PARIS JE T’AIME

Business Traveller (Middle East) - - Mice - WORDS PAUL J DEVRIES

The City of Light of­fers a range of ho­tels few other destinations can match. We round up the lat­est de­vel­op­ments

Over the past decade, the Parisian lux­ury ho­tel seg­ment has gone through a rad­i­cal trans­for­ma­tion. A num­ber of tra­di­tional palace ho­tels – names like the Ritz Paris, Hô­tel de Cril­lon and Le Royal Mon­ceau, long part of the city’s fab­ric – closed their doors for ren­o­va­tion projects. Other brands made their de­but, in­clud­ing three of the ma­jor high-end Asian ho­tel groups: Man­darin Ori­en­tal on Rue St Honoré, Shangri-La on Av­enue d’Iéna and The Penin­sula on Av­enue Kléber. A nightly bud­get of four fig­ures can soon be­come a re­al­ity if it’s lux­ury you seek.

For­tu­nately, sev­eral new op­tions com­bine style and af­ford­abil­ity. The Hox­ton cut the rib­bon on its sec­ond ho­tel out­side Lon­don in Paris, in a 16th-cen­tury build­ing in the 2nd ar­rondisse­ment. Just around the cor­ner, the Ex­per­i­men­tal Group added Hô­tel des Grands Boule­vards to its grow­ing port­fo­lio, while a few min­utes in the other di­rec­tion it looks af­ter the restau­rant and bar of the re­newed Hô­tel Bachau­mont. Mi­cro “bud­get-chic” ho­tels aren’t quite as preva­lent as in a city like New York, but Dutch group Cit­i­zen M opened in the La Défense busi­ness dis­trict and at Gare du Lyon, and is work­ing on more.

Be­yond what we are able to cover over the next few pages, there are projects of ev­ery size and scale in var­i­ous stages of de­vel­op­ment. Ital­ian bou­tique ho­tel group JK Place, cur­rently of­fer­ing Rome, Florence and Capri, will add a 30-room ho­tel steps away from the Musée d’Or­say next year. Hô­tel Costes, while work­ing on its out­post on Lon­don’s Sloane Square, may ex­pand into the build­ing next door, which pre­vi­ously housed Ho­tel Lotti. An am­bi­tious project by Ja­panese ar­chi­tect Kengo Kuma be­tween the Bi­b­lio­thèque na­tionale de France and Halle Freyssinet, on the Left Bank, could be the start of a Euro­pean pres­ence for eco-lux­ury 1 Ho­tels. In an un­usual de­vel­op­ment for Paris, there are a num­ber of sky­scraper pro­pos­als – such as Tour Tri­an­gle and Tours Duo – each of which come with ho­tel el­e­ments.

HO­TEL LUTE­TIA

The last of the grand ho­tels to come out of a multi-year ren­o­va­tion, Ho­tel Lute­tia re­opened mid-July. Nat­u­ral light streams from large win­dows into the com­pletely re­con­fig­ured ground floor, fea­tur­ing a neu­tral pal­ette, with orig­i­nal el­e­ments re­stored or recre­ated – the ceil­ing fresco in Bar Joséphine was found un­der lay­ers of paint and took 17,000 hours to re­store. A new out­door pa­tio con­nects restau­rant Le Saint Ger­main with L’Orangerie, where break­fast and week­end brunch are served. Mul­ti­ple storeys were ex­ca­vated un­der­neath the ho­tel to make room for an Akasha Holis­tic Well­be­ing Cen­tre, with treat­ment rooms and a 17-me­tre pool.

Up­stairs, there are 184 rooms and suites with clean lines and, sim­i­lar to sis­ter ho­tel Café Royal in Lon­don, strik­ing light-mar­bled bath­rooms. Court­yard-fac­ing rooms con­trast dark wooden floors with whites and pale greys, while those look­ing out over Boule­vard Ra­s­pail add a rich blue on some of the walls and in the fur­ni­ture. Lute­tia Brasserie, over­seen by chef Gérald Passé­dat, will open to­wards the end of the year, as will seven sig­na­ture suites. 45 Boule­vard Ra­s­pail; +33 (0)1 4954 4600; hotel­lute­tia.com

HO­TEL MONTE CRISTO

Con­tin­u­ing on the Left Bank, Ho­tel Monte Cristo, the sec­ond of Les Hôte­liers Im­per­ti­nents Group, also opened in July in the 5th ar­rondisse­ment. Its 50 rooms and suites are in­spired by “the 19th cen­tury and French ge­nius”, rep­re­sented by au­thor Alexan­dre Du­mas. They come in an eclec­tic mix of colours, with fringed vel­vet fur­ni­ture, bed­side lamps, and hang­ing lanterns. There is a 16-me­tre swim­ming pool and sauna in the base­ment, while a smok­ing room and bar are due to open in Novem­ber. The group is look­ing at fur­ther ho­tel projects in the French cap­i­tal. 20-22 Rue Pas­cal; +33 (0)1 4009 0909; hotel­monte­cristoparis.com

FAU­CHON L’Hô­TEL

Of­fi­cially open since Septem­ber 1, the first ho­tel from lux­ury gro­cer Fau­chon can be found just off of Place de la Madeleine in the 8th ar­rondisse­ment. Four core colours set the tone for its in­te­rior de­sign: white, black, gold and Fau­chon pink.

The 54 rooms and suites all have ex­te­rior views and come with dark hard­wood floors and a pink, Fau­chon Gourmet Bar with com­ple­men­tary treats. Some have views of the Eif­fel Tower, while the Pres­tige Suite has a liv­ing room over­look­ing the Madeleine Church. Down­stairs, Le Café Fau­chon serves food and drinks through­out the day and evening, and has in­door and out­door seat­ing. There is also a li­brary and a small spa. 4 Boule­vard Malesherbes; +33 (0)1 8786 2800; ho­tel-fau­chon-paris.fr

BRACH PARIS

Evok Hô­tels Col­lec­tion opened Brach Paris in Oc­to­ber, in the 16th ar­rondisse­ment near the Bois de Boulogne. Be­hind its glass façade with trees and hang­ing fo­liage are 59 rooms and suites de­signed by Philippe Starck, while a “sports club in­spired by 1930s box­ing clubs” of­fers a 22-me­tre pool, sauna, steam room, Hi­malayan salt cave and fit­ness fa­cil­i­ties. Brach Paris fol­lows the open­ing by Evok of Nolin­ski Paris in 2016, and the group plans to add Cour des Vos­ges next year, with just 12 apart­ments on Place des Vos­ges, one of the city’s most beau­ti­ful squares.

Brach Paris, 1-7 Rue Jean Richepin; +33 (0)1 4430 1000; brach­paris.com

Cour des Vos­ges, Place des Vos­ges; evokho­tels.com /prop­erty/cour-des-vos­ges

MAI­SON ASTOR PARIS

Hil­ton cut the rib­bon on Mai­son Astor this au­tumn, part of its Cu­rio Col­lec­tion and orig­i­nally built by John Ja­cob Astor IV. Com­pletely re­fur­bished, it of­fers 131 rooms and suites, some with out­door ter­race, and a rooftop suite de­signed with fab­rics from Her­mès. The Din­ing

The ceil­ing fresco in Bar Joséphine at Ho­tel Lute­tia took 17,000 hours to re­store

Room serves French-Amer­i­can in­spired food un­der­neath the glass ceil­ing of the ho­tel’s court­yard.

Its open­ing comes on the heels of Niepce Paris ear­lier this year, also a Cu­rio Col­lec­tion ho­tel. Tak­ing its name from Ja­nine Niépce, a cel­e­brated French pho­tog­ra­pher and jour­nal­ist, it has 52 rooms and suites in a row of town­houses near Mont­par­nasse, along with restau­rant La Ver­rière. Hil­ton is also de­vel­op­ing a 118-room ho­tel roughly mid­way be­tween Niepce and the Eif­fel Tower, with in­te­ri­ors de­signed by Philippe Starck, due some­time next year.

Mai­son Astor Paris, 11 Rue d’As­torg; +33 (0)6 4383 6448; maisonas­tor­paris.com

Niepce Paris, 4 Rue Niepce; +33 (0)1 8375 6920; niep­ceparis.com

Hil­ton Paris Eif­fel Tower, 55 Av­enue de Saxe; hil­ton.com

Hô­TEL DU LOU­VRE

On Rue de Rivoli, Hô­tel du Lou­vre will re­open in 2019 as part of Hy­att’s Un­bound Col­lec­tion, with 165 rooms and suites, a new lobby, bar and restau­rant. The year af­ter, a dual-branded Hy­att Place and Hy­att House prop­erty is to open at Roissy- Charles de Gaulle air­port, with a to­tal of 430 rooms. Mean­while, Hy­att Re­gency Étoile has un­der­gone a com­plete ren­o­va­tion, with a new lobby, Re­gency Club lounge, and a fresh look for its 995 rooms and suites, and 34th floor panoramic bar. Hô­tel du Lou­vre, Place An­dré Mal­raux; +33 (0)1 7311 1234; parishotel­du­lou­vre.hy­att.com Hy­att Re­gency Étoile, 3 Place du Général Koenig; +33 (0)1 4068 1234; parise­toile.re­gency.hy­att.com Hy­att Place/Hy­att House Rois­syCharles de Gaulle air­port; hy­att.com

Hô­TEL SCRIBE PARIS OPéRA

Dat­ing back to 1861, Hô­tel Scribe – part of Sof­i­tel – is in the mid­dle of a ren­o­va­tion pro­gramme due to com­plete in au­tumn 2019. It re­mains open through­out the works, and the first set of fresh rooms and suites can al­ready be booked. The work of Tris­tan Auer, the rooms come with

in­tri­cate fab­ric head­boards, ab­stract art and bath­room ceil­ings in­spired by Cha­gall’s fres­coes at Opéra Garnier.

There is plenty of other ac­tiv­ity from Ac­cor Ho­tels around Paris. A 236-room 25 Hours ho­tel is due to open this year in­side the Ter­mi­nus Nord build­ing, op­po­site Gare du Nord. Pull­man Paris Mont­par­nasse is closed un­til the end of sum­mer 2019 for a ren­o­va­tion, while two ho­tels un­der the Mama Shel­ter brand should open by 2020 near Porte de Ver­sailles and in La Défense. An­other po­ten­tial project is a So Sof­i­tel on Champs-Elysées, with rooftop pool – yet to be con­firmed.

Hô­tel Scribe Paris Opéra by Sof­i­tel, 1 Rue Scribe; +33 (0)1 4471 2424; ho­tel-scribe.com/en

25 Hours Ho­tel Ter­mi­nus Nord, 12 Boule­vard de De­nain; +33 (0)1 4280 2000; 25hours-ho­tels.com/en

Pull­man Paris Mont­par­nasse, 19 Rue Com­man­dant René; +33 (0)1 4436 4444; pull­man­ho­tels.com

CIT­I­ZEN M

Hav­ing started with a ho­tel at Roissy- Charles de Gaulle air­port, Cit­i­zen M opened prop­er­ties in La Défense and next to Gare de Lyon, its first-ever con­ver­sion. Be­tween these three ho­tels, the Dutch ho­tel brand has more than 700 rooms around Paris, but there are two more ho­tels in the pipe­line: in the Opéra dis­trict, with 80 rooms, and at an as-yetundis­closed cen­tral lo­ca­tion, with 151 rooms. Cit­i­zen M La Défense, 194 Jardin de l’Arche; +33 (0)1 8665 5960; cit­i­zenm.com Cit­i­zen M Gare de Lyon, 8 Rue Van Gogh; +33 (0)1 8665 0740; cit­i­zenm.com

BUL­GARI HO­TEL PARIS

At the start of the next decade, Bul­gari Ho­tels will open a ho­tel on Av­enue George V, tak­ing the group’s port­fo­lio to eight prop­er­ties world­wide. The ma­jor­ity of its 76 rooms will be suites, and fa­cil­i­ties in­clude a restau­rant and bar with court­yard gar­den, and a spa with 25-me­tre pool.

Cit­i­zen M has over 700 rooms around Paris with two more ho­tels in the pipe­line

Four Sea­sons opened its new 720 sqm spa this sum­mer, with a 17-me­tre pool

Bul­gari will be across the street from Four Sea­sons Ho­tel George V and its neigh­bour Prince de Galles, and only min­utes from Hô­tel Bar­rière le Fouquet’s, on the cor­ner with the Champs-Elysées. Four Sea­sons opened its new 720 sqm spa this sum­mer, with 17-me­tre pool, fit­ness, treat­ment rooms and sa­lon, while Bar­rière le Fouquet’s will add 19 new rooms and suites by the end of this year.

Bul­gari Ho­tel Paris, 30 Av­enue George V; bul­gar­i­ho­tels.com

Four Sea­sons Ho­tel George V, 31 Av­enue George V; +33 (0)1 4952 7000; foursea­sons.com/paris

Ho­tel Bar­rière le Fouquet’s, 46 Av­enue George V; +33 (0)1 4069 6000; ho­tels­bar­riere.com/en/paris/ le-fou­quets.html

CHEVAL BLANC SAMARITAINE

Closed since 2005, depart­ment store La Samaritaine is be­ing brought back to life by LVMH. As part of its mixed-use fu­ture, it will con­tain Cheval Blanc Samaritaine, Cheval Blanc’s fourth ho­tel, in the Art Deco por­tion of the build­ing de­signed by Henri Sau­vage. Fac­ing the Seine at Pont Neuf, the bridge con­nect­ing the western tip of Île de la Cité, it will have 72 rooms and suites, a num­ber of restau­rants, and a gar­den ter­race above the build­ing’s glass rooftop. Quai du Lou­vre; cheval­blanc.com

KIMP­TON PARIS

Hav­ing been ac­quired by IHG, Kimp­ton Ho­tels has ex­pan­sion plans in Europe and Asia. That in­cludes a prop­erty in Paris, with 122 rooms and 27 suites, a restau­rant with pa­tio, spa and fit­ness, event space and rooftop. Kimp­ton Paris should open in 2020 on Boule­vard des Ca­pucines, a short stroll from Opéra Garnier and around the cor­ner from In­terCon­ti­nen­tal le Grand, which is un­der­go­ing a re­fur­bish­ment over­seen by Pierre-Yves Ro­chon, dur­ing which it re­mains open.

Kimp­ton Paris, 25-29 Boule­vard des Ca­pucines; kimp­ton­ho­tels.com

In­terCon­ti­nen­tal le Grand, 2 Rue Scribe; +33 (0)1 4007 3232; parisle­grand.in­tercon­ti­nen­tal.com

RIGHT: Pink is a theme at Fau­chon l’Hô­telBE­LOW: Ho­tel Monte Cristo has rooms in­spired by Alexan­dre Du­mas

FROM TOP: The bar and façade of Ho­tel Lute­tia; plants and fo­liage adorn the Brach Paris

FROM TOP: The glass ceil­ing of the court­yard at Mai­son Astor Paris; and one of the rooms; Hô­tel du Lou­vre is due to re­open in 2019

FROM TOP: Some of the ren­o­vated rooms at Hô­tel Scribe Paris Opéra can now be booked; shared space and guest rooms at Cit­i­zen M La Défense have a con­tem­po­rary style

FROM TOP: The ma­jor­ity of rooms at Bul­gari Ho­tel Paris will be suites; the spa at Four Sea­sons Ho­tel George V; Kimp­ton Paris will have 122 rooms

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