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Above The lobby lounge of le Cristal seems to come from a parallel universe.

Four small Paris hotels

The most oft-asked question of Lucire’s travel editor, Stanley Moss, is for names of good smaller hotels in Paris. Everyone has a little place where they stayed once in the city of unknown gems around every corner. Here are four properties which deliver a buffet of hospitality tastes. Bonne continuation!
photographed by the author
Le Cristal photographed by Christophe Bielsa


Back to Part Two: Rajasthan


Above The Plaza Tour Eiffel’s lobby lounge with art books.


PLAZA TOUR EIFFEL, located just off Trocadero in the tony 16th, is the perfect business hotel. It is in excellent repair, with cool lobby lounge furnishings (Philippe Starck lighting, van der Rohe chairs), compact bar serving drinks and coffees, and a library of supersize art books. The welcome received from this property is truly a warm one. It’s close to embassies, the OECD, fashion house offices, and features only 41 rooms, all non-smoking. The black key card and dark wood tones appeal to business travellers, who make up 60 per cent of the hotel’s guests. You’ll love the list of complimentary items: newspapers (The International Herald–Tribune, The Guardian, Le Figaro), wifi, lobby computer, bottled water, plus a state-of-the-art fitness centre just off the breakfast room. Kudos for the white tile bathrooms, big towels, robes, l’Occitane amenities. Breakfast is also served in-room, with room service from 6 P.M. to 2 A.M. A superior lodging is junior suite 605 with its petite balcony and Eiffel Tower view.

Plaza Tour Eiffel
32, rue Greuze
75116 Paris
Telephone 33 1 47-27-10-00


Above A literary headboard at the Hôtel le Sénat.


A SMALL HOTEL, steps away from the Jardins de Luxembourg, Hôtel Le Sénat beautifully captures the spirit of the bohemian rive gauche. Still looking good after its 2003 renovation, the property’s cursive headboards recollect the legacy of the famous Left Bank denizens whose photos decorate the spare lobby. This three-star has an optimal location and a young, friendly attitude; its colour scheme basic black. Tourists favour the 41-room hostel with its small accommodations, Hermès amenities, and existential style. There’s the usual subterranean dining room, bar, lounge, tiny business centre, and a photogenic garden. If you need a comfortable garret in which to ponder Sartre and the meaning of life, room 403 is highly recommended.

Hôtel Le Sénat
10, rue de Vaugirard
75006 Paris
Telephone 33 1 43-54-54-54



Above A bread basket and coffee cups at the Hôtel Powers’ bar.


WHERE TO GO for a taste of the retro glory of Regency France with a luxury twist at a mid-range price? Look no further than Hôtel Powers, a 50 rooms-and-suites hotel housed in a heritage building, on a quiet street near Metro Georges V. The optimal location means only two minutes’ walk to the Champs-Élysées, diagonally across from Cartier. You might expect to see Audrey Hepburn walking through the reception area. Her millionaire playboy friend would like to haunt the neighbourhood and inspect its every couture shop.

A deceptively quiet entry masks a time-warp, where rooms have high ceilings and pale walls, classical wood details and heroic marble fireplaces—they are suitable to receive Mme Pompadour. You will appreciate the modern and airy white tile baths, bathrooms stocked with Bulgari amenities, thick robes, and big towels. This is a setting made for room service, especially breakfast in bed. Your option is a charming breakfast room: small, sweet, with pastel green designs, and a very kind lady in attendance.

Two noteworthy rooms: no. 35, spacious with an enormous bath lit by glowing natural light; and no. 58, which has a wraparound terrace. Full room service menu, free wifi and bottled water. Definitely a recommended experience.

Hôtel Powers
52, rue Francois 1er
75008 Paris
Telephone 33 1 47-23-91-05



Top The breakfast room at the Hôtel Cristal. Above One of Le Cristal’s funky suites.


FANS OF THE ASTOUNDING Mattia Bonetti will appreciate his new wild interiors at the recently opened Hôtel Cristal Champs-Élysées. Bonetti, who surpasses the title of designer—he is more of an historian, a repository, a polymath, an encyclopædia of classicism—has created a catalytic cocktail of colour and concept, half-Dr Seuss and half-Etruscan, with a breakfast room from a parallel universe. The inventive use of the repeat crystal motif, weird-shaped reflections, and the one-way mirror from the shower into the bedroom in rooms 2 and 4 make this property a must-stay-in. The décor might look strange but Mattia Bonetti makes comfortable furniture, and these are liveable spaces. Perfect lodging for a young couple on the go in Paris, a Bonetti collector, or people looking to recapture their sense of style and fun.

Hôtel Cristal Champs-Élysées
9, rue Washington
75008 Paris
Telephone 33 1 45-63-27-33


Lucire’s luxury travel special



Top A view of the Eiffel Tower from the balcony at the Plaza Tour Eiffel. Above The breakfast room.



Top A perfect room for contemplating the meaning of life at the Sénat. Above The breakfast room at le Sénat.



Below Hôtel Powers’ breakfast room. A typical mantle clock and fireplace. A shiny, white bathroom à la Kubrick.



Above A light fixture at Hôtel Cristal Champs-Élysées.



Stanley Moss is travel editor of Lucire.



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