Hotel Original: a Magical Hotel in the Heart of Paris
Awakened by the shrill sounds of the alarm, I desperately try to remember if I'm snuggled under the faux fur bed cover in the Crystal Queen boudoir or if I'll open my eyes and see the claw foot tub seductively placed in the corner of the Enchanted Forest room. As I fumble for my phone to switch off the noise, the events of the previous evening come flooding back into my mind...
Once upon a time in a magical city filled with light, Sylvia (aka Finding Noon) asked if I wanted to join her on a voyage to discover a newly transformed, three-star hotel that she had been asked to review for the Girls' Guide to Paris. Never one to shy away from adventure, I hopped on my sturdy steed and journeyed to the recently re-named Hotel Original in the über-trendy 11th arrondissement. Walking through the front door, Sylvia and I were immediately transported to an enchanted land, where jellyfish lights dangled from the ceilings and fashionably dressed French bloggers sipped flutes of champagne and savored tasty tidbits.
After checking our names off the list and offering us a drink, the hostess suggested that Sylvia and I visit the public spaces while waiting for our guided tour of the hotel. Marveling at the fairytale like atmosphere, we admired the unique interior created by designer Stella Cadente and tried to stay out of the way of the other bloggers, who were busy snapping photos and expressing their delight at the harmonious use of such bold colors.
As we made our way to the first floor of the Hotel Original, the manager revealed that woman prefer the Crystal Queen boudoir, while men prefer the Enchanted Forest rooms. Judging by the reactions of the female bloggers, I would say that he understands his clientele because just as we were about to leave, one of the women couldn't resist the urge to run her hands over the luxuriant white bed cover and sink her fingernails into the faux fur. If she hadn't been surrounded by a group of people with cameras around their necks, I'm fairly sure that she would have flung her body on the bed to get the full effect.
On our way to the next room, I reminded myself not to be distracted by superficial pleasures and to look at the room through the eyes of a discerning guest. Amenities include air conditioning, flat screen televisions, hair dryer and makeup mirror, bathrobes, toiletries, and most importantly for bloggers, free wifi. Additionally, blackout curtains keep out the morning light and double paned windows ensure that there is minimal noise from the busy Boulevard Beaumarchais.
While I could easily imagine spending a romantic night, or two or three..., in one of the double rooms with Stéphane, I would have been thrilled by the quadruple room, reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland, back in the days when we used to travel with our two children. Not only would the vibrant colors have lifted our spirits after a long day visiting the sights of Paris but there would have been some negotiating over who would sleep on the bed next to the Cheshire cat and who would be by the rabbit light.
Would I stay at the Hotel Original while visiting Paris? Most definitely. That's why I was so disappointed to find myself in my own bed when I woke up this morning. In the hopes that I would be one of the four lucky bloggers to win a free night at the hotel, I even took my toothbrush and told Stéphane to be on stand-by!
8 Boulevard Beaumarchais
75011 Paris (minutes away from Place de la Bastille and the Marais)
Please click here to read the reviews of Hotel Original on Trip Advisor.
Ooh, pretty! I don't really like the look of the Crystal Queen room though, my fav is the quad room. Looks like the decor from the backseat of grandpa's car exploded in the last room ;) I'm guessing that makes it the mystery Enchanted ForestReplyDelete
I wish that my photos of the Enchanted Forest Room would have done it more justice because there were lots of special touches, like feather trim on the curtains. I also liked the positioning of the claw foot tub in the corner of the room. But I can see where the plaid bed throw could remind you of the backseat of Grandpa's car. We always used to cover up with a plaid blanket that looked remarkably similar to the one in the photo when we used to drive around in freezing weather to look at Christmas lights in Minnesota.Delete
When they pulled the first blogger's name out of the champagne bucket, she got to select which room she wanted to stay in...and so on until they drew four names. The whole time I was trying to decide if I would pick the Enchanted Forest or the Alice Room but it turned out that I didn't need to worry about it cuz they didn't pick my name. :(
Interesting place, but not my style. Prefer Old World, hardwood...yea, oak and cherry to neon and plastic. Looks like something from the Carnival fleet. BUT having said that....a free getaway? where do I sign up??ReplyDelete
Nancy, Old World, hardwood, oak and cherry?! I seem to remember that there were other more interesting attractions at your hotel in Paris! At least that's what you told me when you couldn't pull yourself away from it.Delete
LOL....wonder if PLaneJane will have the same view...she booked that room!Delete
Yeah, I'm not so sure. Maybe this is a case where less would be more. It's all just a bit too too for me. And who knew the 11th was trendy now? I guess that converted trainline and the new Bastille really did the trick.ReplyDelete
I wish though you had won a free night--that would have been fun. Was there a swag bag after the event with free toiletries and other goodies?
In addition to being trendy, the 11th has become a real mecca for foodies from around the world. I'll try to find the link for an article about the 3 best neighborhoods in Europe that includes the 11th.Delete
Ahh, here you go - the article is in Travel and Leisure
There wasn't a swag bag but the hors d'oeuvres were amazing. Truffle finger sandwiches, prosciutto stuffed with something and closed with a little clothespin, etc., etc! And they kept coming and coming as did the champagne.
And, yes, it would have been REALLY fun to win a free night but the young bloggers who did were super pleased, so I'm not too disappointed.
Yup. Put me in the "too trendy" column, as well.ReplyDelete
During our last visit to Paris two years ago, Mike and I did stay in the 11th, at the recommendation of a business associate.
The area was alive with young people, and did appear to be the up-and-coming neighborhood. But I would still choose the 5th for my stays in Paris, near the Jardin des Plantes. Love this location!
Oh, that's interesting that you stayed in the 11th last time. I'll be curious to hear more about your impressions of it the next time that we're together.Delete
As for the area around the Jardin des Plantes, that's a neighborhood that I still have to explore. If you have any suggestions, please let me know!
I love the design hotels in Paris. Great review and lovely photos (as always).ReplyDelete
Thanks, Mark! Taking photos of the hotel was a real pleasure because the colors are so vibrant and there are so many special details. My only regret is that I didn't have more time in each room!Delete
Wonderful blog & good post.Its really helpful for me, awaiting for more new post. Keep Blogging!ReplyDelete