The Peninsula: halfway between tradition, innovation & savoir-faire

Moon River by Xavier Corbero
   The new born Peninsula Paris opened last August and it is the first in Europe ! A couple weeks ago took place the opening party. After looking at pictures and hearing some feedback, it was apparently gigantic ! My turn to discover this place full of history. Indeed, George Gershwin composed “An American in Paris” while his stay in 1928, then it became UNESCO’s headquarter in 1946, it was also where the international center for Minister of Foreign Affairs conferences were taking place at. Welcomed by two giant lions in front of the hotel emphasizing the Chinese heritage of the group, what stroke me was the ability to mix up tradition, innovation and savoir-faire. Through its diversity, everyone can find his preferences. It’s basically different worlds in a common place. Three restaurants, three universes. Very enlightened in The Lobby, whereas the LiLi restaurant is a little subdued at the entrance and reddish inside through the walls while at L’Oiseau Blanc, white and brown are dominating the room.

   The Lobby is so French, yellow-ish, gold, elegant, the place reminds of a ballroom a century ago. It welcomes the afternoon tea time which is so pleasant with someone playing the piano as a background music. Then in a total opposite way, the LiLi restaurant offers Chinese and Cantonese food. The design is a marriage of the French and Chinese operas. What is also very impressive was the kind of big boards right after the entrance on the right where an artist cut out pages from Chinese dictionaries in order to create a piece of art (see below), it was mind blowing ! Then, L’Oiseau Blanc on the sixth floor… the must of French cuisine, represented by the biplane of the same name, one of the first that ever tried to cross the Atlantic. The founder was indeed fascinated by aircraft and also has invested into research in order to find the original Oiseau Blanc. How beautiful is the story ? I am definitely a child when it comes to story telling. Each beautiful story is like an instant of peaceful dream. Notice the gorgeous, unbelievable, breath taking view of the ‘lovers table’ situated right in the middle of the restaurant to admire the Eiffel Tower – anecdote : quite a lot of marriage proposals happened here. Alright, my heart is melting now.
   Back to the ground floor, the terrace is very spacious and chill on a sunny day but there is the Bar I really want to try out, fortunately quite soon next time I visit The Peninsula ! The Paris Peace Agreements negotiated by Henri Kissinger to end the Vietnam war were signed in 1973 there as well. And here is a special attention for cigars lovers at the Kléber Lounge, a private room where you can also drink some whisky ! You know what ? While renovating they found out a fresco hidden on the ceiling, how mysterious is that ? Moving on to the second entry which doesn’t exist in any other Peninsula because it is simply very French. It is mostly dedicated to cars – The Peninsula owns a beautiful car collection including two Rolls-Royce, two Mini and ten BMW. Above all, what I’m in love with is the exceptional Lasvit chandelier in hand blown glass representing a 800 cristal leaves cascade referring to the plane trees that are all along the Kléber avenue.
   Eventually, through its remarkable terraces and gardens on the rooftop offering a panoramic view on the city of light, with its 34 suites including 5 with private gardens among 200 black and white basic and modern rooms (each equipped with interactive numeric tablets to switch on and off the light split on different hues or to open the curtain), its white-uniformed grooms, The Peninsula Paris is different by its uniqueness taking you to a moment of travel inside a palace, through its proper identity expressed by its Asian roots, French location and Middle Eastern background. It’s basically a living place for a tourist or a business man – food, bedroom, well-being such as spa, fitness and swimming pool, leisures like trips to the Château de Versailles or a visit of the Opera Garnier, in-house shops, a soon-coming hair salon.
   It was really an amazing experience to find out about this brand new establishment. I couldn’t be happier to have discovered the LiLi because good memories resurfaced… The table that can host over 10 people around it is just what is the most emblematic characteristic of China. It is said that Chinese people embody harmony and I guess this is why the tables are circular when the European countries have square ones. I am so interested in cultural differences as it is key to understand other habits, other lifestyles, other state of minds. And the only way to make it happen is to travel and to meet the world !

 

The Lobby – Baccarat chandelier
The Lobby – iced jasmin tea
The Lobby
The Lobby
The Lobby
The Lobby – April’s special tea
LiLi – pages of dictionary
LiLi
L’Oiseau Blanc
reproduction of L’Oiseau Blanc
Iris Cantabri top & skirt – Faustine Paris bag
Iris Cantabri top & skirt
Iris Cantabri top & skirt – Faustine Paris bag

 

Iris Cantabri top & skirt – Faustine Paris bag
Find out the Faustine Paris bag here
the Iris Cantabri top here
the Iris Cantabri skirt here
you can use the promo code V3ZQL906 to get 10€ off
The Peninsula Paris
19 Avenue Kléber
75016 Paris
© All Rights Reserved – photo credits cc Anna Tai & Alice Herbaux
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