Top best hotels in Paris

August 20, 2008

paris-panorama

No matter what you like, there exist a Paris hotel that you will adore. There are 4 main categories, so you can choose one according to your taste or mood.
The very first thing that Paris can do best of all is CHIC. So you should not better enter the hotel in a pair of trainers and a backpack. Nobody will tell you anything about the way you look, but the only glance of the receptionist will be enough to dispatch you. All the hotels are really elegant and the employees look beautiful and smart.
There are hotels in a traditional French character  plenty of them. Some of them are really old, some are refreshed and the others are just brand-new. They have  crooked floors, old beams, breakfast rooms in stone-walled cellars, nostalgic decoration. You just have to know which of them are well-run and which have already lived their days.

Chic Hotels

Meurice

Officially Paris only rises to “four-star luxe” rather than five-star accommodation, which is probably what makes its top hotels so sensational: they are all in traditional mode and set in historic mansions, rather than bling new builds.

If only for its location, entered from the arches of the rue de Rivoli and overlooking the Jardin des Tuileries, the Meurice has the edge, for me, over its rivals the Ritz, Plaza-Athénée, Four Seasons Georges V, Bristol and Crillon.

Inside, the revamped interior glitters in gold, marble and glass in a way that’s dramatic yet dainty, with rows of gilt-framed glass doors leading into the shadowy majesty of the Bar Fontainbleu, and the Versailles-themed, Michelin-starred restaurant.

Rooms and suites hark back to the empire and 18th century and many have superb views, while the terrace of the Belle Étoile Suite has an amazing 360-degree panorama over Paris. Spoiling spa; appropriate service.

Lancaster

A recent stay at this aristocratic Champs-Élysées hotel shows that its new owner, the Spanish Hospes group, headed by the high-society owners of Zara, has left well alone, only improving amenities such as beds and in-room entertainment.

The ancien régime townhouse was bought in 1930 by the hotelier Emile Wolf, who filled it with unusual things and a starry array of guests from Coward to Dietrich.

The original furniture remains intact, as do the enchanting Salon Berri and the red leather lift that takes you to your bedroom. The assured Michel Troisgros oversees the menu in the restaurant.

Best of the rest

Verneuil

Chic usually means expensive, and it certainly doesn’t mean cheap, but this Saint-Germain address is at least affordable and provides a bolthole that feels both exclusive and welcoming.

Bedrooms (specify a large one) are furnished with antiques. There’s a cosy sitting room, and, once you step outside, a wealth of antique and fashion shops. The owner, Sylvie de Lattre, Parisienne to her fingertips, picks out her favourite local shops and cafés on the hotel’s website.

Thérèse

A smart, whitewashed building in a narrow street near the Louvre announces the Thérèse, carefully designed in classic/contemporary style, with an eye for quality. The elegant bedrooms have good-quality beds and linens, while bathrooms mix traditional with contemporary such as Philippe Starck lighting and old-style tap fittings. Most importantly, the hotel attracts an interesting clientèle, many from publishing and fashion.

Hip hotels

The best

de Sers

Hotel de sers

Hotel de sers

Less than 100 yards from the George V hotel, here is a smaller mansion-turned-hotel with a dash of zaniness. When the architect Thomas Vidalenc remodelled the 19th-century home of the Marquis de Sers, he made a happy marriage between traditional elegance and cutting-edge design.

The entrance hall sets the tone: a gallery of heavy, gilt-framed portraits hangs on the panelled wall above a row of grey armchairs on deep purple carpet. The wood-clad, candlelit S’Bar becomes a magnet for a glamorous young crowd at cocktail hour, while the bedrooms offer deep-pile, wrap-around comfort.

Best of the rest

Costes

It’s best to be someone at Costes but if your face fits and you want a high-octane, highly public romantic interlude in Paris, then Costes is for you: an opulent faux Napoleon III cocoon which top decorator Jacques Garcia created in his plushest, most lavish haute-bordello style.

There are plenty of intimate, shadowy corners and in the pool room you can draw the curtains around your double day bed for complete privacy. At night, chill music is provided by cool in-house DJ, Stéphane Pompougnac. Rooms are small but richly decorated, with wonderful bathrooms, many with deep Victorian clawfoot baths.

Amour

Brainchild of the graffiti artist and nightclub entrepreneur known as André, the Amour has come storming on to the Paris hotel scene. It has the right name, is in the right place – up-and-coming SoPi (south Pigalle) – and is extremely hip.

Bedrooms lead off black-painted corridors lit by naked bulbs. Some have been decorated by named artists; others display risqué photographs; all are eclectic, done in vintage colours and display interesting finds from the flea market.

The buzzing bistro downstairs, all black, white and fire-engine red, swarms at night with young bohos. In warm weather, tables and chairs spill out into the lush courtyard garden.

Murano Urban Resort

Murano Urban Resort

Murano Urban Resort

If Costes is hip in an opulent way, then Murano Urban Resort is hip in a fun way. You may find the lift lined in faux fur on your first visit, glitter on your second, the white Chesterfield stretches in front of an enormous working fireplace, the restaurant ceiling is a sea of and fingerprint scanners have replaced room keys.

The corridors feel like nightclubs and two of the suites have tiny rooftop pools. Fun. And not nearly as intimidating as you might think.

Hotels with character

Daniel

Hotel Daniel

Hotel Daniel

Turning its back on all-white minimalism, this newcomer puts Chinoiserie back on the style map, with Khotan carpets, hand-painted Chinese wallpaper, jewel-coloured silk sofas and porcelain lamps.

The look, created by the designer Tarfa Salam, is flamboyant. From the lobby, in tones of almond green and grey, a lift resembling a Chinese box whisks guests up to the bedrooms, most lined with toile de Jouy and all furnished with oriental pieces. The Asian influence extends to the restaurant.

The best of the rest

Caron de Beaumarchais

Hotel Caron de Beaumarchais

Hotel Caron de Beaumarchais

A glimpse through the glass front of this Marais hotel tells all: a recreation of 18th-century taste, complete with pianoforte, card table and first editions, and the world of Mozart’s librettist Caron de Beaumarchais, who lived on the same street.

It may be mannered, but it’s impossible not to be caught up in the charm and warmth. Bedrooms, the best with walk-out balconies, are decorated with as much care as the public rooms. Good value for the area.

L’Hôtel

L’Hôtel

L’Hôtel

The pavillion d’amour of the early 19th century, the final home of Oscar Wilde in the early 20th and the louche and decadent celebrity hangout of the Sixties and Seventies is now, resplendent in its Jacques Garcia livery, in the caring hands of Jessica Sainsbury and her husband Peter de Frankopan (owners of the Cowley Manor hotel in the UK). Climb the circular staircase to rooms like jewel boxes and themed suites.

Budget hotels

Arvor Saint-Georges

Hotel Arvor Saint-Georges

Hotel Arvor Saint-Georges

Around the corner from place Saint Georges (one of the city’s hidden gems), the Arvor is the new kid on the budget block. Behind a sober façade, the hands-on owner Nadine Flammarion has transformed a standard three-star into a hip, laid-back hotel with retro-contemporary looks.

The finished bedrooms – some are still being refurbished – are mainly white but with a single wall of vivid colour, and are minimally yet carefully furnished. The open-plan ground floor incorporates a sitting area, a bar, reception and breakfast area decorated with the striped posters of the French conceptual artist Daniel Buren.

The best of the rest

Chopin

Chopin Hotel

Chopin Hotel

The Chopin’s entrance looks cosy and inviting glimpsed from one of the 19th-century arcades that thread this shopping and theatre neighbourhood. Inside, plants, a piano and, predictably, Chopin in the background, infuse it with old-world charm.

Staff are caring and attentive, and prices close to rock bottom by Parisian standards. The bedrooms are simple, attractive and blissfully quiet. The best, tucked under the eaves, have classic views across the rooftops.

Mayet

Hotel Mayet

Hotel Mayet

Fun, relaxed, breezy and good value, the Mayet shows how colour – judiciously applied – can lift a hotel out of the rut. It’s everywhere: graffiti-style murals; painted tables; carpets; even the mugs for your self-service breakfast (which you can take back to bed or eat at a long table d’hôte).

The more sober bedrooms in red, grey and white use stylish “office” furniture to good effect, and all have excellent beds.
3 rue Mayet, 6th; www.mayet.com;

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One Response to “Top best hotels in Paris”

  1. Christie Says:

    I’ve never been 2 Paris but heard of it million times. I think it’s the best place 4 the honeymoon in the world. So romantic, as they say:) Lookin’ 4ward to getting married and prove it with my husband-to-be:)


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