Cigar lounge, bar, and outdoor dining terraces in peaceful garden
10 meeting rooms, some with stunning chandeliers and gold-leaf moldings
Secure on-site parking (fee)
Free Wi-Fi throughout
Some rooms are small (typical for Paris)
Some bathrooms only have small showers
No business center, fitness center, or spa facilities
Fashion-conscious Paris has an equally chic hotel in the upscale La Maison Champs Elysees, with 57 rooms and interiors designed by Belgian designer Martin Margiela. It's aptly located near Avenue Montaigne's designer boutiques, and the metro is a five-minute walk away. Futuristic monochromes meet avant-garde edginess in this striking 8th Arrondissement property, where mostly white decor, Trompe L'Oeil moldings, and minimalist furnishings combine to a lovely effect. Elegant rooms have smart TVs, free Wi-Fi, robes, and minibars, but some are small and have shower-only bathrooms. A bar and French restaurant are high-end, but the hotel lacks wellness facilities. An elevator is available and the garden is a popular spot for al fresco dining. Travelers may prefer Hotel Monge, which has more colorful rooms and a spa, but it's in the 5th Arrondissement.
Just steps from Avenue Montaigne's designer boutiques, Paris' fashion elite get a hotel to match with this 1866-built Haussmann building between the Champs Elysees and Grand Palais. Every brushed-wood surface, chrome finishing, and float-effect bauble lighting has Martin Margiela's designer touch. The hotel's primarily monochrome palette is noticeable throughout, from exquisite sketch-effect moldings and white-draped chairs next to a black piano in the lobby, to a floor-to-ceiling black cigar bar. A Winter Chalet houses chic seating on a terrace with specific color schemes that point to the hotel's partnership with rotating spirits brands, such as Veuve Clicquot and Belvedere. The vibe is undeniably stylish and elegant, largely attracting well-heeled couples wanting to be near the shops and sights of the 8th arrondissement.
In fashionable Champs Elysees, near the river and shopping
The hotel's chic 8th Arrondissement neighborhood is in Paris' center and its calm residential street leads to the Grand Palais (a six-minute walk away). Surrounding streets form a shopping mecca, with everything from Celine to Chanel, and shops along the Champs Elysees itself are just a two-minute walk away. Avenue Montaigne's boutiques are a four-minute walk and equally prestigious Rue de Faubourg Saint-Honore is 10 minutes on foot. Dozens of bars, cafes, and restaurants dot surrounding streets. The manicured Tuileries Gardens are a 15-minute walk, as is the Jacquemart-Andre Museum. The Seine's romantic riverfront is a six-minute walk. The Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe are a 20-minute walk (or shorter metro ride). Franklin. D Roosevelt subway station is a quick four-minute walk, offering transport to La Defense business district. Allow 17-minute metro rides to reach the Louvre Museum. Charles de Gaulle Airport is a 40-minute drive or an hour by public transport, while Orly Airport is a half-hour drive or 50 minutes by public transit.
Of the 57 rooms, 17 were individually designed by Martin Margiela, though all have elegant and chic decor in a mostly black-and-white palette. Rooms start at 22 square meters (237 square feet), which is tight but common for Paris. The Couture-level rooms feature avant-garde touches, trompe l'oeil wallpaper, and honeycomb-esque chairs, rooms bereft of the designer's imprint are more minimalist and lack standout pieces. Regardless of room category, all have quality bedding, Mac minis (iMacs in suites), smart TVs with on-demand movies, minibars, iPod docks, and kettles, plus all but entry-level rooms have seating areas and Nespresso machines. Desks, air-conditioning, free Wi-Fi, and safes come standard, as do pillow chocolates, quality toiletries, and hairdryers.
Bathrooms are sleek, though many have shower/tub combos or small showers. Some, however, have more luxe tubs with separate showers. Fluffy robes, slippers and robes are a given. Some split-level, 55-square-meter (592-square-foot) Suites have classy living areas on texture-effect floors and small furnished balconies. Guests are particularly fond of garden-facing rooms, and those facing the street don't have noise issues.
High-end restaurant with bar and cigar lounge, but no spa
Travelers interested in wellness facilities will be disappointed by La Maison Champs Elysees' lack of a spa and fitness center. However, dining is top-notch. La Table du 8 offers traditional French fare ranging from Dublin Bay shrimp to Croque Monsieur sandwiches, plus afternoon tea. The buffet breakfast is praised for its quality and variety -- think scrambled eggs and sausages, artisan cheeses with breads, pastries and jams, granola and cereal, and fresh fruit. Premium-label wines and Champagne can be ordered at the bar, or in the dark and moody Cigar Lounge. The garden is a lovely al fresco spot for drinks and dining, with the terrace being outfitted in rotating decor that represents a partner spirit brand such as Belvedere. Ten meeting rooms range from underwhelming to stunning, and parking and laundry are both available for a fee. Wi-Fi is free throughout the hotel.
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