A popular choice among film stars and singers, Le Fouquet’s is more than a luxury hotel: it’s iconic.
When it comes to choosing a hotel, Paris really leaves us spoilt for choices. New and cool hotels open every month and, of course, there are the luxurious hotels that have been there for years. As in, yes, the ones we all stare at on our Instagram feeds.
So how do you wade through all the options on offer to find somewhere truly special to spend a weekend in the French capital? Opt for iconic.
Le Fouquet’s is one of those places we see in magazines and we know exactly where they are. The hotel has graced the pavement of one of the most famous streets in the world, the Champs Elysées, since 1899 and it has been the very glamorous hub for film stars, footballers and politicians alike (fun fact, Nicolas Sarközy partied at Le Fouquet’s after his victory in 2007).
In March 2019, though, the historical terrace of the restaurant was vandalised and burnt down during a yellow vest protest. Thankfully, Le Fouquet’s restaurant is reopening the 14 July (aka French National Day) to ensure its clients will have the best view on the parade.
All in all, it’s the perfect time to book your stay.
Situated on the Champs Elysées, overlooking the Arc de Triomphe, Le Fouquet’s location is definitely unbeatable. The avenue is famous for its shops, but there is much more to see around the fancy Parisian 8th district.
First of all, the Arc de Triomphe. The structure is beautiful from the outside but it’s really worth preparing your visit and climb on top of the monument. The pro tip? Well, the Arc is open until quite late at night (some days until 11.30pm), so try to get there for sunset if you want a truly spectacular view.
For a bit of French fun, make sure you book a ticket for the Lido de Paris, one of the most incredible cabaret spectacles in town. Even if you think cabaret is not your cup of tea, a night at the Lido is an immersion in a new (more sparkly and happy) world, full of incredibly beautiful women, of course. The show changes every seven years and its current one, Paris Merveilles (created in 2015), involves amazing dancing, singing and even ice-skating. Yes, you read that right: ice-skating.
Feeling flush? Minutes from the hotel is Artcurial, the international (but very Parisian) auction house. Here, you might be able to get your hands on a vintage Hermès or on a beautiful work of art – just be sure to keep an empty suitcase to hand for all your new belongings.
For the foodies, Paris is the best place to indulge in a Michelin-starred experience. Sat within walking distance of Le Fouquet’s, Le Clarence is a two-Michelin star restaurant headed by chef Christophe Pelé. In his hands, the staples of French cuisine get a modern makeover for a meal that becomes a real experience. A must visit for a once in a lifetime celebration.
Crystal, gold and velvet, Le Fouquet’s’ lobby might be the bougiest one you can find in Paris.
Entering the hotel is like being in a modern belle époque, where the opulence of the old days has been reworked to fit the modern traveler, without losing its sparkle. Being in the lobby already feels like a treat.
The elegance of the lobby and the restaurants is translated to the rooms with golden accents and a warm, sleek look.
Think high ceilings, big comfortable beds, marble bathrooms and an incredible view over the most famous avenue in the world.
Renovated in 2017, the spa Diane Barrière is a real oasis in the middle of the hustle and bustle of busy Paris. The indoor pool in incredible and a real rarity in a big city, where even the most luxurious hotels don’t usually have swimming facilities.
But the pool is not the only feature of the spa to enjoy: there’s also the aqua circuit, steam room, sauna and, of course, the Kos Paris range of treatments, too.
Imagine enjoying a relaxing hydro-massage, just beneath the Champs Elysées – now, that’s an incredible ‘upside-down’.
Food & Drinks
Le Fouquet’s Paris
The main restaurant in Le Fouquet’s is a real Parisian icon. Perfectly located at the corner of avenue George V and the Champs-Elysées, with two amazing terraces overlooking the busy streets, the restaurant is perfect if you want to do some glamorous people watching while enjoying a glass of delicious French wine.
Both a restaurant and a bar, Le Joy is the second restaurant within the hotel. Under a dome covered in illustrated flowers, green and purple velvet sofas are found surrounded by a library, overlooking a gorgeous terrace. Le Joy is the best option if you are planning on having a lunch (or dinner) al fresco.
Le Marta Paris
Behind a secret door that looks like a library is Le Marta, the cocktail bar that turns into a club at night time.
Definitely one of the new hot spots in the City of Lights, Le Marta’s rooftop is the coolest place to go to have a drink and some tapas at sunset, overlooking the famous Parisian roofs. After midnight, the party continues inside where a DJ gets people moving until 3am.
How to get to Le Fouquet’s
Getting to Le Fouquet’s couldn’t be easier: the metro station Georges V is right next to the hotel and a few others are around the area.
If you arrive by train and you are feeling sporty, you can walk for a little less than an hour. If you are feeling lazy, just flag down one of the dozens of taxis always waiting outside the station. With public transport, you can walk to Barbès-Rochechouart station (5 minutes from Gare du Nord) and take the line 2 to Charles De Gaulle-Étoile, straight to the hotel. If you don’t want to get out of Gare du Nord, you can take the RER B to Châtelet-Les Halles and then the metro line 1 to Georges V (but it will take the exact same amount of time).
If you decide to fly to Paris, from Charles de Gaulle airport, take the RER B to Châtelet-Les Halles, and the RER A to Charles De Gaulle-Étoile. If you arrive at Orly airport, take the OrlyVal to Antony, the RER B to Châtelet-Les Halles, and the RER A to Charles De Gaulle-Étoile.
When you visit Le Fouquet’s, make sure you save a few hours to spend in the spa: it’s an incredibly relaxing space, amazing to switch off and have a great start to your holiday.
Check the RATP website before your flight. Sometimes the train lines get closed (part of the RER A is closed in August) and it’s better to be prepared.
Paris, like any other big city, has quite the problem with pick-pockets. Be careful when walking on a touristy street like the Champs-Elysées or while you are travelling in packed metro. Leave your passport in your (safe) room.
What to pack
Pictures: Group Barrière / Rodrigo Kugnharski