the InterContinental Paris it is located in the 9th arrondissement, the heart of the city. It is opposite the Opera Garnier and is a few steps from the flagship stores of the most internationally appreciated department stores in Paris (Galleries Lafayette Haussmann; Printemps Haussmann). Sandwiched between the hotel and the Opera House, Place de L’Opera Metro Station puts you minutes from indelibly ICONIC Paris landmarks (including the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame de Paris and the Arc de Triomphe). It is also home to peace coffeean essential Paris France dining experience in its own right.
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Even among those who have visited Paris before, I found that staying in InterContinental Paris it allows one to be woven into the fabric of the city’s character. Undoubtedly, there was something special about savoring plump, garlicky escargot, sole meunière, and a sublime signature dessert (“Norwegian omelette,” said to be a precursor to Baked Alaska with burnt meringue and rum-raisin ice cream on a sponge cake base) at the Café de la Paix right after checking it out, and stepped out onto the terrace of my first-floor suite at dawn to watch the morning sunlight bounce off the gilt neoclassical structure of the Opera Garnier. It was impossible not to have sweet dreams about the next day’s adventures after watching the amazing people in the glass-roofed lobby and the front desk and concierge staff. The more it changes.
Commissioned by Napoleon III during the Second Empire of France, the InterContinental Paris it was completed in 1862 and opened on May 5 to usher in a new golden age in Paris after decades of political strife and economic vicissitudes. While architect Charles Garnier is credited with designing the hotel, today’s greatest artists, sculptors and furniture designers were invited to put their stamp on every corner of the hotel. InterContinental Paris. The Opera Ballroom, restored to its original glory in 2014, was designed to nearly match the Opera Garnier in opulence. Café de la Paix, for its part, became known as the meeting place in Paris France among elites and others in positions of power.
In anticipation of the 1867 Paris World’s Fair, the hotel introduced innovative amenities such as elevators and a large reception area, and implemented exclusive and personalized guest services. Waking up to a view of the Opera Garnier or another significant Paris monument right outside your window was another exclusivity the hotel offered. The Hotel Le Grand was fit for royalty, and the careful planning was validated with regular visiting royal families, dignitaries and delegations from around the world.
Celebrities and personalities from a variety of fields have fueled the InterContinental Paris’ legend through the decades, and continue to do so today. 19the The actress of the century Sarah Bernhardt is immortalized in a portrait by Georges Jules Victor Clairin hanging next to the main elevators.. In addition to Victor Hugo, the writers Emile Zola and Guy de Maupassant were present there at the 19the Century. Marlene Dietrich and Josephine Baker were mainstays during the 1920s. General Eisenhower and Winston Churchill visited towards the end of World War II, when the hotel functioned as Club #1 for the Allied Expeditionary Forces. Negotiations for the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty, which led to the creation of NATO, took place in the mezzanine meeting spaces in 1948. As I walked through the Opera Ballroom, it occurred to me that my mother, a professional antique doll dealer and collector, she would have loved the fact that it was the place for 40’sthe Barbie doll’s birthday on November 23, 1999.
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According to the man who shows me around InterContinental Paris, the historic registered Opera Ballroom (which today can host gala dinners for up to 450 guests, conferences for up to 600 participants, and cocktail parties for 700) has been a site for political rallies, prestigious couture fashion shows, and theatrical performances. “In 1878, the statesman Léon Gambetta (associated with the creation of the Third Republic) presided over a banquet in the Opera Ballroom. A year later, Víctor Hugo offered a magnificent reception for the revival of his dramatic piece, “Hernani”. The Comédie Française chose the Opera Ballroom to celebrate the 300th anniversary of its creation by Molière in 1982 with a sumptuous dinner attended by the entire company.”)
Although keeping history front and center while keeping updated ambience and comfort in mind is challenging, especially with a hotel of this size, architect/interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon has risen to the occasion. since 1985 with both public and private facilities. spaces. He was lauded for overseeing the restoration of the Opera Ballroom in 2014 and removing the drop ceiling that concealed the glass ceiling that covered the foyer to reveal intricate architectural details and natural light. In recent years, he collaborated with art consultancy La Photofactory (operated by mother-daughter team Nathalie and Lisa Féra) to visually bring public areas to 21st century.
Between 2003 and 2021, Rochon took on the challenge of making the rooms more residential and charming in the style of smaller boutique properties. Four “Presidential” suites on the first floor retain a definitive Second Empire character, with modern luxury subtly worked comforts and function. To provide an additional dimension to the InterContinental Paris’ best deals, orchestrated the design of five “Signature” suites as Parisian apartments, each with its own distinctive color palette and contemporary décor. Though his attention to detail allows elements of Second Empire style to shine through, this is his and management’s gamble to win over discerning travelers who would gravitate towards small hotels with no hidden expense spared in St. Germain de Près, the Rue St Honoré area and other ultra-exclusive residential districts.
FROM ICON TO ICON…
In a city with monuments, museums, and restaurants with true “ICONIC” status everywhere you turn, it’s truly satisfying to stumble upon something that is well-loved by the locals or new places about to become “must-sees” before everyone else. makes
Like Le Grand Hotel, Restaurant Le Drugstore, at the crossroads of the Champs-Élysées and the Arc de Triomphe, has always existed (since 1958, in this case) and yet it never goes out of style. Set against a jewel-toned mid-century modern backdrop, one can spend hours vibrating to the inventive spins of the in-house DJ while sipping on a delectable menu of one-of-a-kind Pan-Asian/French appetizers alongside photogenic cocktails concocted by the lead mixologist Nicholas Usselmann who are as delicious as they are glamorous.
French cooking traditionalists will appreciate the silver spit (focusing on roast chicken, foie gras terrine, and other land products) near the Quartier Latin or Café le Petit Flottesa cute oyster bar just off Rue St. Honoré also serves regularly sold-out croque monsieur sandwiches and an adult-sized “macaroni and cheese” plate made with decadent County cheese. Meanwhile, restaurateur Moïse Sfez is taking his place in a long line of culinary favorites with rave reviews in leading fashion and lifestyle magazines around the world. He’s upending tradition with his recently opened Janet by Homer, a stylish reimagining of New York City delis, and Homer, known for its versions of New England lobster rolls, tuna melt and more.
the dior gallery, The newest museum draws lines and requires reservations, it is pure fashion heaven with its fantastic design, captivating exhibits, and arrangement of original Christian Dior creations as well as those of the current-era designers he has influenced. While Dior emporiums, as well as Chanel and Louis Vuitton, also draw long lines of fashionistas from around the world, savvy Parisians are making their fashion statements through local vintage shops, thrifting, and any boutique. only one that specializes in “sustainable” elegance. While many of the top treasure hunting sites are concentrated in the Marais district and others are scattered and hidden elsewhere, Galleries Lafayette Haussmanhe is one year old “Restore,” Occupying the entire third level of the flagship is a one-stop-shop for vintage, recycled and ethically sourced finds.
Finally, if you are interested in expanding your time and your search for the historical and ICONIC beyond Paris, you may want to consider F “Paris and the heart of Normandy” by Viking Cruise. This itinerary is an attractive road trip alternative (no car rental or hotel reservation necessary) that includes visits to royal palaces and castles that deserve more attention, as well as meaningful tours of major battlefields, cemeteries, and museums. of World War II in Normandy. There’s also a couple of nights in Rouen, with its own cadre of museums, long-established restaurants (including La Couronne, where Julia Child’s passion for French cuisine was ignited), churches, and more.