La Maison Champs Elysees by Martin Margiela

La Maison Champs Elysees by Maison Martin Margiela

La Maison Champs Elysees by Maison Martin Margiela

The entrance to the townhouse at No. 8 rue Jean Goujon is nothing, if not discreet. An address one must know to discover, behind its doors, the stage is set for one of our favorite’s… Maison Martin Margiela’s first hotel interior, La Maison Champs Élysées. The minimal, yet sophisticated and offbeat décor sets the stage for a show of romance. Seventeen rooms and suites belong to the Couture Collection, and are decorated with a whimsical touch that plays with proportion and perception. Every space feels surreal, with each room different than the next. Even in the newly opened Blind Bar and at the restaurant, La Table du 8, the chairs appear to be floating above the concrete floor, while oversized moldings and pretend doors add to the illusion. Here, romantic candlelight dinners are only enhanced by the exquisite, seasonal fare and fine selection of French wines. La Maison is just steps away from the Seine and numerous landmarks, ideal for a moonlight stroll with that special someone.

So get on it… and wear this crisp fragrance by our friends at Maison Martin Margiela while you’re at it!

Untitled by Maison Martin Margiela

Untitled by Maison Martin Margiela

Winter Specials… In Style

You should be able to tell by now that Design Hotels are our jam. What can we say? We like to travel in style. And, even if we’re looking for a steal, it’s the little touches of style that make us feel chic and in-the-know. So, while the gentle breezes of summer change to the bone-chilling winds of winter, this means getting yourself to the mountains faster than one can say Kitzbüheler Horn or flying south or east to warmer climes, Design Hotels™ has both fantastic properties to choose from as well as great deals to make the holidays sweeter. You can choose to extend your stay in the 3-for-2 nights or 7-for-5 nights deals; treat yourself to a complimentary upgrade or get value with discounted rates. Savor the holiday spirit in one of Europe’s grandest capitals with Hotel Sezz Paris, a renovated Art Nouveau building by celebrated French designer Christophe Pillet or enjoy winter’s bounty at The Cambrian with the best slopes just outside the door, a Finnish sauna and spa treatments for recuperation and authentic regional cuisine at the restaurant.

Luna2 Private Hotel - Bali

Luna2 Private Hotel – Bali

Skip over to the intimate five-room Luna2 Private Hotel in Bali to experience Asian hospitality at its best, and get that enviable winter tan. The easiest way is to blindfold yourself and pick a point on the map.

The four different options are:

–  3 for 2: one complimentary overnight stay (minimum length of stay three nights)
–  7 for 5: two complimentary overnight stays (minimum length of stay seven nights)
–  Upgrade: free upgrade to the next available room category (minimum length of stay two nights)
–  Value: save up to 14 percent off the best available rate (minimum length of stay two nights)
Design Hotels™ Winter Specials
October 29, 2012 – March 17, 2013

Fall in Paris: Crème-de-la-crème Shopping Itineraries

Christian Lacroix designed rooms at Petit Moulin

Christian Lacroix designed rooms at Petit Moulin

Fall in Paris means sunny days, cool breezes, and, of course, Fashion Week.  For those who have caught the French style bug (but want to avoid the hubbub of Fashion Week), have a look at the new crème-de-la-crème shopping itineraries offered by Le Pavillon de la Reine, Hôtel du Petit Moulin, and Le Pavillon des Lettres.

Hôtel du Petit Moulin’s Ooh Là Là Vintage Fashion Masterclass: Long for the Paris of yesteryear? This experience evokes a bygone era with custom-made vintage clothing matched by decadent champagne tea service. Ooh Là Là Vintage, a top purveyor of retro fashion, first consults with guests to pinpoint their favorite vintage looks. Then, following a fitting and dressed in their chosen attire, guests enjoy a grand afternoon tea. And for true haute-couture enthusiasts, sister company Madame Tra La La is on hand to custom-design vintage pieces to be taken home as a souvenir.

Rates: From €335* per night (minimum stay of two nights), including daily breakfast

Le Pavillon de la Reine

Le Pavillon de la Reine

Le Pavillon de la Reine’s Le Marais Hip Tour: This guided tour strolls through one of Paris’s most historic districts, which today features world-class clothing boutiques such as APC, Surface to Air, and Vanessa Bruno. Visit the must-see fashion temple and art installation L’Eclaireur en route to Rue des Francs-Bourgeois for accessory shopping, all followed by afternoon tea on the hotel’s sunny terrace.

RatesFrom €535 per night (minimum stay of two nights), including daily breakfast


Le Pavillon des Lettres

Le Pavillon des Lettres Printemps Personal Shopper Experience: Paris’s famed “literary” hotel revamps the typical spending spree with a fashion-centric experience at the city’s premier department store, Printemps. With the help of a seasoned personal shopper, guests wander among some of the world’s finest handbags, belts, scarves, and jewelry in a room the size of two football fields.

Rates: From €595 per night (minimum stay of two nights), including daily breakfast

*Price excludes the cost of any custom-made clothing item(s) by Madame Tra La La.

For more information:

Hôtel du Petit Moulin:

Le Pavillon de la Reine:

Le Pavillon des Lettres:

Looking for a lovely, but inexpensive apartment in Paris? Who isn’t?

A Modern Apartment Rental – Paris

Looking for an apartment rental in Paris, but also desire a bit of personalized service? Let’s face it, current economic circumstances reinforce the necessity to make travel budgets stretch as comfortably far as possible.  That’s where comes on the scene. Already a respected player in the UK and Europe for short-term apartment rentals in Paris, they’re backed by an established apartment management company, with comfortable, well-located accommodations at below-hotel rates. A daunting task for any traveler.
We’re big fans of renting flats, but sometimes it can be risky directly dealing with owners, or, it can result in last-minute disappointment.  Likewise there is no continuity in experience (cleanliness, quality) from one location to another. In response, ApartmentParis has created an alternative solution positioned between these two extremes. Even though it is not a hotel, clients are guaranteed hotel standard services  such as decoration and furniture suited to the travellers’ needs, wifi access, housekeeping service, fresh sheets and linens.
Check out the view through the window!

Check out the view through the window!

While each apartment can be adapted to the traveller’s needs, they all come with a basic service: sheets, linens, cable & satellite TV, high bandwith internet and wifi. Prices start at… and here’s where we love it!

Around $75 night for a studio apartment in off-season.
ApartmentParis manages more than 100 apartments that can accommodate from two to eight people, perfect for single travellers, couple or families.  Business travellers can also benefit from apartments located close to the main Paris train stations. All flats are located near tourist attractions such as the Louvre, Eiffel Tower, the Champs-Élysées, Montmartre, and in charming neighborhoods like the Marais,  Buttes Chaumont,  Canal Saint Martin…
A bilingual (French/English) call centre is also available to assist travelers with their plans. So, in a nutshell, their positioning between a hotel and person-to-person rental service, combined with competitive prices and the flexibility of ApartmentParis’ flats, adds an extra dimension of comfort (economic and physical) to your Paris travel plans.

A Girl’s Guide to Paris

Picture Yourself on the Seine...

For the ladies, all the ladies, loudah now, help me out… a ‘come on, all the ladies, let’s talk about Paris… and the New York-based! They’ve launched a new travel club designed to bring savings, insider tips and on-the-ground assistance to Paris visitors. Merci, ladies. The Girls Guide to Paris site features 4,000 pages (yes, 4,000!) of fun ideas, services and insider-tips for shopping, dining, and visiting Paris. Among its scores of tips and suggestions not found in other guides, the site provides times of the year when Hermès holds its rare sale on its signature scarves. Cause that’s mandatory, non? Optional paid levels also provide major discounts on hotels, spas, apartment rentals and more, along with VIP access and in-Paris concierge assistance. And The Girls Guide Concierge… they’re able to create special experiences not available to the average Paris traveler, such as shutting down a store for an exclusive shopping experience or arranging helicopter service for private dinner at a chateau. The site’s travel club members can also obtain invitations to exclusive fashion shows, previews at art galleries, film screenings, and private parties. Now we’re talkin’ or, rather, maintenant nous parlons. At least, according to Google translate (sorry, yo hablo espanol pero no hablo Français).

The site also offers a free member newsletter, downloadable walking tours, apps and a weekly radio show.

So check it out, ladies, and let us know what you think!

Take Me to Paris

The Stunning Mandarin Oriental, Paris

What  do you think is one of the most prestigious addresses in Paris? Would it surprise you to learn that it’s one of our favorite hotels, The Mandarin Oriental, Paris?

With the Garnier Opera, the Louvre and the Tuileries Gardens all close by, this week, we wanted to spotlight this beautiful hotel for it’s original and magnificent Art Deco façade because it’s recently undergone an artful transformation complemented by super chic, contemporary interiors.

Making this one of the most glamorous, and truly Parisian experiences in the city,  the hotel’s 138 luxe rooms are some of the largest in Paris, providing all you design-savvy Jauntophiles with elegance, space and light. The design combines Parisian sophistication, with art deco details and, of course, a few oriental touches. Working with the foremost international names in architecture and design, architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte supervised renovation of the building, facade and patio, Sybille de Margerie imagined the interior design and decoration of the rooms, spa and public spaces, and Patrick Jouin and Sanjit Manku lent their talent to the bar and restaurants. The hotel’s vast indoor garden of oriental inspiration (check this masterpiece of indoor/outdoor beauty out!) was created by Wilmotte & Associés, in association with the landscape artists François Neveux and Bernard Rouyer.

Le Renovation!

But they didn’t stop there. Mandarin Oriental, Paris ‘designed to satisfy every gourmet desire’, is also led by Executive Chef and Culinary Director Thierry Marx. Two restaurants, a “live cooking” counter (j’adore), a bar, Cake Shop and Garden offer a variety of different settings and moods where guests can savor a unique experience each time they visit (tres cool).

Sur Mesure par Thierry Marx

This gourmet restaurant was intended as an intimate cocoon for diners.  Its design forms the perfect backdrop for Chef Thierry Marx’s menu that pays particular attention to shapes and colors, textures and temperatures, and is an invitation to experience new sensations. What we like?  Sur Mesure par Thierry Marx offers a choice of menus comprised of nine or 13 dishes to choose from, including classics from the Chef’s repertoire, such as Tomato Iceburg, Soya Risotto, Calf’s Sweetbread Spaghetti and No-Bake Warm Chocolate Cake.

Mandarin Oriental, Paris - Cake Shop

Camélia’s light-filled space and continuation of the landscaped inner garden reflects Thierry Marx’s wish for a menu of simple, instinctive dishes focused on individual ingredients used in French cuisine that are also influenced by Japanese culinary traditions.  For a unique dining experience, guests can choose to sit at the “live cooking” counter in the center of the restaurant which seats seven, or La Table du Jardin which seats six to eight guests. We sure love the “live cooking” experience. Mandarin Oriental, Paris also pays tribute to its location and Saint Honoré – the patron saint of bakers and pastry-makers – with a delicious collection of classic French pâtisseries with a modern twist in their Cake Shop.  These delicacies can be enjoyed at teatime in the Camélia restaurant or the Gallery area of the Lobby, or beautifully wrapped and taken home.

But we can’t forget… Le Spa!

Mandarin Oriental, Paris Spa

The Spa at Mandarin Oriental, Paris

Entirely devoted to well-being and relaxation, the Spa at Mandarin Oriental, Paris offers a holistic experience and sanctuary of soothing, revitalizing experiences that extends over two floors and includes seven Spa Suites of which three are double suites for couples. Covering 1,281 square feet on the first floor, a fully-equipped fitness centre affords a plunging view of the pool.  For outdoor sport, guests can enjoy a morning run in the Tuileries Gardens, one of Paris’ most beautiful parks and just minutes from the hotel.  The Group’s Signature Therapies and product line were specially developed with anti-aging Orchidée Impériale treatments and exceptional facial therapies by Guerlain (one of our personal favorites since the days we used to go through bottles and bottles of Shalimar).

Paris, France: Le Meurice – A Landmark Hotel Reborn

Paris Hotels - Le Meurice LandmarkDepending on your views of life, some say, “You only live once,” but we here at Jaunt Magazine say, “You only live two or three (or maybe four) times.” How else could we pack it all in? We also say, if you’re only going to live once (or twice), your life really hasn’t been complete without a trip to Le Meurice, the grand dame of Parisian landmarks.

In 2007, Philippe Starck came on board to do it up. Modern Parisian at it’s best. He redesigned all common areas, including a complete transformation at Le Dali restaurant (formerly the Winter Garden), without losing the historic significance of this palace hotel. Stark’s new whimsical touches are reminiscent of the surrealist legacy left by the mustached man himself… Salvador Dali, who, over the course of 30 years, visited the famous hotel several times a year.

Paris Hotel Romantic Rooms - Le MeuriceFor the second consecutive year, Le Meurice also presents its Prize for Contemporary Art, highlighting its commitment to promoting young artists on the French scene. The winner of the Prix Meurice will be selected by a jury of arts professionals including the Chairman and Director of the Louvre, Director of the Musée du Jeu de Paume, Artistic Director of FIAC, among others, and announced October 1st, 2009. The Prize includes €10,000 awarded for the artist, and €10,000 for his or her gallery.  Not too shabby, eh? The jury just selected the seven finalists and Le Meurice has recently launched a website and blog around the prize where everyone can view them, their work, leave comments, and vote for their favorites.  If you ask us, we think this is pretty chic (see below).

If that’s not enough, listen to this chocolate extravaganza.  Yannick Alléno, the Head Chef of Le Meurice’s 3 Michelin Star restaurant, has brought about new meaning to breakfast in Paris.  Looking to create his own version of the French croissant after being inspired by the chocolate aromas and colors at Ladurée, the renowned Parisian café and pastry shop, Alléno researched different types and textures of cocoa bean and decided to re-interpret the French art of “viennoiserie.”

Chef Alleno Choc-allenoThe Choc’Alléno pain au chocolat and croissant is an all chocolate delight: the dough is made with chocolate and added cocoa beans to enhance the flavor. Complete that with a hot chocolate selected by Head Sommelier Nicolas Rebut, and of course, chocolate chip butter, and… Viola! Chocolat fantasy. Available in all Ladurée boutiques and breakfast at Le Meurice.  But wait… there’s more! For lunch, Chef Alléno has added a brand spankin’ new ‘Terroir Parisien’ lunch menu.  He’s lovingly re-envisioned a traditional Parisian menu using exceptional products from in and around the city, including honey from beehives set atop the Paris Opera.

At €78 for a 3-course meal, guests now have the option to experience the Michelin Three-Star chef’s menu at a much reduced price.

For those with kiddies, check out the new Happy Meurice Family Package timed to coincide with the opening of Musique en Jouets at the Musée des Arts Decoratifs, the package includes entrée to the exhibition’s fascinating musical toys, one night in a guest room or suite at Le Meurice; VIP children’s welcome and goody bag; an adorable Nabaztag rabbit per child; and continental breakfast and children’s tea time menu. Families can also unwind while racing the hotel’s custom-made sailboats on the burbling waters of Jardin des Tuileries, located nearby. The exhibition and the Happy Family package runs through November 8, 2009… so get on it.

You only live once (or twice or three times)!

Package from €700 (savings up to 30%)