Hôtel Grands Boulevards, <br> Living History

Hôtel Grands Boulevards,
Living History

In this chaotic world of car horns and tarmac, the Grands Boulevards can now boast their own little oasis of calm. Hôtel des Grands Boulevards is the latest creation from the indefatigable Experimental Group, Romée, Pierre-Charles and Olivier, three mates for whom friendship and work are a more than successful combination. Their creed, the restaurant sector, the pleasure of eating and drinking well, in a nutshell, the art of entertaining. London, Paris, New York and Ibiza too, the restaurant sector no longer holds any secrets for them, so it comes as no surprise that they should decide to move into the hotel business. Nothing could be simpler it seems, and they instinctively combined the concept of a comfortable night’s sleep with the pleasure of having a drink or sitting around a big table of people. There are five different types of rooms, all as comfortable as each other, a restaurant, an inner courtyard, a cocktail bar and of course the roof top, all designed by their lifetime friend and partner Dorothée Meilichzon. Whether you can’t wait to tuck into the spare ribs on polenta and other delights devised by the chef Giovanni Passerini, or to sample a delicious cocktail, there’s something for everyone and Hôtel des Grands Boulevards holds the promise of long and delicious nights to come.

, 17 Boulevard Poissonnière – Paris 75002

Chambre Bleue Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Chambre Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Chambre Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Chambre Salon Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Salle de bain Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Salle de bain Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris

Could you tell us about the history of this building?

Olivier

It dates back to the revolutionary era, and was built in 1770 by the owner of the neighbouring mansion house, on the site of a former garden, with a view to renting it out.

Would you like to share your vision of what makes a good hotel?

Olivier

We were lucky enough to have a background in restaurants and cocktail bars. These are things that invite travellers to do more than just spend the night in a room – and, as ever, feature the standards of service you associate with the Experimental Group: friendly yet ultra-professional with high-quality produce, fine wine, good cocktails, and lively, welcoming spaces. At the Hôtel Grands Boulevards, we have decided to take things even further with the in-room experience – for example, by offering an original choice of minibar products and incredible bedding that was not originally designed for use in hotels.

Dorothée

We’ve taken lots of established practices from the upper echelons of the hotel industry, picking our favourite parts to break free from the confines of categorisation.

Pierre-Charles

The bar and the restaurant are not something that the hotel offers because it has to: they are designed to be a lively place for people to meet. While it’s a paradox, travellers don’t want to be tourists when they arrive. Here, travellers have the option of mingling directly with the locals and immersing themselves in Parisian culture.

What aesthetic stance did you adopt for the property?

Dorothée

In terms of decor, we took a lot of inspiration from the past – from the neighbourhood, the building itself, and historical events. Here, Louis XVI style was our common thread. We took a different approach – avoiding ornate splendour, because it didn’t suit the neighbourhood at all, but we took our inspiration from less well known aspects of the period, such as Marie-Antoinette’s farm. At the time, the district was known as the “Promenades” and there were no shops at all. We enjoyed playing on the peasant theme and also having fun with a lot of the conventions of the era. We used canopy beds, red marble which was very popular at the time, and a pattern from the wooden floors of the Chateau in Versailles that I incorporated into the design for the carpet, as well as mirrors that pay tribute to the Hall of Mirrors in the chateau.

Fleurs séchées Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Porte Chambre Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Escalier Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Bar Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Salle à manger Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Chaise rouge Bar Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Hôtel Grands Boulevards, <br> Living History
Hôtel Grands Boulevards, <br> Living History

Could you tell us about some of the decorative details?

Dorothée

There are plenty! I loved the fireplaces, to the extent that they became a bit of a gimmick in my designs. During this project, Marie-Antoinette was my inspiration. She loved rococo, with mosaics of little shells that are a bit kitsch. Starting on that basis, I designed an enormous fireplace in the shape of a shell – an eye catcher in the cocktail bar that we called The Shell. The terracotta tiles in the courtyard came from Italy and were fired in old Etruscan furnaces. To echo that, we created a parquet floor with timber cut to the exact same size as the terracotta. I also loved the wallpaper in the toilets, which was designed by an English artist called Melissa White.

Can you tell us about the food?

Pierre-Charles

Giovanni Passerini is someone that we’ve known for a long time, because he created the menu at the great Pigalle. He won the Fooding prize last year. His cuisine is inspired by both French and Italian traditions, which is amazing because when you read the names of the dishes, we’ve never heard of most of the dishes! He takes traditional recipes, full of rustic flavour, while retaining a spark of elegance and simplicity.

Any stories from working on the project?

Olivier

When pulling down some of the walls on the upper floors, it felt like we were travelling back in time. We found tags and messages that had to be 200 years old!

Any stories from working on the project?

Pierre-Charles

We are located in a district that has lots of theatres and a tradition of show business. Historically, it was also a hot spot for newspaper publishers. We are taking the time to appreciate opening this property, then we will start to tap into all that.

Étagère Salle à manger Restaurant Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Bar Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Cheminée coquillage Hall Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Hôtel Grands Boulevards, <br> Living History
Hôtel Grands Boulevards, <br> Living History

Hôtel Grands Boulevards is an oasis in the concrete jungle.

Tabouret de bar Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Toilettes Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Toilettes Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris
Tapisserie Hôtel Grands Boulevards Paris

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