A genuine Parisian mood at “La Clef Champs-Elysées”- Meanderings through France n° 175
By Annick Dournes & Frédéric de Poligny
The Champs-Elysées district probably is the most glamorous one in Paris, one with “the most beautiful avenue of the world”, as French people say with their usual high self-esteem… Fortunately many foreigners share this view and everybody visiting Paris can’t miss a walk on its huge pavement from the Arc de Triomphe to the Place de la Concorde. To allow visitors to become true insiders of the Champs Elysées the Ascott group recently opened a luxury hotel and serviced residence in an historical Haussmannian-style building. “La Clef Champs Elysées” is tailor-made for families, businessmen and all Paris’ lovers.
“La Clef Champs Elysées” is located on Rue de Bassano and is a mere stone’s throw from the exciting Champs Elysées. It is set in a typical Parisian building built in 1907 for the Hennessy family, owners of the prestigious Cognac house. Its architects won a competition for the finest Paris façade in the same year and since its recent renovation it has regained its former understated elegance. This new hotel not only has “regular” bedrooms, it also proposes 39 suites including a dining area and a kitchen or kitchenette, and on the top floor 2 duplex one-bedroom apartments with stunning views over Paris’ rooftops, the Sacré Cœur or the Eiffel Tower. You can thus enjoy all the facilities of your private apartment in the heart of Paris and all the services offered by a 5-star hotel.
The decoration successfully blends some of the original decorative elements of the early 20th century mansion-house with definitely modern ones. The high stuccoed ceiling and over-decorated arched doors of the lobby contrast with carved black lacquer wood columns, a huge fractal-like form mirror hanging from the ceiling and a black and white Art Deco carpeting. In the beautiful fully preserved neo-Haussmannian marble staircase an amazing designer chandelier cascades from the fifth floor way down to the ground floor. In the rooms and suites as well ancient and modern styles mix, creating the impression that they rather are a home than a mere hotel room.
When you think about it what makes the difference between two luxury hotels isn’t always what strikes you at first sight. No, what matters are small things. And small things have been taking care of at “La Clef Champs Elysées”. For instance when checking in you don’t have to stand at the reception desk, as soon as you arrive you are seated in a comfortable sofa and offered a cup of tea or coffee before being led to your suite. If you don’t feel like going out for dinner you can give your shopping list to the staff and find all the ingredients to cook your meal waiting for you in your kitchen’s fridge. And if you don’t feel like cooking either you can make your choice from catering menus.
More small things? To make your “bathroom experience” special you will not only have the usual complimentary products but you will be able to test an aromatherapy shower. Shower capsules containing different blends of essential oils can be placed in a device connected with the tap of the shower and diffuse divine aromas. You can thus choose a relaxing, energizing or soothing shower. We were staying at “La Clef Champs Elysées on Valentine’s Day and to make our day start well all the guests were offered Champagne at breakfast and ladies got a red rose. The staff definitely knows how to make you feel special.
The hotel doesn’t have a restaurant yet but a buffet breakfast is served in an elegant “Haute Couture” style room with Christian Lacroix materials. Soon an “Imperial Treasure” Fine Chinese restaurant will open as well as a bar. It will be the first French address for the prestigious Singaporean group which has received over 50 international awards, including 2 Michelin stars in Shanghai, 1 in Hong Kong and 1 in Singapore. This restaurant will be the icing on the cake!
More at: www.the-ascott.com/en/france/paris/la-clef-champs-elysees-paris/index.html
Text ©Annick Dournes
Photos ©Frederic de Poligny & Annick Dournes