Je t'aime, Paris

by Amanda.Statham

Seeking a romantic getaway? Look no further than Paris, city of lights, love and seriously swanky hotels

Paris is unmatched when it comes to old-school grand hotels that ooze glitz, glamour and the promise of a decadent time. OK, we’re in the middle of the dreaded credit crunch, but who hasn’t dreamt about forgetting about the day job, the kids, the broken boiler, whatever, and splashing some cash on a really outrageous night in a gorgeous hotel? Well, I say go for it! With the Eurostar now taking just over two hours from St Pancras to Gard du Nord, and costing from £59 return, there’s no excuse not to hop on a train and treat yourself and a loved one to a naughty (sorry, romantic) weekend. And if you're looking to book a room with the wow factor, these are the ones to go for...

Le Meurice Hotel
Best room: the Napoleonic Marco Polo Suite
Why? It's an antique and chandelier-filled getaway that’s perfect for romantic trysts and meetings alike. Previous guests include Salvador Dali, who once requested that staff find him a herd of sheep. The concierge today is just as obliging.

Four Seasons George V
Best room: Honeymoon Suite
Why? Paris’s most romantic suite lies on the eighth floor and has an extremely bling white and gold bedroom, white marble bathroom and terrace with incredible views of the Eiffel Tower.

Ritz Paris
Best room: Coco Chanel Suite
Why? There are lots of swish suites to chose from here, including the Elton John and Hemingway, but the Coco Chanel Suite, with its two bedrooms, sitting room and Jacuzzi is the most stylish. The world’s most famous fashion designer loved it so much she made it her home.

Hotel de Banville
Best room: Amelie
Why? The incredible views: you can have breakfast on the balcony against a backdrop of rooftops, the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe.

Hotel Plaza Athenee
Best room: The Royal Suite
Why? It's the most sumptuous suite in town, and one of the largest, at 450 square metres. Everything about this fifth-floor apartment is jaw-dropping, from the views of the Eiffel Tower and Avenue Montaigne to the curtains embroidered with wire made of three types of gold.

Ones to watch

The trendy Murano Resort Paris has opened the doors to its new honeymoon suite, which comes complete with a vast circular bed. The hotel has also opened two suites with private pools (a first in Paris) and a state-of-the-art gym.

Meanwhile, Oscar Wilde’s old haunt, L'Hotel, on the left bank, underwent a multimillion-pound investment after being bought by the team behind gorgeous Cowley Manor in the Cotswolds. Features include a swimming pool in the converted cellar and interior design by Jacques Garcia.


Travel editor of Cosmopolitan and You & Your Wedding magazines, plus freelancer for various national newspapers and magazines. Author of the Brit's Guide to New York and The Globetrotter's Guide (out in May 09); keen photographer and addicted to travel. Aside from roaming the planet, I love cocktails, surfing, sunshine, reading and flip-flops. Favourite places? It's soooo hard to whittle it down. My perfect morning would be waking up to sunshine and the call to prayer in Marrakech before having breakfast on Riad Tarabel's rooftop, with views of the whole city. Lunch would be a long and lazy affair sitting with friends at the huge al fresco table at Villa Fontelunga in Tuscany, while an afternoon surfing at Hana in Maui or Florianopolis in Brazil would be hard to beat. For sundowners, it has to be a gin & tonic on an African safari, and for a night out, New York, New York, or Jamaica's remote Pelican Reef bar. Built by owner Floyd from mangrove sticks, it lies on a sand bank one-mile offshore from Treasure Beach, can only be reached by boat, and is the coolest bar on the planet.