Travel

By Alexandra Taylor

Paris, a city revered for its museums, cuisine, fashion scene, and that je ne sais quoi that keeps tourists returning year after year, is a must-visit during the warm months. With beautiful gardens in full bloom and a picture-perfect backdrop along the Seine River, Paris is undoubtedly a favorite for romantics, fashionistas, art historians, and globetrotters alike.

In the heart of Paris, near the Champs-Elysées, lies the boutique hotel Les Jardins de la Villa. Behind a discreet period faà§ade the newly opened design hotel is adorned with modern elegance and a combined theme of Parisian “couture” and the natural beauty of Paris. With playful references to the arts and nature seen throughout the hotel, the true splendor is found in the luxurious details. As you enter the reception, a surrealist couch in the form of a giant shoe centered in an all paneled glass room, draws focus to couture references and fashion icons such as designer Elsa Schiaparelli and the epitome of Parisian couture, Coco Chanel. Fashion illustrations by illustrator Hippolyte Romain create a story of Parisian street scenes throughout the faà§ade windows.

The interior décor continues to play on the intimate relationship between art, nature, and fashion. As nature is a source of inspiration for many designers, the connection is truly relevant and makes for an elegant interior. The winter garden library and dinning room are filled with chrome ivy leaves along the walls and artistic references to the four seasons. If you are lucky enough to visit during the spring or summer, you can enjoy your breakfast or afternoon tea under the warmth of the sun, as the roof of the winter garden opens. The back patio situated in the courtyard of the hotel is intimate and makes for a nice evening retreat after a long day of sightseeing.

The 33 rooms and suites depict the essence of style, with various colorways from fuchsia to cognac to the always-fashionable black and white. With balconies overlooking the lush patio setting, the boudoirs are luxurious in amenities and evoke the essence of Parisian style. The friendly welcome and intimate accommodations makes this gem of a hotel stand out above the sea of Parisian establishments. As a member of the SLH (Small Luxury Hotels of the World) Les Jardins de la Villa keeps up to the standards of the select group of hotels and does so with superior accommodations and luxuriant modern touches.

Website: http://www.jardinsdelavilla.com

During your stay take a trip down the Champs-Elysées for some decadent shopping and perusing of the design houses and storefronts of the French fashion greats, such as Christian Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, and of course, Chanel. Stop along one of the many pà¢tisseries offering unmatched treats from croissants and pain au chocolat to the array of flavored and oh-so-colorful macarons. Stroll on towards the Jardin des Tuileries for a relaxing and memorable spring day. With plenty of greenery to lounge upon, the gardens and the surrounding exterior of the Louvre are a great setting for a picnic or even an afternoon nap.

Crossing over the Seine and onto the ever-so-chic Sain Germain des Prés, you will find another new luxury design hotel, Hotel La Belle Juliette. The refined design hotel exudes the essence of Parisian luxury in an intimate setting. The cool, discreet, and relaxing atmosphere is reminiscent of the social salons of the 18th century. This intimate sensibility is fitting for the theme behind the hotel décor, as it pays homage to Juliette Récamier, a French socialite of the 18th and early 19th century known for her beauty and intellect. The interior design of the boutique hotel follows stages of Juliette’s life, with each floor furnished to represent a specific period and style. For a drink or meal the hotel restaurant and bar Le Talma offers an Italian-themed menu at lunch, tea and sweets in the late afternoon, and in the evening a selection of wines and tapas. Similar to the salons of Juliette, Le Talma offers a quaint yet posh space with plush armchairs and sofas with colorful accents.


After a long day of walking the streets of Paris, you can unwind at Le Spa De La Belle Juliette for a rejuvenating beauty treatment using organic products. Or make use of the Turkish bath or swimming pool. The rooms and suites equipped with modern amenities including iMac screens are precisely detailed in décor with beautiful wall adornments and furnishings, creating a beyond comfortable living environment. Each room illustrates a part of Juliette’s life. The first floor is devoted to Juliette and her close friend, with pink and red accents. The second floor is stylized in the period of Juliette’s visit to Italy with blue tones seen throughout. The last floors are decorated in the fashion of the salons of the 18th and 19th century. The combination of luxury taste, modernity, and appreciation for art and design makes La Belle Juliette a top destination for travelers who want elegance while feeling welcomed and comfortable in their surroundings.

Website: http://www.labellejuliette.com

The warm atmosphere and decadent design of these boutique hotels as well as the irresistibility of the city in the springtime, makes any and every trip to Paris an unforgettable one.

Originally published June 2011
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