30 Sep 2008: The city of Paris - the cultural and business hub of Europe
For many centuries Paris has been considered a cultural and business hub of Europe. The city attracts million of visitors every year who come to explore its numberous museums, sights, gardens, architecture and historic monuments. There is hardly a more popular destination in Europe as the capital of France for both leisure and business travelers alike. Paris region has one of the highest GDPs on the continent, making it an engine of the global economy: were it a country, it would rank as the fourteenth largest economy in the world.
This metropolitan city comprises of 20 quarters or arrondissements , arranged in a seasell manner with number one and two in the very center and the last few on the outskirts. In addition the city proper is surrounded by many suburbs, thus increasing almost twice the overall Paris area. All parts of the city are connected by the extensive public transport system comprising of metro, rail, light rail, tram and high-speed subway. Buses also run in the city altough; however they are most popular with tourists due to their low average speed of 9 km/h. This is due to the excessive traffic in the city which is why other, faster forms of transport are commonly used. The Metro is Paris' most important transportation system connecting over 200 km with more than 300 stations in total. Because of the short distance between stations on the Metro network, lines were too slow to be extended further into the suburbs and an additional express network, the RER, has been created to connect more distant parts of the urban area.
The busiest station in Europe can be found in Paris, and this is Gare du Nord , located in the 10th and close to 9th arr. Several lines of the metro and RER connect there, offering convenient layover link for travellers. The Gare du Nord is the area of choice for trade fair attendees visiting the Expo Nord in Villepinte . The Expo Nord is one of the two major exhibition centres together with Porte De Versailles which is located in 15 arr, at the very opposite end of Paris. There is another trade fair centre not too far from the Expo Nord in the area of Le Bourget. Both area located in suburbs north of the City and are accessible by means of one of the 6 RER lines.
Because of the extensive and convenient public transport system business travellers have the option of staying centrally located close to various sights and monuments and within fast reach of the exhibition venues. For example, the trip from Gare du Nord to the city centre takes 15 minutes, or 20 minutes to Expo Nord. The famous Champ Elysees runs for more than 20 km with a countless number of boutiques and upscale shops selling trademark goods.
Paris is very rich in accommodation options , offering over 1,500 chain and privately-owned hotels. Centrally located lodging is traditionally quite expensive, with prices usually starting from 200 EUR per night per room for mid-range hotels. Affordable accommodation can be found close to Gare du Nord , the Eiffel Tower or Montparnasse . Visitors coming for events at the Expo Nord in Villepinte or guests in transit at the Charles de Gaulles airport often choose to stay in Roissy as many hotels offer convenient shuttle service .
Trade Fair Services Team