Of the few hotels I've tried with a nice balance between price and quality I'd recommend -
They were both inexpensive compared to many others I've seen and were comfortable and are both right in the centre. I'm sure there's plenty of other SPers out there with other rec's.
Have also saved a lot of money by renting an apartment in Chamonix sud, worked out really cheap over a couple of months. Small place but still more comfortable than a standard hotel room. The savings wouldn't be as big for an 8 day stint and folk tend to be fussy about time slots, not very flexible, in on a Saturday, out on a saturday, but if you can find one that suits it makes life easier than a hotel in my opinion. We found one on the chamonix website dealing directly with the landlord, who was flexible about dates. Also, in our case the landlord, a local who was actually one of the first speedriders, was also a great help and a privilege to have as resource for the duration of our stay.
http://www.chamonix.com/page.php?page=1 ... =1&ling=fr
Chamonix town itself is really small so anywhere is convenient, same with Chamonix Sud (many rental apartments and next to the Aiguille de Midi cable car). Unless you're doing all your climbing at the other end of the valley (argentiere/le Tour) there's no reason to stay anywhere else and everything in the town is a 5/10minute walk away. Safe? It isn't something that's ever crossed my mind as a problem in chamonix, neither is clean come to think of it.