Top Ten Luxury
Ritz Paris, France

This is the one we’ve really been waiting for. The legendary Ritz Paris is finally re-opening its elegant doors on Place Vendôme in 2016. The restoration has taken longer than anticipated (this one was on our list last year too) but we are convinced it will be worth the wait - with the ultra-talented Thierry W. Despont overseeing interiors how could it be anything but extraordinary? Luxury lovers will be thrilled to know that there are more suites than there are rooms (72 versus 71) which has to be a good sign, including fifteen individually designed prestige suites. 
There is so much history attached to this hotel, one of César Ritz’s most famous. Charlie Chaplin, Sophia Lore, Cole Porter ('even Pekineses at the Ritz do it…') and a host of other rich and aristocratic guests have stayed here, Coco Chanel liked it so much she moved in.  And who can forget Love in the Afternoon filmed at the Ritz with the luminous Audrey Hepburn sashaying down its marble corridors. Of course Bar Hemingway, is named after Ernest for whom apparently the Ritz barman invented the Bloody Mary;  'when I dream of an afterlife in heaven the action always takes place at the Paris Ritz',  said Hemingway. 
The famous bar is one of the centre pieces of the restoration as is the historic Salon Proust. But there are some very 21st century touches too; we love the idea of the retractable roof over the gorgeous gardens terraces. Competition is fierce in the luxury hotel market in Paris so any true five star has to have a sublime spa, Ritz Paris promises one of the best with an indoor pool, modern fitness centre with private training rooms and indulgent treatment rooms while a discreet tunnel available for completely private guest arrivals and departures - spa hair is so unattractive cherie…

Also on the radar: Rosewood’s long awaited refurbishment of Hotel di Crillon, due to be unveiled in 2016 (we hope) www.rosewood.com,
The new French boutique hotel group, EVOK Hotels Collection, opens the 45-room Nijinski in Paris on Avenue de l’Opéra June 2016, www.evokhotels.com
The re-imagining of the iconic La Samaritaine department store into a Cheval Blanc hotel, LVMH now puts the opening at 2018. www.chevalblanc.com


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Ritz Paris, France
 
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