If mother does indeed know best, then it’s hearty helpings of piping-hot comfort food which visitors crave most in Paris. And so it is the ground-floor restaurant at the Philippe Starck-designed Mama Shelter hotel near the famous Pere Lachaise cemetery has become an unlikely haven of family-style fare. Named one of Travel and Leisure’s 20 Best Design Hotels of 2009, it offers generous portions of duck confit cottage pie and health-boosting veggies aplenty. Nouvelle cuisine this is not. Oh, and if you’re dining solo, help yourself to one of the many novels and comic books scattered around the room. Or tip your head back and scan the blackboard-cum-ceiling above. A rooftop barbecue is offered on some warm nights but be sure to book ahead.
109 rue de Bagnolet, 20e, Paris