Hotel in Paris. A jewel case in the last bit of historic Montmartre scrubland, nestled between the famous Avenue Junot and Rue Lepic, this vast Directorial style house is located in a unique spot. Facing the « Witch’s Rock » this former private home transformed in 2007 into a five-suite, luxury hotel is surrounded by both an exceptional private garden landscaped by the architect and a turn-of-the-century pétanque court.
At the hotel, works of art and collectible objects are an integral part of the suites, lobbies and salons. They are not exposed as in a gallery but rather comprise the elements of the living space.
The Suite on the top floor is the nest of the hotel, accessible by a private interior stairwell. With it’s skylight window, this Suite offers a panoramic view of Paris. Painted Barbie doll eyes are hidden in different parts of the Suite. The traveler feels spied upon by these expressionless eyes. Peering out from two large portraits of Young women by the artist Ntacha Lesuer are more eyes hidden behind strands of haïr.
In the Salon space of this Suite a bathtub reigns as a Napoleon III object while dollhouse furniture peek out from various nooks, as if the scales of sizing had changed. The black and gold striped carpeting resonates like a Dandy’s dressing gown. Cashmire drapes and upholstery and vison bed covering warm lovers united before a chimney fire. Paul Mathieu’s and Mickael Ray’s large armchairs keep guard. The open bathroom can be hidden from spying eyes by a sliding door. One is never quite alone even in one’s intimacy! Here, shower walls tiled in copper ceramic, gilded mirrors and Napoleon III lighting fixtures contribute to the atmosphere…
A sensual and vegetal décor of wondrous color blends into the trees beyond the Windows of the room. The carpeting is earthen-colored and the velvet drapes an immaculate white. Sixties style furnishings and mirrored surfaces reflect the luminosity of the surroundings. The bathroom, with its enormous windows and venetian mirrors, is also bathed in light. Visitors can soak in an warm, aquatic ambiance.
Heightened by gold-leaf, the design is based on an Asian legend which says that one confides one’s secrets underneath a tree. “A microphone hidden in the wall of the bedroom records the secrets of the travelers while in the salon space the loquacious birds gossip about these same secrets which can be heard via an ear-shaped speaker on the wall.” The fabrics of Japanese inspired silk and the golden and velvet couches contribute to the fairy-tale setting. An enormous mahogany closet, for clients with multiple shoes and accessories, reigns over the bedroom.
Camel-colored walls, thick camel carpeting and striped “grandfather” drapes, like a décor of a Chabrol film from the 70’s. From an empire desk topped by an accountant’s lamp one can watch someone sleeping in the bed. A display cabinet on the wall is filled with erotic and gourmand objects by Philippe Mayaux. This pièce delicately disturbs the classic ambiance of the room. On the opposite wall, another display cabinet is open to clients.
“People arrive at a hotel from all over the world, carrying exotic objects culled from everywhere. In this Suite, the traveler can leave a trace, an imprint of his passage, a souvenir… as so many trinkets brought back from travels and which perfectly incarnate the time/space of the voyage.”The entirely marble bathroom equipped with a steam-room (hammam) is of an absolute sobriety.
An ambiance of greys and blacks evokes the world of haberdashery. The individual shines through by virtue of his absence in this suite. The poems of Olivier Saillard, printed on paper transformed into wood, hang from lamps, bedposts, armchairs and the attached price tags render commercial value obsolete by replacing cost figures with short poems.
A slender valet chair allowing the visitor to expose his jacket and a hat-rack transform the bedroom into a dressing chamber where one can toss oneself off like some shirt slung across an armrest.
Dior-grey carpeting spreading out like a flannel lake, long drapes tailored in the same tones, tennis striped materials all contribute to the ambient upholstered style. “To dress the walls behind the poems which are like business cards a previous tenant may have left in passing. To make possible the spontaneous exposure of each passer-by’s articles of clothing, a sort of mini-biography of the self-transported from place to place…”
For the central bathroom situated between the bedroom and the salon. A glass cage designed by the architect Mathieu Paillard separates the spaces. The black tiles remind one of the 50’s and porcelain light fixtures create a luminary setting as in a black and white film of this era. The sink and counters are of one single block of marble.