Paris’ 9th district which was at the height of its fame and popularity from the 1890s’ Belle Époque through the 1920s’ Années folles (‘Crazy years’) is home to some of the most iconic French cultural and lifestyle institutions. Le Grand Rex – not only the largest cinema / theatre hall in Paris but a landmark of Art Deco style architecture (established 1932), Les Folies Bergère, the cabaret music hall still in operation since 1869 (restored earlier this year) and Le Bouillon Chartier – an authentic Parisian restaurant which has remained intact both in style and service, since its creation in 1896 in a former train station concourse (tables are still shared between strangers and the bill is written directly on the disposable paper tablecloth).
Musée de la Vie Romantique (The Museum of Romantic Life), Musée Grévin (Paris’ wax statues museum with over 400 personalities of France’s history), the Musée du Parfum and Musée de la Franc-Maçonnerie (Museum of Freemasonry) are just some of the hot spots of the area.
It is in the heart of this authentic Parisian district that hoteliers Jacques Konckier and his daughter Lisa Konckier-Abrat, teamed up with renowned French architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte and Chef Bruno Doucet to create HOTEL DE NELL, a unique French luxury hotel concept – chic through subtle references to French lifestyle, luxurious through comfort and ultimate quality of materials and finishes. The ‘basics’ of a 21st century luxury hotel are tacked so effortlessly at Hotel de Nell, where the team led by Arnaud Valary provide the most personalized and intuitive service.
I was fortunate to meet Arnaud during my recent stay at Hotel de Nell and in so many years of extensive travels and staying at so many luxury hotels, I have to admit I was truly impressed by his immense passion as well as his innate ability to listen and take inspiration from the smallest details. ‘My job is 7 days a week. I prefer weekends so I can meet personally each of my clients’. For Aranud nothing seemed too much or out of place, from picking up the phone in the Reception to taking an order in the restaurant, thus instilling his team a unique sense of confidence, which enhance the ‘safety of being in good hands’ which guests feel.
Since opening in February, Hotel de Nell has become a huge hit for its dining, among Parisians and visitors. Much like the efficient service provided by the hotel, food could not be more tasty, genuine and real. I felt like I was served by a member of my family and I would expect grandma to say hi from the kitchen. The Restaurant ‘La Regalade Conservatoire’ is fully booked every night, so reservations are a must.
Soundproofing (indoor-outdoor), lighting and functionality have been taken to ultimate levels at Hotel de Nell – Arnaud was telling me about how the hallways and furnishing have been supervised by a Sound Engineer. Most of the furniture and interior design elements both in rooms and in the public areas are custom made, each detail having been overseen by Wilmotte – Japanese bathtubs carved from one large piece of marble, heated floors in the open bathrooms and Artemide lighting, Ligne Rosset couches, Edition chairs with a see-through glass-enclosed fireplace etc. Other luxury amenities come as a ‘standard’ – a rain shower (with strong water pressure), high-speed Wi-Fi (complimentary), Nespresso machines or a generous wardrobe space.
Having been to Paris on my occasions, Hotel de Nell provided me with a most authentic French experience, REAL Paris, with authentic small shops, cafes, galleries and bistros. A dedicated comprehensive photo gallery of the hotel and the neighbourhood is available on our Facebook page. A video preview of a Prestige Room at Hotel de Nell can be viewed on this link http://youtu.be/CJU6DT8dYyc
Hotel de Nell is the third hotel of Jacques and Lisa, under the Charm and More brand – all the three supervised by Arnaud: Benkiraï in Saint Tropez and Residence de Nell, Paris.
Oliver Petcu in Paris
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