Condé Nast Traveller Middle East



Think of this quietly decadent hotel on avenue George V as a portal, or possibly even a break in the space-time continuum – one that can spirit you from Paris to Rome in the time it takes to order a croissant. Between the Gio Ponti artwork, plush Maxalto furniture and even the

dozen signature Italian pastries on offer, there’s more than a hint of the bel paese suffused into this high-polish Parisian hideaway. Close to Le Bristol and the Plaza Athénée on the so-called Golden Triangle, it’s the sort of place where patrons in Prada glasses might convene for an aperitivo at the backlit onyx bar to discuss the latest show at the

Palais de Tokyo while nibbling on plump Castelvetr­ano olives and crumbly focaccia rings. Swiss businessme­n swim morning laps in a

semi-Olympic pool glimmering with malachite and gold mosaics. There’s a certain pristine perfection to the place, which was a decade in the making. Italian architectu­ral firm Antonio Citterio Patricia Viel

led the renovation of a Seventies post office, extending the window openings over two floors – a nod to the Renaissanc­e palaces designed by Andrea Palladio – and constructi­ng the façade with the same pale ashlar masonry as Paris’s most recognisab­le monuments, including

the Louvre and the Trocadéro. The food and drink, developed by science-driven chef Niko Romito and former Ritz mixologist Leonardo

Zanini, is precise but unfussy – expect luscious spaghetti e pomodoro preceded by fizzy cocktails. The Bulgari feels like a crisply sumptuous cocoon; a slice of high-fashion Italy that somehow fits just right into one of the world’s great hotel quarters. BETSY BLUMENTHAL

Doubles from about AED 5,180; bulgarihot­

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