comfy lounge area and the bedroom neatly tucked away with a mere swish of the stylish drapes. The private terrace is a charming bonus and the ideal spot for a pre-dinner aperitif.
The 20-metre, heated, open-air pool is open from 7am–9pm. It’s surrounded by trees and loungers – a particularly welcome spot during the humid Parisian summer months. Children can use the pool as long as they’re supervised.
A shopping tote with bottomless Mary Poppins capacity for all your flea market swag.
All communal areas are wheelchair accessible, as are five of the standard guest rooms.
You can book a babysitting service in advance (at least 24 hours) for €40 an hour. Baby bottle heaters, cots and changing mats are all available by request with no additional cost, and the restaurant has high chairs.
Sustainability is at the forefront here, with a focus on natural materials and careful consumption. Wooden key cards activate energy-efficient LED room lights, and there’s a water flow restriction system in the taps plus dual-flush toilets. The hotel has a thorough recycling and composting programme, is a plastic bottle free zone, and rooms are cleaned with nature-kind products. French, eco-friendly toiletries come in large, refillable containers. As for the restaurant, you’ll find a seasonal, organic and largely vegetarian range of dishes made from locally sourced ingredients. Along with its neighbouring sister enterprise (Mob Hotel), Mob House has a partnership with a local school, runs a community garden and shared composting facilities for locals, and prioritises residents of the area for employment opportunities.
If the sun’s shining, there’s no better dining spot than a table on the patio.
Glam threads, casual treads.
Star Parisian chef Jérôme Banctel designed the eco-conscious menu for the Feuille de Chou brasserie. There’s room for 150 inside this industrial dining room with a bohemian twist – note the exposed piping overhead and the little busts and trinkets under polished glass cloches. Outside on the bulb-strung patio, there’s seating for 80 more diners to enjoy the flavourful organic French food with healthy intentions. Vegetables are the stars of the show here, with extra love for the once-lowly cabbage, but you’ll find a few chicken, seafood and fish flavours here and there. The Ficelé‘Feuille de chou’, a concoction of seasonal veg roasted, rolled and infused to perfection, is a must.
The glittering gold bar, right next to the restaurant and open from 10am to midnight, is the domain of mixologist Nicolas de Soto. Locals and hotel guests mingle casually here over bar snacks and all-organic cocktails made with infused spirits. Try the Pandaiquiri: coconut-infused rum and lime juice mixed with syrup made from the tropical Pandan plant.
Get your high-end veggie dish orders in by 10.30pm.
Mob House is in the booming Saint Ouen area of Paris, a few streets away from the famous Marché des Puces flea market.
Charles de Gaulle Airport is a 10 to 20-minute drive away, depending on traffic. Hotel transfers start at €70.
Coming from Paris centre, take metro line 14 to Mairie de Saint Ouen and grab a cab or Uber from the station to the hotel.
There’s a private car park with security cameras right under the building. It’s open 24 hours and costs €22 a day.
Worth getting out of bed for
There aren’t many outdoor Parisian pools as nice as the one at Mob House, so be sure to take advantage of the swimming and lounging opportunities. Once you’ve done that, maybe with a coffee or cocktail from the bar, it’ll be time to venture out. You simply can’t stay in Saint Ouen without spending some serious time browsing its famous cluster of markets. If you’ve got a bit of spending power, or are simply an incorrigible aesthete, pay particular attention to Paul Bert Serpette, the largest antiques market in the world, with wares from 350 dealers selling furniture, art, jewellery, vintage luggage and clothing from across the eras. In the autumn, don’t miss the annual night-time market festival giving you access to all the historic Saint Ouen markets after dark, with live musical accompaniment to shop by.
For a market lunch with an upscale feel, check out Starck-designed Ma Cocotte for roast chicken and lentil salad, or just a glass of champagne and a moment to take in the space. For organic Italian fare in a casual-convivial setting, head for the Karlito cantine, located at Mob House’s sibling offering, Mob Hotel. For French plates in a traditional setting (think fois gras, steaks, chocolate fondant), don’t miss the Comptoir des Puces in the Marché Serpette. Alcidia Vulbeau’s Bonne Aventure is another popular stopoff for a well-priced lunch or just a decent verre. The menu’s full of fresh, French, colourful cooking, served in an encouragingly people-packed place.
Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this ultra-slick hotel in Saint Ouen and unpacked their market trouvailles, a full account of their fascinating not-quite-in-the-city break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside Mob House in Paris…
Saint Ouen, long famous for its huge flea market, is now a highly desirable greater Parisian district, and Mob House fits right in. A 100 per cent French playlist sounds across common areas, with tracks democratically selected by staff members. There are more than 5,000 books in the hotel, including in the guest rooms, which offer an all-natural palette of sand-coloured throws and drapes, flashes of cool marble, rustic straw lampshades with trailing cords casually clipped to the side, and bare wood wall panels, with the studs exposed, bien sûr. Larger rooms take a multi-purpose approach: section off a sleeping area or dressing room and turn your endlessly stylish space into something else. From certain vantage points, you can spy the white dome of the Sacré Coeur, a reminder of how close you are to the heart of the historic tourist-trodden streets of the inner city, while discovering something fresh and exciting on the edge.