The idea that people have affairs in hotels shouldn’t come as a shock. That said, not many hotels honor the pastime with such winking panache as Le Meurice in Paris. But there she is, France’s most beloved royal mistress, Madame de Pompadour, her large portrait evoking coquettish consent while you wait for the elevators. With her own fabulous banquet salon and an elegantly appointed suite, King Louis XV’s famously accomplished partner (an important patron of the arts, not to mention de facto ruler of France) is the hotel’s unofficial patron saint.
And speaking of fit for a king, we had the honor of luxuriating in the just re-opened, totally re-imagined “Belle Etoile” penthouse suite. This sprawling, four-bedroom, obsessively appointed, massively terraced penthouse is the stuff of revolutions. Easily one of the most magnificent views of Paris imaginable (perched over the Tuileries, there isn’t a landmark you can’t see), one can imagine Pompadour herself requesting an upgrade from her namesake suite. Put it on Louis’ black card, merci.
Below, Dorchester Collection’s France Communications Director Isabelle Maurin gives us an inside look at this Parisian gem.
What is the most requested room?
The rooms and suites of the 6th floor with views over the Tuileries Garden are the most requested rooms. They completely embody Parisian style thanks to their special decoration, and their wallpaper from De Gournay, which makes the suites feel like your own private extension of the garden.
What makes it so special and unique?
For a distinctive standout feature, our designers teamed up with bespoke wallpaper experts De Gournay, to create artfully hand illustrated wallpaper in a sumptuous chinoiserie style. They are the only rooms that have a small balcony, which enables you to savor a glass of champagne with a view, giving you the incredible feeling that you’re looking at a picture-postcard of Paris! At any moment of the day, Paris is unveiled in a new light, and this is beautifully romantic.
What is the nightly rate?
The rate starts at € 1350 per night.
What room is your personal favorite?
My favorite is room #605, it is an Executive room with park view and a balcony, and its 42m²/452ft². It is exactly what you need for a weekend in Paris! All day long, the clear view over Paris enables you to discover an unexpected and new aspect of the city; in particular, the lighting changes on the emblematic monuments of Paris are unforgettable. The bathroom has windows overlooking the Tuileries Garden, with views of the trees, which gives you the impression of being in the countryside.
Has the hotel hosted any celebrity or notable guests?
Over the years, Le Meurice has welcomed all kinds of notable guests, including some of the most famous from Salvador Dali to Jay-Z.
What are some interesting tidbits about the hotel that make it an iconic property?
Le Meurice is the very first Parisian hotel to be given a “palace” rating – meaning that it is rated higher than a five-star hotel, so it may be legitimately thought of as a legend. Thanks to its amazing location, which faces the Tuileries Garden, Le Meurice is at the heart of Paris and all of its historic monuments including the Louvre and Eiffel Tower.
Le Meurice’s legacy as a historic palace that blends 18th century opulence with contemporary French style, continues to present day, with the recent remodel of 29 rooms and suites. Including, most notably, the Belle Etoile Penthouse suite – The expansive private terrace offers 360° city views of Paris, overlooking the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame and Sacré Coeur. The suite has a sitting room, dining room, walk-in closet, a bedroom and a spacious marble bathroom. There is also a kitchen and pantry for a personal chef and if guests require additional space, the suite may be connected with additional rooms, adding up to four bedrooms. Nothing compares to the luxury of Le Meurice’s Belle Etoile Suite, unrivalled by other Paris five-star luxury hotels.
Give us one fun fact about the property.
Over a 30-year period, artist Salvador Dali used to stay for one month per year in the suite formerly occupied by King of Spain, Alphonse the 13th. Dali was especially eccentric in his requests: after having splashed the walls of his suite with paint drops during his “explosion painting” phase, he asked to the staff to throw twenty cent coins under the wheels of his car upon his departure, so he could say he was rolling in money!