Palaces are fascinating, since they are the perfect symbols of French refinement! Only a few luxury hotels are called palaces, for they are the most luxurious of all. Palaces constitute a kind of luxury hotels’ “crème de la crème.” Their several services are unique in Paris: they aim for excellence; they are the best in the « art of hotel trade ». Here is an overview of the 7 best palaces in Paris.
1) Shangri-La Hotel Paris
Area: Trocadéro – Passy
10, avenue d’Iéna, 75116 Paris
9.6/10 : Reviewed by the France Hotel Guide’s Expert
Back in time, the Shangri-La Hotel Paris used to be the house of Prince Roland Bonaparte, a highly historical place and one the most magnificent hotels in Paris. As soon as you enter its elegant lobby, you’ll already be feeling delighted, thanks to the royal treatment you’ll receive.
“The Asian-like palace”
In your room, you will be fascinated by the breathtaking view of the Eiffel Tower and the Seine River and you will understand why Paris is commonly referred to as « the most beautiful city in the world ». The room’s elegance of yesteryear, lovingly decorated by craftsmen, reflects in the city, which extends below your feet. You’ll find the most famous haute couture stores on the avenue Montaigne and the avenue George V, only a few steps away from the hotel.
The palace has 65 large rooms and 36 luxury suites, which offer customers the privilege to benefit from an exceptional dwelling in a unique setting. The rooms were created by interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon; they keep the charm of a Parisian private residence, thanks to their refined decoration. The materials and the furniture chosen by Rochon are custom-made, for an even better comfort and harmony of the space.
The 35 beautiful suites offer unforgettable views over Paris, the Seine River, the hotel’s garden, and the Eiffel Tower. The Shangri-La Hotel Paris also comprises an Imperial Suite, located in Prince Roland Bonaparte’s former apartments, which explains its remarkable character. As for the Shangri-La and the Chaillot suites, they have an extraordinary perspective on the Eiffel Tower, as if it were a head-to-head!
The Shangri-La has made a reputation for itself thanks to its rooms, but also thanks to its restaurants. They are three, each with a universe of its own, but with a common point: excellence! If you’re going for a light meal, choose La Bauhinia! It was named after the flower. The restaurant will enchant you: it is decorated with a gorgeous dome and Murano candelabra, which mirrors its cuisine’s elegance and savoir-faire.
You will devour and savour the Shang Palace Cantonese cuisine, which opens a window onto Asia in the heart of Paris. The menu offers a wide range of choices, very subtle and complex dishes like the Beggar’s Chicken (Jiao Hua Ji in Chinese) or the Peking Duck. You will enjoy these dishes made by Chef Samuel Lee, in a private salon inspired by the Tang dynasty.
The menu also offers French meals, but they are combined with Asian flavours, so that they are more authentic. You will also appreciate the exquisite wine list, and try the tea-time experience and its numerous sweets, dear to Asian tradition.
Once you’re sated, you’re ready to go on a tour in the City of Lights, walk along the Seine banks, because, like writer Victor Hugo used to say, “A breath of Paris preserves the soul.” (taken from Les Misérables)
The hotel, just like its rooms and suites, offers a stunning perspective on Paris, facing the capital’s symbol, the Eiffel Tower.
What we like: The sophisticated suites, like the Imperial Suite, which used to be Prince Roland Bonaparte’s room.
What we love: The palace’s three restaurants, each as scrumptious as the next.
2) Mandarin Oriental Paris
Area: Louvre – Châtelet
251, rue Saint-Honoré, 75001 Paris
9.1/10 : Reviewed by the France Hotel Guide’s Expert
A few steps away from the Place Vendôme, overlooking the rue Saint-Honoré, the Mandarin Oriental was one of the first palaces to be opened in Paris. It will offer you all the comfort and the modernity of a twenty-first century palace.
“The new kid, already looking big”
There are 138 rooms and suites, divided into fourteen different categories. For those who love simplicity, the “simple” room will be just right, as it will give you all the necessary luxury, despite its name! You’ll enjoy its king-size bed, its balcony with a view over the garden, and its bathroom with both a bathtub and a shower.
More impressive and roomier suites are also available, especially if you’re looking for a surface area of four hundred square meters.
All the suites are welcoming and nice, thanks to the decor and the layout. Most of them comprise a living room, a big bedroom, a walk-in wardrobe, and a gorgeous bathroom.
The palace will provide you with a spa, a real oasis dedicated to Oriental-style well-being that will offer you special beauty services. The spa comprises four individual beauty services suites with their steam shower cabins. Nevertheless, lovers are not to be outdone: the spa also comprises three couple beauty service suites with a revitalizing swimming pool. The hammam with its oriental herbs is the hit of the show in this relaxing escape.
There are also two restaurants and a bar. The famous Chef Thierry Marx has decided to open a restaurant in this magic place, the “Sur Mesure” (“custom-made”). You’ll feel like you’re in a nest where white is priority. Like the chef says, white emphasizes the idea of purity and discovery of his meals. You’ll be full of colours and life after you’ve tasted Thierry Marx’s creations, as if you were an untouched master painting.
What we like: The spa’s steam bath.
What we love: The spacious suites.
3) Hotel le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris
Area: Champs-Elysées – Madeleine
37, avenue Hoche, 75008 Paris
8.7/10 : Reviewed by the France Hotel Guide’s Expert
Over time, the Royal Monceau has become the meeting place of artists, celebrities, and intellectuals. It was entirely renovated in 2010, under the guidance of Philippe Starck. Nowadays, it combines two atmospheres at the same time: Paris’s typical salons and artist residencies. Some of its numerous famous lodgers, among others, were Vietnamese political activist Ho Chi Minh, or French singer Michel Polnareff, who spent 800 days in the hotel without ever going outside, to record his album Kâma-Sûtra.
“The arty palace”
As it is deeply dedicated to art, the Royal Monceau offers spaces revolving around artistic creation. The “Art District” zone is one the centre of gravity of the hotel’s artistic and cultural life. The Royal Monceau is now an important meeting place in the world of contemporary art in Paris: the Art District welcomes artists, informed connoisseurs, art sponsors, and professionals. The hotel also has its own art collection, composed of works by international artists like Stéphane Calais, Rosson Crow, or Nikolaï Polissky.
There is also a movie theater, Le Katara. It has 99 seats and the latest technological innovations. This is the right place if you want to watch a “palace-style” movie with friends or in duet, in order to end your weekend with a hint of glamour and romanticism. You might want to savour their caramelized popcorn made by Pierre Hermé Paris, and discover the 7th art greatest classics, like Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, for example.
The Royal Monceau welcomes the first Matsuhisha restaurant in France, which cleverly mixes Asian and American food. The Matsuhisha Paris is led by Chef Hideki Endo, who has a very contemporary vision of Japanese cuisine. The dishes on the menu travel from flavours to savours; they are generous and exotic. The culinary journey offered by the Matsuhisha is unique: you’ll be served yellowfin tuna sashimi with jalapeño chili peppers, black cod, and a miso soup, some tacos and, of course, the very traditional and very well-known sushi.
In a spirit always artistic, the hotel will suggest that you book a studio room, for instance, flooded with natural light; it is the epitome of romanticism! The room is an appealing and ideal place to book for a couple, with its wood-like shades and its quality materials. An acoustic guitar, that will allow you to unleash your creativity, stands alongside the hotel’s private art collection.
What we like: The whole hotel revolves around art.
What we love: The movie theater Le Katara, very uncommon in a palace.
4) Four Seasons Hotel George V Paris
Area: Champs-Elysées – Madeleine
31, avenue George V, 75008 Paris
9.3/10 : Reviewed by the France Hotel Guide’s Expert
The hotel Four Seasons Hotel George V, with its private terraces contemplating the capital, embodies Paris’s elegant style. This is an idyllic setting, a few minutes away from the Arc de Triomphe and the avenue des Champs-Elysées. Thanks to the neighbourhood’s unique atmosphere, you’ll realize how magical the “City of Lights” is. If you want to go for a walk in duet, the Monceau garden is 15 minutes’ walk away.
“Excellence and elegance”
The rooms and suites available in the hotel are as charming as the rest of the neighbourhood. They are roomy and modern; however, they maintain the magical and intimate aspect of the whole establishment. There are several types of rooms: the classics, the “superiors,” the “deluxes,” but they all have one common goal: to bewitch customers and offer a romantic and private setting. What’s more, you will also have the opportunity to book a room with a balcony overlooking the historical and fancy area of the Golden Triangle (“Le Triangle d’Or”), so that you can admire Paris’s most beautiful monuments by night (like the Eiffel Tower, for example).
Moreover, the core strength of the hotel is the number of its suites (11), all different, all unique. The Royal Suite, for instance, has 18th century-like furniture, which is a reminder of French Renaissance elegance. Cabinetmaker André-Charles Boulle’s chests of drawers lead to a sumptuous living room, where one can have dinner, lunch, or simply relax. The French windows open onto the private terrace contemplating the beautiful Art Deco fountain.
The staff is obliging and skilled. But the hotel George V also boasts a very good restaurant, Le Cinq (“The Five”). The Cinq has three Michelin stars. The dining room’s French windows will give you a perspective of the marbled inner courtyard. The setting and the ambience, ideal for a duo, are enhanced by the menu. It is inspired by French traditional cuisine, along with new gastronomic trends.
You will also benefit from a spa and a sauna, the emphasis being laid upon well-being and relaxation. These structures are more modern than the rest of the hotel. They were made especially for couples.
Last but not least, you might want to end your holidays in the inner swimming pool where you will swim a few lengths; you’ll be completely satisfied!
What we like: The hotel’s location, a few blocks away from the Champs-Elysées.
What we love: The suites, for instance, the Royal suite, with its balcony that contemplates the Art Deco fountain.
5) Park Hyatt Paris Vendôme
Area: Opéra – Bourse
5, rue de la Paix, 75002 Paris
9/10 : Reviewed by the France Hotel Guide’s Expert
At the heart of the famous Place Vendôme, you will discover one of Paris’s most magnificent hotels. This 5-star hotel will offer you a unique perspective on the city, since it overlooks the renowned street rue de la Paix; it is also a few minutes’ walk away from the Opéra Garnier.
“The stunning parisian”
The location will be just right for you whatever you desire, whether you want to visit the Louvre Museum, go for a walk on the avenue des Champs-Elysées at the end of the day or discover the Musée d’Orsay’s spectacular and captivating collection. Go through the gates of this luxurious hotel and enter a world of refinement and sensuality in the heart of the City of Lights.
The Park Hyatt Paris Vendôme is a mix of modern architecture (purified design and shapes) and more classic designs. The structure of the building was conceived by famous American designer Ed Tuttle.
The palace will provide you with well-known suites like the Suite Vendôme, on the fifth floor of the hotel. The suite is composed of two bedrooms and a balcony made of teak. The view of the rue de la Paix and the Vendôme column is breathtaking. You can transform it into a 4-bedroom apartment. The living and the dining rooms are quite wide, with a bar inside. What’s unique is the presence of a steam shower and a hot tub.
You’ll go on an unforgettable gastronomic journey, thanks to the Park Hyatt’s restaurants and bars: Le Pur (“The Pure”) by Jean-François Rouquette, a starred restaurant which serves a refined and rich type of cuisine; La Table du Chef (“The Chef’s Table”), Les Orchidées (“The Orchids”); and La Terrasse (“The Terrace”). You will also discover the bar, which was awarded several times for its inventiveness concerning the blend of aromas in drinks and the barmen’s original creations.
The Parisian palace Park Hyatt Paris Vendôme is the perfect place for a romantic weekend getaway, thanks to its elegant rooms, somewhere between charm and romanticism, and thanks to its gourmet restaurants full of unique and delicious flavours.
What we like: The bar with its innovative cocktails.
What we love: The view over the place Vendôme from the rooms.
6) Le Meurice
Area: Louvre – Châtelet
228, rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris
9.4/10 : Reviewed by the France Hotel Guide’s Expert
The palace Le Meurice was first built in 1835. It is ideally situated in front of the Tuileries gardens. It is one of the most beautiful and most impressive French palaces. This palace is a magical, calm, and elegant palace, in which the classicism of the 18th century’s architecture and contemporary fineness meet. The establishment is faithful to the values of the French way of life. Numerous painters and writers have made their mark on the history of Le Meurice; the palace is and will always be the place to express French essence and way of life.
“The oldest nonetheless superb”
There is a new universe on every floor, as peculiar and bewitching as the previous. The Meurice fosters its taste for luxury: its 160 rooms are decorated in a King Louis XVI style. Every room has a beautiful marbled bathroom with a shower and a bathtub. Every room or suite is a peace haven.
The hotel’s restaurant Le Meurice has two Michelin stars; it serves dishes you will drool over because of their inimitable taste, with an original presentation; they are the core strength of the restaurant. Another restaurant, the Dali, is a tribute to the Spanish painter who used to attend the hotel.
Le Meurice gives its residents the possibility to enjoy exceptional gastronomic moments. Hence, if you choose the 2-star restaurant Le Meurice, you’ll be eating in front of the Tuileries gardens. This unique setting will guarantee you both pleasure for the eyes and for the taste. As for Le Dali, it is topped by an imposing 475 feet long hessian designed by Ara Starck. The young designer confessed that she wanted to renew the Parisian tradition to incorporate art in daily life.
With its intimate atmosphere, its comfy leather armchairs, and its dark wood paneling, the Bar 228 is the perfect place to sip a cocktail and to relax. Drinks were created exclusively for the bar by a famous barman, William Oliveri, who’s been working in the hotel for over thirty years. He served Dali, Richard Burton, etc., which surely is a sign of quality!
Le Meurice has a luminous spa: the whole place is a hymn to relaxation, in a modern setting. In a spirit of complete relaxation, the spa offers to rejuvenate your body entirely. Thus, you will spend ninety minutes of real happiness thanks to the “180°” and the “Mister M Ritual” for male customers. You will also enjoy the exclusive massage “Le Meurice.”
What we like: The spa’s massage “Le Meurice.”
What we love: The menu conceived by Alain Ducasse.
7) Plaza Athénée
Area: Champs-Elysées – Madeleine
25, avenue Montaigne, 75008 Paris
9.5/10 : Reviewed by the France Hotel Guide’s Expert
The palace Plaza Athénée has been illuminating Paris with its aura; it’s been both intriguing and captivating since 1913. It is ideally located on the avenue Montaigne, so you can go for a walk while window-shopping under the pillars of the Eiffel Tower. The hotel is a true symbol of French elegance.
“The king of all”
Under the guidance (and the creativity) of Marie-José Pommereau, the design manager for 14 years, the rooms and suites of the Plaza are all flawless. Delight yourself with the beauty of the Superior Room, embellished in an Art Deco or Regency style, with period furniture. Every room has an office area with a desk; in the refined and marbled bathroom you’ll enjoy both the bathroom and the shower.
“The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it.” This sentence Oscar Wilde wrote in The Picture of Dorian Gray perfectly fits the restaurant of the Plaza Athénée. The restaurant “Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée” (“Alain Ducasse at the Plaza Athénée”) was created by the famous chef Alain Ducasse. The meals served follow the idea of a cuisine composed only of fish, vegetables, and grains. The restaurant marries the flavours to perfection, for a pleasure of appreciation at all times. The food is healthier, more natural, and environmentally friendly. The menu is inspired by the shojin, an Asian cuisine with a range of food products composed of vegetables and grains.
The restaurant also serves a broad range of wines; here, the traditional presentation is replaced by a more innovative and practical one. Wines are listed according to their generation, meaning their “age”: 10 years of age, 15 years of age, or even 55 years of age. Wines are chosen by Gérard Margeon, head sommelier of Alain Ducasse’s restaurants. The place is full of mystery and surprises, like this singular table, located under a massive shell-like structure, where waiters will suggest an exclusive wine list to you. The Bordeaux, served here, is the oenological symbol of French savoir-faire.
The palace’s restaurant also focuses on the looks: the room was designed by Patrick Jouin and Sanjit Manku: the curves and the materials are both fascinating and calming. On the table, the shapes combine the past and the present to perfection. The decor gives customers a message: the cuisine is innovative; nonetheless, it keeps the haughtiness of French gastronomy. Hence, the noblest materials coexist with the simplest. The restaurant is a reflection of the hotel: unique!
What we like: The wine list.
What we love: The cuisine combines French and Asian food.
Check out our article for your other needs of luxury in Paris (visits, shopping, food)
Mona knows Paris like the back of her hand. Its bars, its restaurants and above all, its hotels, whether you want to sleep, eat, party or just take a walk in Paris, Mona knows them (nearly) all. Follow her lead, she will gladly give you all her good tips!