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The Meurice, a palace haunted by Dali

September 14, 2011
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Located on the high-end rue de Rivoli, within walking distance of the Louvre, the Place Vendome and the Champs Elysees, the Meurice offers a spectacular view on the Tuileries gardens. It opened in 1835, making it one of the oldest hotels in Paris. It first attracted an English clientele. Famous people soon made Meurice one of the hot spots in town. Salvador Dali who was a frequent visitor is known for his eccentric requests: he once asked for a horse to be brought to his room. He also asked for a herd of sheep to shoot at (with blank bullets…). The hotel did not hold any grudges against him and Philippe Stark who was in charge of the hotel renovation a few years ago was greatly inspired by the artist. References to his art are discreet though and easy to miss, as the hotel is famous for its classism. For instance, frosted mirrors are hung in the hotel lobby. You can also find chairs and tables whose legs imitate lady’s shoes. On the contrary, the hotel’s 160 rooms are decorated with infinite elegance in the 18th century style.

The hotel Meurice played an important role during and after World War II. Holes from the gun battles  and bombings that took place during the liberation of Paris can still be found on its facade. At the time, the hotel  was occupied by American forces who were looking for lost soldiers. Once restored, it started attracting elitist customers again. Today, the Meurice, whose symbol is made of two greyhounds, belongs to the Dorchester Collection group. It still attracts a chic clientele from all around the world.

Le Meurice – 228 rue de Rivoli 75001 Paris

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