< FRANCE | PARIS: Hôtel du Louvre, a Hyatt Hotel
In 1855 the city has been totally transformed by the Prefect, Baron Haussmann. The dark and squalid streets that once surrounded the Louvre have been replaced by wide avenues. The Rue de Rivoli has just been completed. The Emperor recently launched the new Opéra project, as well as the avenue which will be leading towards it. Industrial France is in motion and its influence is spreading. Everyone is getting ready for the Universal Exhibitions of 1855 and 1867, as well as for the visitors expected to come from the whole world. A number of “Grand Hotels” will then be built including – at Napoleon III’s request – the ‘Grand Hotel du Louvre”, the first of them all!
Boasting 700 rooms featuring unheard-of comfort, with lifts and wide staircases, this “Grand Hotel du Louvre” was one of the most modern hotels of its time. It counted
no less than 1,250 employees working daily, while countless services were provided to guests for the first time: omnibus transport to and from the train stations, guides,
interpreters, information desk and foreign exchange bureau... For its part, the restaurant also acquired an international reputation, because – on top of regional fare – it
was the first to offer the most famous dishes from a variety of countries!
In 1887, the hotel was relocated to the other side of the Place du Palais Royal – its current location – in order to make more space for the Grands Magasins du Louvre (currently the Antiquarian’s Louvre). With henceforth 177 guest rooms, the Hotel du Louvre became one of Paris’ most charming hotels. Its unique ambiance would indeed inspire Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to make his most famous character stay there as a guest: Sherlock Holmes!
At the end of 1897, Camille Pissarro, one of the earliest masters of impressionism, checked in at the Hotel du Louvre for several months. During his stay he painted “la Place du Théâtre Français”, “la Rue Saint-Honoré” and “l’Avenue de l’Opéra”, all at different seasons. The room he was staying in still bears his name, and has been refurbished into a superb Presidential Suite...
As much as it is a historical address, the Hotel du Louvre has always managed – since its inception – to remain at the forefront of progress. To this day it remains, and for a long time to come, a most favoured holiday location for anyone keen on discovering the City of Light.
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