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  Hotel Daniel, Paris, France – a Most Romantic Boutique Hotel
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Eurostar – London to Paris, conveniently plops us in the central Gare du Nord. Jumping into a taxi, we are on our way. So far, so slow. The usual city traffic jam, prolongs the anticipation of a long weekend break – a birthday celebration.

An Elegant Retreat, ‘Right’ in the Heart of Paris

Tucked away in the right-bank’s calm and quiet Rue Frédéric Bastiat is the very special, privately owned, luxury boutique Hôtel Daniel – a Relais & Châteaux member. Apart from its aesthetic comfort factor, it offers the convenience of a short stroll to the illustrious Champs-Elysées with its chic shopping, sumptuous restaurants, cinemas, lively bistros and bars. A must for every self-respecting Flashpacker visiting France’s capital.

The Daniel gives the impression of being in a grand private house. Originally a shabby hotel with forty guest rooms, it is now transformed into a deluxe establishment with opulent rooms, the interior décor created by London based designer, Tarfa Salam.

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A warm winter's welcome at the Hotel Daniel
A warm winter's welcome at the Hotel Daniel
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Hotel Daniel Paris Deluxe Room
Hotel Daniel Paris Deluxe Room

A little glint, a little glisten but never a glare. Just how we like it – a lot of style, a little flash. The salon is decked with rich vivid fabrics, damask sofas, beautiful old rugs and artfully placed oriental antiques and Chinoiserie; so emblematic of the ancient journeys of the 18th Century Silk Routes.


There are 26 bedrooms, including 9 suites. The guest rooms are in the classic tradition, whilst the bathrooms are truly modern, the large white towels proudly embossed with the hotel’s insignia. On the sixth floor, an erstwhile student garret is now a bijoux rooftop penthouse.

It’s Never too Late for a Breakfast Date

At the Daniel, all day breakfast allows all night revelers the luxury of sleeping late. There’s also a welcoming table of sweetmeats and fruits temptingly displayed in the salon, ever ready for peckish guests to pluck a grape or suck a toffee with a nutty croquant centre. Even surreptitiously squirrel away a chocolate croissant to snack, whilst standing in line to see the collection of Getrude Stein at the Grand Palais. For Sunday, we take two for the even longer queue at the Musée Dorsay. The last day of the Beauty, Morals and Voluptuousness in the England of Oscar Wilde exhibition.

Scrumptious Tea and Fine Dining

Back to the Daniel hotel for a rare treat – afternoon tea. Colourful macaroons from Ladurée, a dazzling collection of exotic teas and pastries that challenge even the strictest dieter. The gourmet restaurant is open Mon-Friday. However, an international menu is offered on Saturday and Sunday for hotel clientele only.The friendly multi-lingual staff manage to keep their distance and at the same time are courteous, helpful and efficient; keeping their eye on the needs of the guests.

Monday is shopping day. One of Hôtel Daniel’s regulars, the very stylish Yvon Coty, member of the legendary perfume dynasty, leads us to DÉPÔTVENTELUXE, a discount couture outlet on the right bank. We buy some great spoils, including a very elegant Gucci jacket – a bargain at 180€ and a red cashmere dress.

Fine Food at the Hotel Daniel
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Legendary Paris Brasserie
Legendary Paris Brasserie
‘Left’ turn –We lunch at that old faithful, Brasserie Lipp in the St Germain which never disappoints. Jan 2012 and still the authentic dishes and uniformed waiters call the tune for all that is best in classic French Cuisine.

‘Right’ again and we are strolling down the Rue de Rivoli dipping in and out of the elegant shops, buying this and that – gloves for him, fur hat for her, it’s incredibly cold. So, what better than a stop at one of the most famous tea salons in Paris.

Chocolat chez Angelina – une très Jolie Affaire

Angelina, the buzzy lavish Tea Room in the swanky Rue de Rivoli, serves arguably the best hot chocolate in Europe. Now, there’s a challenge for those who disagree! Mind you, judging by the queues, probably there would be more yeas than nays. Such a treat to sip the rich smooth intense nectar with a snack; really excellent club sandwiches and other French delights including an elegant and tasty Croque Monsieur.

Angelina Tea Room

Back at the hotel for a read and a rest. Later, a game of solitaire in 501 keeps the Birthday Girl’s husband amused while she’s in the shower.

Josephine “Chez Dumonet”

Yes Tonight, Josephine – A Birthday Celebration at the Best Bistro in Paris

We dine at Josephine “Chez Dumonet”; a wonderful vintage 1930's bistro with a fabulous wine-list which nestles modestly in the chic rue du Cherche-Midi on the left bank. Warm artichoke salad with a gentle silky dressing, a delightfully piquant endive salad with Roquefort cheese, perfectly tender boeuf bourguignon with tagliatelles, crisp-skinned duck confit and some spectacular desserts, a millefeuille big enough for three and a Grand Marnier soufflé. Such a joy to dine in a place that serves authentic classic French cuisine that isn't tiny teeny morsels on a huge white plate. And the atmosphere, such fun! . Surprisingly it’s closed on the weekends. Why? Saturday is a family day, the patron tells me. Sunday is sacred….he watches rugby!

The night is young! On we go to enlighten ourselves at Buddha bar and finally a hip-hop at L’Arc – two of the most fashionable hot spots in Paris.

A Fleeting Moment – Not an Intrusion

Early morning – 3am. The silence of this little back street off the rue d’Artois is punctuated by the laughter of joyful drunkards. An unexpected frisson which just adds to the excitement of being in Paris. All husbands become lovers in this romantic and sensual Parisienne hotel.

Hotel Daniel Photo Gallery

Published rack rates are as below but if you visit the Hôtel Daniel website there are usually special seasonal offers.

Room Rates: €350 single – Tax & service included
Double rooms from €420 – Tax & service included
Continental Breakfast €24
America Breakfast €34

Address: 8 rue Frédérik Bastiat - Champs Elysees - 75008 Paris
Tel: 00 33 (0) 1 42 56 17 00


© Philip and Nina Saville, The 2012-15