Few neighborhoods in Paris offer both the convenience and the charm of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. Best known for attracting a celebrity-filled literary and art crowd including Picasso, Sartre, and Truffaut to its cafes in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the area still holds a starry appeal for the bohemian bourgeoisie. It’s here that you’ll find L’Hotel, a jewel box property with its own fascinating history, located within an easy 15-minute walk of many of the city’s major attractions and as well as a slew of stylish boutiques, art galleries, and restaurants.
With a claim to fame as Oscar Wilde’s final home (guests can book the Oscar Wilde Suite where the writer’s bill — never paid — adorns the wall) it only makes sense that L’Hotel channels the opulence and tasteful flamboyance of its most beloved resident. Designed by the renowned Jacques Garcia and inspired by Empire style — L’Hotel was built in 1828 — expect richly colored textured wallpapers, brass lamps, deep marble bathtubs, antique furniture, and original works of art in each of the 20 individually decorated rooms.
The public spaces, centered around the hotel’s famous spiral staircase, are equally inviting — particularly when the bar, Wilde’s Lounge, hosts live jazz on Thursday nights. Before you head out for the evening, be sure to grab a cocktail and relax on the plush velvet couches where legends like Serge Gainsbourg, Elizabeth Taylor, and Salvador Dalí once sat. (Modern celebs are known to stop by too, including Tilda Swinton, who has a drink named after her).
If you prefer to have some quiet time, head downstairs to the hotel’s hammam pool and steam room for a candlelit soak. It’s just one of the hidden treasures at L’Hotel.
- Location: Paris, France
- Stars: Four-Star
- The Vibe: A ritzy but discrete haunt packed with history
- Food + Drink: Rates for most rooms include continental breakfast. While there isn’t a full-service restaurant, the bar offers substantial appetizers and desserts in the evening. You can also get drinks and food delivered directly to your room.
- Amenities: Hammam pool and steam room (guests are invited to book a complimentary private session for one hour each day), spa treatments, free wifi, and daily housekeeping.
- 5 Nearby Attractions: The Louvre, the Musée d’Orsay, the Jardin du Luxembourg, Notre Dame, and the Jardin des Tuileries.
- Any Personal Neighborhood Recs? Dip your toe into the Paris art scene by dropping by a few of the city’s top galleries, including Galerie Valois, Galerie Flak, and Galerie Claude Bernard. Afterward, grab a table at Le Clown Bar, an ambitious yet unpretentious bistro housed in an 19th century monument or swing by Freddy’s, which offers an unparalleled selection of wines by the glass alongside tasty small plates like kebabs, ceviche, and beignets.
- Rooms: Twenty unique, lavishly decorated rooms that range from the diminutive (183 sq. ft.) Mignon category to the Apartment with a private terrace overlooking the bell tower of Saint Germain-des Prés church. If you’d like a sitting area, your best bet is booking one of the Grand junior suites or larger.
- Pricing: Rooms start at $333/night.
- Closest Airport: Charles de Gaulle International Airport and Orly Airport