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Culture / Travel

A Hotel Built for a King Reopens After a Four-Year Renovation

The Most Glamorous Stay in the World?

BY // 09.21.17

For four years, not one name was inscribed in the Hôtel de Crillon guest book. A four-year renovation had shuttered the 18th-century Paris palace while Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, which was appointed to manage the hotel in 2013, planned, deliberated and executed the ambitious, spare-no-expense renovation.

The Crillon, strategically located at 10 Place de la Concorde, reopened to international fanfare in July. It was first fashioned into a hotel in 1909, but has always been operated as a most elite hôtel particulier, filled with heads of state, royalty, and celebrities of the time.

There was much to preserve in the hotel’s delicate refurbishment and restoration — rightfully so with a structure built in 1758 at the request of King Louis XV. The French neoclassical building, originally designed by architect Ange-Jacques Gabriel, is one of Paris’ most recognizable facades, a registered historic landmark with its Corinthian colonnade and Coustou sculptures.

The Crillon is living history, and if the walls could talk, it would be a most glamorous tale. In the Salon Marie-Antoinette, the former French queen once took music lessons; it’s said that her spirit still roams the halls. In the Salon des Aigles, the first French-American treaty recognizing the Declaration of Independence was signed in 1778, and in 1919, the room saw the signing of the Covenant of the League of Nations.

During the four-year renovation, architect Richard Martinet led a swarm of master craftsmen, artisans, and designers in bringing to life a particularly Parisian joie de vivre that balances tradition with modernity. The labor of love extended to the interiors and gardens: Artistic director Aline Asmar d’Amman oversaw the decoration, with three additional Paris-based designers — Tristan Auer, Chahan Minassian, Cyril Vergniol — contributing, and landscape architect Louis Benech conceptualizing the exterior courtyards. Fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld also had design duties, putting his quintessential stamp on Les Grands Appartements — two connecting suites overlooking the Place de la Concorde.

The residential repose of the hotel remains intact, with its 78 rooms, 36 suites, and 10 signature suites uniquely and elegantly appointed with antiques and objets d’art.

Hôtel de Crillon

For leisure time chez Crillon, there is a new swimming pool, fitness studio, and spa. Hair Salon by David Lucas is full-service for women; gents will seek grooming at the Barber by La Barbière de Paris. For a French shoeshine (or to quickly resole your Chanel ballet flats after a day trekking the Avenue des Champs-Élysées), there is Shoescare by Devoirdecourt. For dining, the handsome Michelin starred French chef Christopher Hache leads the kitchen at L’Ecrin — the rarest kind of dining experience, wherein only 22 guests are served per night in the

Salon des Citronniers, an intimate room furnished with 18th-century decoration. There’s also the classic French eatery Brasserie d’Aumont; Jardin d’Hiver, a perfect spot for tea; and the 60-seat bar, Les Ambassadeurs, famous for its champagne carte. In short, there’s ample reason to check in — but nary a reason to say au revoir.

Hôtel de Crillon, A Rosewood Hotel, 10 Place de la Concorde, Paris, rosewoodhotels.com/en/hotel-de-crillon.

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