9 Paris Palace Hotels

Jennifer Ladonne | February 01, 2018

What makes a Paris Palace hotel special? In short, everything. A head above the five-star rating, the Palace designation—created in 2010—requires hotels to meet hundreds of exacting standards both obvious (location, size, service, gastronomy, etc.) and not so obvious (pool, separate toilets, commitment to sustainability...). It's therefore no surprise that there are only nine palaces in Paris, with two—the newly renovated Ritz and Hotel de Crillon—waiting in the wings. It is also no surprise that they are all, in their own way, sublime—and sublimely expensive.

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Hôtel Plaza Athénée

Why it made the list

After a spruce up and expansion in 2014 this Paris institution kept its signature flowing window boxes while adding a modern lustre to its guest rooms and common areas that mix classic sophistication with a contemporary flair. The feather in the hotel's cap may be Alain Ducasse's glittering veggie-centric restaurant, but the glamorous Dior spa and the Relais Bistro—a listed historic monument famous for its rollicking Wednesday jazz nights—burnish the overall allure. If you have cash to burn, check out the terrific Eiffel suite (with a framed view of the entire tower) and the sumptuous private apartments next door.

Distinguished by the scarlet flowers cascading over its eleg Read More


Le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris

Why it made the list

A cheeky Philippe Starck-signed redesign brought this grand dame roaring back into the 21st century, conveying an edgy, art-centric footprint to this otherwise sedate neighborhood in the shadow of the Arc de Triomphe. The art-strewn hotel's own hybrid art gallery-cum-concept store, private screening room, and luminous bar are catnip to a chic, cosmopolitan crowd, as well as the one-star restaurant by the international Japanese chef Nobu Matsuhisa and scrumptious pastries by Pierre Hermé.

The glamorous Royal Monceau Raffles offers unparalleled luxu Read More


Park Hyatt Paris Vendôme

Why it made the list

Past the ornate 19th-century exterior lies a serene, carefully burnished interior, where a haven of discretely cozy nooks allows the A-list clientele to hobnob in peaceful anonymity. Ideally located just off the elegant Place Vendôme, between Opéra and the Louvre, the Park Hyatt projects a contemporary Asian-inspired glamour that extends to the understated but oh-so-sophisticated guest rooms, a refreshing change from the more traditional palaces' damask and gilding. An intimate spa and Michelin-star dining included.

Understated luxury with a contemporary Zen vibe differentiat Read More


Mandarin Oriental Paris

Why it made the list

Set smack dab in the middle of the rue Saint-Honoré, a prime Paris shopping mecca, the Mandarin Oriental's sleekly modern lobby and towering courtyard garden seem at first glance more imperious than cozy. An impression immediately dispelled in the lush, oversized rooms, with breezy courtyard terraces and enormous baths. Thierry Marx's pristine three-star Michelin restaurant may be the star of the show, and the bar, hewn out of single piece of marble, attracts a sophisticated mix of locals and international jet-setters.

Of Paris's palace hotels—the highest designation—the Mandari Read More


Hôtel Meurice

Why it made the list

A favorite of the international fashion set, this elegant grand dame facing the Tuileries gardens has made an art out of pleasing a wide range of guests, from royals to eccentrics (Salvador Dali frequently lodged here, ocelots in tow). The damask-and-gilt-heavy decor may seem like a throwback to another time, but that's half the charm. The other half is the hotel's famous Bar 228, a lavishly gilded and frescoed gastronomic restaurant (boasting one of the city's finest pastry chefs), and some palatial top-floor suites with panoramic views from the beating heart of Paris.

Since 1835, the Meurice has welcomed royalty and celebrities Read More


The Peninsula Paris

Why it made the list

A soaring lobby of gleaming marble crowned by a cascade of crystal leaves greet you at this contemporary monument to deluxe living. But the hotel has its historic side: as Paris's grand Majestic Hotel (the ex-mansion of a Russian count and Spanish royalty), the Paris Accords were signed here, ending the Vietnam war. A half-billion dollar renovation later, the hotel reopened in 2015 with one of Paris's most impressive spas, three exquisite restaurants, and some of the city's best panoramic views from the top-floor bar, bistro, and private terraces.

After a $900 million renovation that restored the luster of Read More


Four Seasons Hôtel George V Paris

Why it made the list

Presiding over Paris's famous Golden Triangle, the George V was a symbol of Parisian opulence long before it was linked with the Four Seasons luxury group, in 1999. The hotel still upholds a standard of French savoir faire in every detail, from its majestic tapestry-lined Galerie, to its three gastronomic restaurants, which together add up to five Michelin stars, the most of any hotel in Paris. The pool and spa are undergoing a revamp, set to be completed sometime in 2018. In the meantime, guests can enjoy a lavish spa on the hotel's fourth floor.

As poised and polished as the day it opened in 1928, this su Read More


Shangri-La Hotel Paris

Why it made the list

Once the city dwelling of Prince Roland Bonaparte, grand nephew to the Emperor and an avid amateur botanist, this stately mansion's carved, gilded, and frescoed salons and sitting rooms are listed historic monuments, as is the prince's former bedroom, where you are welcome to spend the night. Besides the opulent Bar Botaniste, three excellent restaurants, including two-star L'Abeille (one of our favorites) and the Michelin-starred Cantonese Shang Palace, the hotel boasts a superb pool, complete with an outdoor sunning area, and stupendous views of the Eiffel Tower.

Displaying French elegance at its best, this impressively re Read More


Le Bristol

Why it made the list

Since its opening in 1925 Le Bristol has been synonymous with the kind of discrete Old World luxury that appeals to luminaries who keep a lower profile. Since serving as the unofficial American Embassy during WWII, it has been the favorite haunt of discerning Anglophones, who appreciate its tasteful Louis XV-style décor, best described as "opulent sans bling," the spacious interior garden, and the penthouse pool with romantic views over Paris's rooftops. With world-famous three-star chef Eric Frechon at the helm of Epicure, the hotel's gastronomic restaurant, and a laid-back one-star bistro, the hotel shines among the palaces.

The historic Bristol ranks among Paris's most exclusive hote Read More

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