The can’t live withouts are growing.
What to wear when the weather can’t make up its mind and neither can I?
A rushed visit to Paris and no time to pack leaves me with only a few choices. Inclement weather, and cooler temperatures meant I reached for my truly most useful dress; the blazer was a no-brainer and already packed and ready for service with the black jeans.
Back to the can’t-live-without dress in a minute.
Hotel de Crillon has recently opened after years of refurbishment and needless to say I have been in a desperate hurry to see. Big sigh, it did not disappoint. The hotel has a feeling of calm and serenity; extreme luxury and wealth can do that for a place. Unlike their famous competitors in Paris, the decor and ambience is not over the top. It is magnificent and glamorous, rich and extravagant but also very beautiful. The flowers were divine but not excessive and the interior fragrance was quite subtle – I cannot even tell you what their signature hotel scent is. I like that. Some of the big boy hotels are so overly fragranced I leave with a major headache and a need to dry-clean my clothes.
We ate our lunch in the casual bar area, looking out to the courtyard and the salon was beautifully appointed and comfortable. There were no constraints on our side and no pressure to move or hurry up. These days I find this refreshing; so often we make reservations and time slots become specific and non-negotiable.
Le Crillon has held a special place in my heart since an anniversary some years ago. Yes, I was spoiled.
We stayed in the Duc de Crillon suite (pictured above), which was as magical as you can imagine. It has been refurbished in the latest round of renovations but from what I see it is even lovelier than ever. I am often asked, which hotel I favour in Paris and I never have the answer. Paris is a city for different occasions and I have been fortunate to stay in some of the most incredible rooms and I have had occasion to stay in some of the worst. These days, I mostly try to find somewhere in the middle unless it is a very special milestone.
Today if you asked me where to stay in Paris I would answer in a very complicated fashion. I would tell you to stay in a well-located hotel at a price point to suit. Parisian hotels are expensive and sometimes not the best value; the boutique versions are better. You don’t need to stay at the rockstars to experience all they have to offer.
I will let you into a little secret; my dream is to have a small boutique hotel in Paris one day.
Every time I stay in Paris my mind races at a million miles with ideas for this. I am working on it.
What I suggest is to save your euros for breakfast at Le Meurice or the Plaza Athénée, the dining rooms are beyond and out of this world. One day have a light lunch at Hôtel de Crillon or the Hôtel Ritz in their garden courtyards or try tea at the Hôtel Georges V, snapping Jeff Leatham’s floral fantasies on your way through. And for an aperitif, I like the bar at Le Bristol and some of the best people watching must surely be at Hôtel Costes.
So back to this dress.
I wore my sweater dress all weekend and been looking for new ones ever since.
If there is one dress staying in my carry on it is the sweater style. xv
Can’t Live Without: Don’t Leave Home Without
images hôtel de crillon