Is it a palace? Is it a parliament? It’s the Hotel Lutetia in Paris, newly restored and now open for service. If you’re wondering how long it takes to carry out a 200-million-euro makeover, at the luxurious Lutetia Hotel, only about four years. Hard to miss, this 108-year-hotel is parked in Saint-Germain-des-Prés area on the Left Bank of Paris.
Having reopened its wooden revolving doors only earlier last month, Hotel Lutetia claims to be the only Grand hotel on the Left Bank of Paris—the area which is home to the Luxembourg Gardens and the Eiffel Tower. For the uninitiated, a Grand Dame Hotel is a rather reputed title given to a hotel in a given city or an area and has, but is not limited to, a stunning façade, history to claim, and a noteworthy name in the city’s social circuit.
The hotel has an intimidating past—it is where James Joyce penned down parts of Ulysses, and where the likes of Pablo Picasso, Jean Paul Sartre and Ernest Hemingway frequented. If that isn’t quite enough, it also saw two phases of the World War II, first as a refugee camp for Jewish families and later, ironically, as the headquarters for a German Intelligence Agency (read more of its history here.)
It is for its present, however, that it is most talked about these days. The makeover that is the talk of the town hasn't touched upon its art deco exterior of the hotel, but more of the interiors. The refurbishing work was undertaken by architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte and his team.
As per the hotel, the general layout of the building has been changed, reducing the rooms from 230 to 184 in number. There is also a stunning new courtyard, a 700 sq m pool, a well-being centre, sauna and an infinity edge bath. Original frescoes have been restored, such as the work by Jean Le Gac in the Lutetia Brasserie, and ornamented ceilings have been painstakingly brought back to life in the now Bar Josephine.
A room per night in the basic Superior suite will cost close to 700 euros a night and at a one-bedroom suite is approximately 1,500 euros a night. For the opening, they are running an offer which gives you a complimentary room upgrade, complimentary breakfast and late check out, and that, for most, is luxury indeed.