2018 is already looking to be an exciting year for the Paris hotel scene, with a second stylish new opening in the space of a month. This time we’re excited about Hotel des Grands Boulevards, the second Paris hotel from the Experimental Group, following the opening of SoPi’s 4-star Grand Pigalle Hotel.
As with the Grand Pigalle, the team has again enlisted interior designer Dorothée Meilichzon to create a stylish space in a historic Parisian building. Dating back to the 1790s and the time of the French Revolution, the building is one of only two to be set back from the busy Boulevard Poissonnière with the foundations on the site of an old garden. This provided the team with the idea for their new project – to create a quiet, peaceful place in the hustle and bustle of Paris.
Taking inspiration from the building’s history for the 50 bedrooms, Meilichzon installed canopy beds, sumptuous fabrics, glass cupboards and red marble as a nod to Louis XVI. Touches of modern luxury also add a contemporary edge, with the beds handmade in Brittany and covered in simple, soft cotton sheets. Particular attention has also been paid to the sound proofing to ensure quiet once you have retreated to your room. For those who enjoy bath time, the hotel had the original idea of offering mini beauty products from a variety of luxury names including Codage, Ren, Evolve, and Sachajuan to give guests a chance to try something new. If you find something you like, you can call to reception to receive more of it, with the hotel also planning on working with other luxury brands in the future.
Downstairs guests can find the hotel’s restaurant, headed up by Giovanni Passerini and offering a delicious mix of modern Italian and French dishes. It’s located in a covered courtyard, and the restaurant’s décor also continues the relaxed, garden theme.
Owned by a trio famous for the cocktail bars, the hotel naturally has its own. The Shell takes both its name and décor inspiration from La Chaumière aux coquillages, or Shell Cottage, which was built in 1779 for the Princess of Lamballe. The cottage can still be found in the grounds of the Château de Rambouillet sitting on an island in the middle of the English garden, which provides another link to the garden-inspired Hotel des Grands Boulevards. Although the cottage is traditional from outside, the unique interior is decorated with thousands of shells, streaks of marble and mother-of-pearl, inspiring Meilichzon in her work on the hotel’s bar.
As with other touches throughout the hotel, here the group have also tried something new, dividing the drinks into different alcohol strengths. There is “No Shell” for the abstainers, “One Shell” for lunchtime perhaps, and “Two Shell” if you’re throwing caution to the wind, or lucky enough to have a room for the night.
Hotel des Grands Boulevards, 17 Boulevard Poissonnière, 2nd arrondissement. Tel: +33 (0)1 85 73 33 33. Rates on the website starting from 152 euros/night. Website: www.grandsboulevardshotel.com.