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A night in Paris

Traveling as a designer can be the ultimate source of inspiration.  Seeing the history, cultural influences and varied materials opens possibilities we’d not considered.  I always come home feeling a renewed excitement.  I was recently in London and with my fella, Asad during his UK tour with the Just For Laughs Festival.   With a three day break from the show, I booked us a quick flight to Paris.  A city I love

I’ve experienced Paris as a tourist on previous visits and this time I wanted to truly live it as a Parisian would.  For me that meant staying somewhere with a true modern French style, eating the contemporary take on classic French cuisine.

My hotel research had us happen upon a new boutique hotel, so new in fact it doesn’t officially open to the public until September 2016.

Le Narcisse Blanc hotel-spa,  is the quintessence of luxury nestling between the Eiffel Tower and Les Invalides,is close to the storied banks of the Seine, with some of the most majestic buildings in Paris at its feet. The very recently inaugurated 5-star hotel and spa casts its benign gaze over the city from its terraces and broad windows. Inside, an aura vibrant with history, a true home-from-home for sampling the very best of the unique Paris lifestyle and philosophy.

Savour the height of glamour clothed in the finest fabrics, from tweed to velvet, duchesse satin, burnout, silk faille, and dappled rugs, all subtly combined in a couture mix of restful grey-beige, cream, champagne, sand, ash, and powdered rose.

Melissa Davis

The owners turned to designers Laurent & Laurence, working with interior decorators Thierry Martin and Thibaut Fron, to bring Le Narcisse Blanc hotel-spa to full bloom. The quartet has created 37 spacious bedrooms, including seven suites, some with fireplaces, others giving on to their own terrace garden, or offering the rare pleasure of breathtaking views of the City of Light.  We were lucky enough to experience one of the terrace suites, a view of the Eiffle tower from the bedroom, and private terrace off the washroom overlooking the city proper. All rooms and suites are furnished with a distinctive, uncluttered classism in refined colour schemes reflecting an enlightened taste: here an armchair with distinctive Art Nouveau curves, there a Deco arabesque or the contemporary lines of a brass table lamp.

Every detail is impeccably considered from the delicate pearl moulding, to the hand painted narcissi. All is perfect harmony, everything is in the detail. There is not a hint of ostentation. Such perfect, cultivated luxury suffices unto itself.  A true master class in understated elegance and luxury.

We sought an escape, inspiration and unique experience.  From the enchanted Spa with its own 13-metre swim-in-place pool, hydrotherapy massage jets, and elegant

ivory poolside loungers.  This discrete private space had me dreaming up new spa washroom designs and ways to incorporate the hammam and sauna in my client’s homes.

Travel is a luxury for most of us, with these getaways far too infrequent.  I lived a charmed few weeks in Europe, and feel awash with inspiration and a true love of Parisian design and lifestyle.  If you have opportunity, I cannot recommend Le Narcisse Blanc enough.  Bonne nuit mon cher ami et doux rêves.

About the Author: Melissa Davis is a Toronto-based interior designer

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