Home > Collège Hôtel Review
Updated: August 15, 2020
Collège Hôtel – Step back in time at this quirky yet chic school-themed hotel.
Collège Hôtel manages to combine fantastic service, bags of style, and a relaxed, playful spirit. It aims to take guests back to their school days, and there is a real commitment to the theme throughout. From the ‘canteen’ where breakfast is served on long tables and benches, to the gymnastics vault surrounded by giant pencils and serving as a reception desk, the ground floor instantly communicates a vintage air and a sense of school-based fun. Most striking is the hotel’s white Art Deco façade, which features an installation of chairs by artist Pablo Reinoso and looks like a classroom of children that has just left for the summer. Upstairs, the rooms are bright, white, and airy, inspired by a boarding school. Clever vintage touches (school desk, chair, and welcome pack in a pencil case) are complemented by modern designer elements – breeze-blocks serve as bedside tables, supporting reading lamps by Artemide, and flat-screen TVs are fixed to blackboards. Next door, the Baràgones bar offers cocktail and tapas in a relaxed, Latin-themed atmosphere.
Collège Hôtel – Location
- Address: 5 Place Saint Paul, 5th arr., 69005 Lyon, France.
- Nearest Metro/Subway: Hôtel de Ville–Louis Pradel metro station is 10 minutes’ walk (0.5 mile) away. Vieux Lyon–Cathédrale St Jean is a similar distance to the south (0.4 mile, 9-minute walk).
- Area: The location is pretty hard to beat – on a quiet square on the edge of the Vieux Lyon district (Old Lyon), perfect for exploring those narrow Renaissance streets and taking in the views from the hill of Fourvière above. One block from the River Saône and bridges that will take you to the shopping and sights of central Presqu’île, but also the artist workshops and cool cafes of bohemian Croix Rousse further north. Great food is within easy reach. 9 minutes from the closest metros and the 2 funiculars to the top of the hill.
- How to Get There: From Lyon Saint-Exupéry Airport, take the Rhônexpress tram shuttle; book your ticket online for a small discount. Switch to Métro A at Vaulx-en-Velin la Soie and travel to Hôtel de Ville–Louis Pradel, then walk for 10 minutes (0.5 mile) to the hotel. If arriving by train at Lyon Part-Dieu, take Metro B to Charpennes Charles Hernu, then switch to Metro A; to minimize walking, hop on the C3 bus to the Gare Saint Paul stop, just across from the hotel. From Lyon Perrache station, take Metro A; alternatively, take the 31 bus, which travels along the River Saône, stopping at Saint Paul, 2 minutes (0.1 mile) from the hotel.
- Handy to: Vieux Lyon, River Saône, Opéra de Lyon, Musée des Beaux-Arts.
Collège Hôtel – The Basics
- Ages: Guests are a combination of tourists and professionals. The playful theme attracts a real mix of ages. Families with children are welcome. Bar is 18+.
- View: Graduate and Post Graduate rooms look out either over the river and Croix Rousse or Vieux Lyon and the hill of Fourvière.
- Private Pools/Jacuzzis: No private pools or jacuzzis.
- Laundry: Dry cleaning, laundry, and ironing services are available (additional charge).
- Parking: There are 17 spaces in the on-site garage costing €24 per night (reservation is required).
- Wi-Fi: Free Wi-Fi in all the rooms.
- Extras: Concierge and 24-hour reception desk. Complimentary toiletries from Vinésime in the rooms. Vintage fridges with complimentary water bottles on all floors. The terrace on the 2nd floor is accessible throughout the day. Business corner and relaxing library on the ground floor with free newspapers.
- When to Book: Book 3 months in advance for the summer high season, plus holidays such as Easter and Christmas/New Year.
- How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
- Phone: +334 7210 0505
- Email: [email protected]
- Website: college-hotel.com
Collège Hôtel – Amenities
- Pool: No pool.
- Spa: No spa.
- Fitness Center: No fitness center.
- For Disabled Guests: A few rooms on the ground floor have been thoroughly adapted and feature wet rooms and handrails. There are an elevator and step-free access from the garage to the hotel.
- For Families: All children under 12 stay for free in an extra bed or crib (under-2s). Note that beds/cots cannot be accommodated in Undergraduate rooms. Board games and puzzles are available for all guests.
- Activities: The concierge will be glad to advise on and organize activities for you in the city. These can include walking tours and bar crawls.
- Other Facilities: Pets are allowed, though charges may apply.
Collège Hôtel – Food and Drink
- Restaurant: Breakfast only, though there are numerous restaurants an easy walk away.
- Lounge/Bar: Baràgones has a friendly, relaxed vibe, like the hotel itself, but with a Latin American twist. Expect tapas, a good rum selection, and creative cocktails, as well as live DJs and evenings featuring salsa and samba classes. Open Tuesday-Saturday 5pm-1am.
- Breakfast: The continental breakfast buffet can be included in the room rate, otherwise it’s €17 per person per day. Served in the ‘canteen’ 7-11am Monday-Friday and 7-12 noon weekends, or you can enjoy it on the terrace in the summer. Expect a selection of fresh bread and croissants, yogurts, meat, cheese, freshly squeezed orange juice, and your individual thermos of coffee.
- Room Service: Not available.
Collège Hôtel – Rooms
- Room Types: Undergraduate • Graduate • Post Graduate (all come with double beds as standard but can be twinned)
- Smoking Rooms: Collège Hôtel is 100% smoke-free.
- Best Room: Room 53 is a spacious Post Graduate room with a private balcony and a gorgeous view taking in Vieux Lyon and the Basilique Notre Dame de Fourvière.
- For Families: No family rooms per se.
Collège Hôtel – Local Transport
- Walking: Just around the corner is the River Saône. Cross the bridge to the Presqu’île and you’ll find the Musée des Beaux Arts, the Opéra, and the shopping district, all within a 10-minute walk. Venture into Croix Rousse further north to find the Amphitheatre of the Three Gauls (0.5 mile, 11-minute walk). The heart of the Vieux Lyon district is moments away. Around the corner is the Montée Saint-Barthélémy, which will take you all the way up the hill to sweeping views of the whole city and the Basilique Notre Dame de Fourvière (0.7 mile, 20-minute walk). The nearest metros are a short walk away: Hôtel de Ville–Louis Pradel metro station (0.5 mile, 10 minutes) and Vieux Lyon–Cathédrale St Jean (0.4 mile, 9 minutes).
- Metro and Bus: Lyon has good public transport, including metro, buses, trams, and funiculars. Consider getting the Lyon City Card which covers unlimited trips as well as free/discounted entry to lots of attractions. The metro connects with the airport shuttle, Rhônexpress, at Lyon Part-Dieu and Vaulx-en-Velin la Soie. From Vieux Lyon–Cathédrale St Jean (0.4 mile, 9 minutes from the hotel), 2 funiculars can take you up the hill to Fourvière and St Just, saving you a walk. You can also access the city by bus, including Lyon Part-Dieu (C3 bus from the Gare Saint Paul stop) and Lyon Perrache stations (#31 bus from the La Feuillée stop, 0.2 mile, 4-minute walk).
- Vaporetto: This ferry takes you south from the Saint Paul-Hôtel de Ville stop, on the river just around the corner (0.1 mile, 2-minute walk), to Bellecour or the huge Confluence Shopping and Leisure Centre, which runs the service. Also included in the Lyon City Card.
- Vélo’v: City bikes for hire are big here, and cycling down either river, it’s easy to see why. Pick one up from one of 350 docks, choose a plan that suits you, and drop it off when you want. Just avoid the cobbled inner streets of Vieux Lyon and the steep hills of Fourvière and Croix Rousse (unless you’re feeling very athletic). Special offers apply for Lyon City Card holders. The nearest docks are at St Paul (75m, 1-minute walk) and Place Fousseret (0.1 mile, 2-minute walk).
- Taxis, Uber, Lyft: A taxi from Lyon St-Exupéry Airport to the hotel will take around 45 minutes (24 miles) and cost €50-60. One from Lyon Part-Dieu station will take around 20 minutes (3 miles) and cost around €18-30. An Uber is cheaper for short rides, at €55-70 from the airport and €10-14 from Lyon Part-Dieu.
Collège Hôtel – What’s Nearby?
Recommended Nearby Tours
Best Nearby Restaurants
No chance of going hungry here – Lyon is the gastronomic capital of France, with a unique culinary tradition centered on bouchons – small, friendly bistros serving hearty food. Be adventurous – they serve all parts of the animal here, head to hooves. There’s also an extraordinary concentration of Michelin-starred restaurants. Do check opening hours and be aware that many bars and restaurants are shut on Sundays and Mondays.
- Restaurant Les Loges – The place to go for dramatic fine dining. Enjoy bold yet refined Michelin-starred cuisine by chef Anthony Bonnet – think a starter of black truffle, onion cream, and veal sweetbreads – in the glass-roofed Florentine courtyard at the heart of Cour des Loges. The stunning location is enhanced by candlelight. Reservations required. 4-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- L’Atelier des Augustins – Chef Nicolas Guilloton has cooked at French embassies in London and Mali. Now he’s established himself in this simple, chic space in Lyon, offering an inventive French cuisine that is influenced not only by his travels, but also by local, seasonal produce. The menu is short, high quality, and changes regularly. 5-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- Le Potager des Halles – Creative, seasonal food with some global influences takes the stage here, across from the famous Fresque des Lyonnais. The vibe is cozy and relaxed, with a cute balcony upstairs. 5-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- Le Bouchon des Filles – The women who run this wooden-beamed spot are worthy inheritors of the legacy of Lyon’s famous female chefs, the ‘mères’, and have been recognized by the Michelin guide. Here, Lyonnais classics are served with a lighter touch, and the service is warm and friendly. Try the stew of tender pig’s cheeks and the soufflé topped with green Chartreuse. 6-minute walk (0.3 mile).
- Les Terrasses de Lyon – In the dreamy Villa Florentine hotel sits this Michelin-starred restaurant. Enjoy classical French cooking, a great wine list, elegant surroundings, and gorgeous views of the city from the shaded terrace on the hill. Lunch starts at a decent €39 for 2 courses or €49 for 3 courses. 7-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- Daniel et Denise – Expect fantastic versions of hearty Lyonnais bouchon classics such as tablier sapeur (breaded tripe) and pan-fried calf’s liver, and an award-winning pâté en croûte (duck foie gras and veal sweetbread pie). No wonder the owner Joseph Viola holds the title of Meilleur Ouvrier de France (Chef of the Year 2004). 9-minute walk (0.4 mile) to the Vieux Lyon branch on Rue Tramassac.
- La Meunière – Here, the classic bouchon lyonnaise gets a bit of an update by Olivier Canal and Franck Delhoum, but not too much. The traditional dishes and generous portions are there, and there’s even a machon (lyonnais breakfast) at 9am – a hot dish, cheeses, and ‘un pot’ (460ml) of wine for €25. 10-minute walk (0.5 mile).
- Cinq Mains – Neo-bistro serving beautiful looking modern French cuisine. On a sunny day, opt for the outdoor seating with views of the river. 11-minute walk (0.5 mile).
- Le Musée – Friendly, authentic bouchon, with closely-packed tables and plenty of atmosphere. Wait for the chef to come and discuss the menu with you. This varies frequently but may feature such delights as chicken cooked in vinegar and sausage with pistachios in a homemade brioche. 11-minute walk (0.5 mile).
- Monsieur P – Florent Poulard is one of a new generation of Lyonnais chefs, cooking with a focus on fresh vegetables and original flavors. The service is warm and the set lunch menu is good value (3 courses for €26). 13-minute walk (0.6 mile).
- Le Cochon Qui Boit – A delightful fusion of Japanese and French cooking from chef Akira Nishigaki reigns here, at the ‘bear cub that drinks’. The menu constantly varies, giving you a choice of 2 starters, 2 mains, and 3 desserts daily, and is great value – a 3-course lunch will cost you just €18. Book ahead. 14-minute walk (0.6 mile).
- La Mère Brazier – This restaurant still serves recipes created by Eugénie Brazier, one of Lyon cuisine’s legendary female chefs or ‘mères’. In 1933, she became the first in Lyon to hold 3 Michelin stars. Chef Mathieu Viannay, who now runs the place, has 2 stars of his own, and serves a refined version of bouchon cuisine. 15-minute walk (0.7 mile).
- Toutes les Couleurs – A gift, if you’re looking for quality vegetarian or vegan food in this meat-worshiping city. The menu is built on fresh, organic produce, and changes weekly. 16-minute walk (0.7 mile).
Best Nearby Bars and Breweries
- Les Fleurs du Malt – Vaulted beer cellar bar by the River Saône. The beer selection comes from around the world and the atmosphere is lively, with rock music playing in the back room. 4-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- Soda Bar – Just across the Saône is this permanently cool and popular spot, with a serious cocktail list. You can sip an original Soda creation while being watched over by photos of Sinatra and other music legends. 5-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- L’Antiquaire – This bar features delicious original cocktails, an Art Deco style, and plenty of buzz. 5-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- Le Vin des Vivants – ‘Wine of the Living’ specializes in organic wines and offers a cute bar for customers to enjoy them. 7-minute walk (0.3 mile).
- La Cave d’à Côté – Intimate bar/wine shop in an 18th-century wine cellar, hidden down a tiny alleyway in the Presqu’île. The wine list is big on regional varieties – Côtes-du-Rhônes and Beaujolais – and even a Beaujolais Blanc from the owner’s own vineyard. 9-minute walk (0.4 mile).
- L’Harmonie des Vins – Charming bar in 17th-century stone where you can taste over 300 wines, accompanied by cheeses or a charcuterie platter. 10-minute walk (0.5 mile).
- Café 203 – Trendy bar/restaurant that is always popular. There’s a pretty terrace, while the interior is all dramatic exposed stone and wooden beams. 11-minute walk (0.5 mile) to the Vieux Lyon branch.
- Johnny’s Kitchen – You may be surprised to find an Irish pub in Vieux Lyon, but it works. There are Irish beers and ciders on offer, tasty pub food, and live music every weekend. 13-minute walk (0.6 mile).
- Groom – Cocktail bar upstairs and club downstairs, run by a team that’s passionate about music and creating original, tasty cocktails. The bar is managed by famed local mixologist Florian Dubois. 13-minute walk (0.6 mile).
- Le Terrier du Lapin Blanc – Take a trip down the rabbit hole at this welcoming, bohemian-style bar on the edge of Croix Rousse. Good for coffee during the day and drinks and yummy quick bites at night. Note: You need to order alcohol with your food. 16-minute walk (0.7 mile).
Best Nearby Cafes
- Boulangerie Saint Vincent – There are plenty of artisan bakeries (and chocolatiers and cheese shops) in Lyon, but this tiny organic place on the river still stands out. The cakes are delightful, the bread divine, and there’s a good range of gluten-free items. There’s also usually a line out the door. 4-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- Puzzle Café – Friendly, chic, and modern place in the Presqu’île, serving carefully crafted coffees from beans which they source from the best roasters in Europe. You can even take your coffee knowledge to new heights by signing up for a workshop here. 9-minute walk (0.5 mile).
- La Boîte à Café – Tiny, but oh so good, La Boîte serves specialty coffees, including locally roasted Mokxa coffee, great pastries, and Sunday brunch. 11-minute walk (0.5 mile).
Nearby Shopping & Cool Shops
- René Nardone – A Lyon institution with over 100 years of history. Delightful ice cream and a lovely riverside terrace. 2-minute walk (150m).
- Brochier Soieries – Lyon’s history as a center of the silk trade is still alive here. The Brochier family has been in the trade since 1890, and still proudly weaves and prints arty scarves and ties in France, mainly in Lyon. 5-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- Fripesketchup – A vintage clothes store with the elegance of a designer one. A fun place to browse and grab a stylish find at a decent price. 8-minute walk (0.4 mile).
- Chez Emile Records – Browse a fantastic vinyl selection in this cellar-like shop. Staff are knowledgeable and very happy to help you find what you need. 8-minute walk (0.4 mile).
- Unico Artisan Glacier – Everything is made on the spot (you can watch the glaciers in the kitchen) and includes more-than-tempting ice cream sandwiches and magnums. Unico is committed to working with local producers and only seasonal raw materials, so the menu changes constantly and includes adventurous flavors like mushroom or matcha ice cream. 10-minute walk (0.4 mile).
- Chocolaterie Bel – Philippe Bel is a star of the chocolate world and a winner of the prestigious Meilleur Ouvrier de France (Best Master Chocolatier) in 2004. Here you can buy his amazing creations, which the chocolatiers make themselves from raw cacao of different origins. Great for gifts. 10-minute walk (0.5 mile).
- Le Village des Créateurs pop-up at Grand Hotel-Dieu – Bohemian Croix Rousse is a mecca for artisans and designers, and this arcade of workshops showcases that fact beautifully. The neighboring concept boutique VDC/B sells a selection from the designers, mainly clothing and accessories. VDC supports a young community of 80 designers in the region, so you can add your support by shopping here. 16-minute walk (0.8 mile).
- Vieux Lyon – Exploring the UNESCO-protected medieval and Renaissance old town is a must, whether you book a tour or go by yourself. It’s crowded, but a feast of Italian colors, where you can have fun finding traboules, secret passages mainly constructed by silk weavers to transport their goods. Highlights include the Maison des Avocats (House of Lawyers) on rue de la Bombarde, the Maison Thomassin on Place du Change, and the Tour Rose (pink tower) with its traboule at 16 rue du Bœuf. Starts right outside the hotel.
- Street art – You can find more than 100 elaborate and charming ‘murs peints’ or frescos around the city, mainly designed by the company CitéCréation. There is a cluster around the banks of the Saône which is easy to get to from the old town, including: the ‘Fresque des Lyonnais’ (0.2 mile, 4-minute walk), featuring famous sons from the Roman Emperor Claudius to the Lumière brothers; ‘La bibliothèque de la cité’ (the city library) which turns a townhouse into a giant library with books by Lyonnais writers (0.2 mile, 5-minute walk); and the ‘Fresque de la Cour des Loges’, which depicts the glorious courtyard of the nearby hotel as a stage set (0.1 mile, 2-minute walk).
- Musées Gadagne – Two museums in one 16th-century mansion. Discover the history of the city, including its silk-weaving, printing, and cinematic past. The adjoining collection is of the global art of puppetry, including Lyon’s famous Guignol. 3-minute walk (0.2 mile).
- Musée des Beaux-Arts – Aptly named the ‘little Louvre’, this museum holds the best French collection of art and sculpture outside Paris, spanning from the ancient world to today. Opt for a free audio guide to really enjoy your visit. The building itself is a gorgeous 17th-century abbey. 7-minute walk (0.3 mile).
- Cathédrale Saint-Jean-Baptiste – At the center of Vieux Lyon stands its medieval cathedral, which evolved from 1180 to 1480. Inside the main attraction is a rare 16th-century astronomical clock. Guided tours are on offer every Saturday and Sunday at 2:30pm. Be aware that parts of the interior are under restoration (planned to finish in 2022). Across the Place Saint-Jean is the cathedral’s treasury museum. 7-minute walk (0.4 mile).
- Opéra de Lyon – Lyon’s opera house is a dramatic combination of neoclassical columns and a modern glass-domed roof, added in 1993. A friendly public space, surrounded by cafes, it is home to an award-winning opera and ballet company with reasonably priced shows. In June and July, the Péristyle festival holds free concerts under the arches of the building, accompanied by themed food and a bar. 10-minute walk (0.5 mile).
- Musée de l’Imprimerie – Celebrate Lyon’s history as a printing center at this engaging museum, where you can trace how the trade has evolved from the 15th century to the present. 10-minute walk (0.5 mile).
- Amphithéâtre Romain des Trois Gaules – Under the Roman Empire, Lyon was capital of the provinces called the Three Gauls, and here was where the council of the Gallic tribes met. It was also used for shows, circuses, and famously, for executions of Christians. The site still impresses, through it can only be viewed from outside the gates. 11-minute walk (0.5 mile).
- Lugdunum Musée et Théâtres Romains – Before there was Lyon, there was Roman Lugdunum, founded in 43 BC. Travel back in time at this exceptional museum, built gracefully into the hillside, and discover life in the ancient Roman city. There’s also a kids’ area. Just outside the window are the restored Roman theaters, the oldest in France, and the smaller Odeon. The theater is back in use, hosting the Nuits de Fourvière festival in summer. 18-minute walk (0.6 mile) uphill, or a less taxing 15 minutes taking funicular F2 from Vieux Lyon.
- Basilique Notre Dame de Fourvière – Lyon’s most iconic landmark, shining white on the hill since the 19th century, is equally beautiful inside, with its mosaics in blue and gold. The panoramic view of the city from the terrace is another big draw. There’s even a tour of the rooftops of Fourvière (free with the Lyon City Card) from the basilica’s own roof. 20-minute walk (0.7 mile) uphill, or a less taxing 15 minutes taking funicular F2 from Vieux Lyon.
Nearby Markets or Grocery Stores
- Weekend Markets on the Saône – These include Marché aux Bouquinistes (books market) on Saturdays and Marché de l’Artisanat et des Métiers d’Art (arts and crafts market) on Sundays. From comic books to artwork and clothes, they are a pleasure to browse. 2-minute walk (0.1 mile).
- Les Halles de la Martinière – Lyon’s first indoor market was recently refurbished, and now houses an organic grocery store as well as a buzzing food court which is open till midnight. 6-minute walk (0.3 mile).
- Fromagerie B.O.F de la Martinière – Cheese, glorious cheese, and great service. B.O.F stands for beurres, oeufs, fromages (butter, eggs, and cheese), all of superb quality. There’s also wine to accompany the cheese, and a nice terrace to enjoy everything on in summer. 7-minute walk (0.3 mile).
- Marché alimentaire et fleurs Saint Antoine Célestins – Lyon’s biggest food (and flower) market and a favorite of both locals and chefs, runs by the Saône and invites you to stroll and explore. Do ask the friendly stallholders for advice. Open 6am-1pm daily, apart from Mondays. 8-minute walk (0.4 mile).
- Casino – Small branch of popular supermarket. Decent selection of groceries and essentials. 10-minute walk (0.5 mile).