Hôtel Vernet, Paris
On its 100-year anniversary, originally built under the French civic planning of Georges-Eugène Haussmann, the historic Hôtel Vernet hotel has undergone a significant renovation by interior designer François Champsaur and it’s an absolute work of art.
Taking the old building, which sits between the Place de l’Etoile (Charles de Gaulle) and the prestigious Golden Triangle district, the French designer has created a space of elegance and artistry, boasting in equal measure the modern aesthetic and French sophistication. It’s a combination that, while not new to the designer having worked on various luxurious hotels and a number of homes of art collectors’, is done with great skill. Bold colours are used in a way that complement perfectly the decadence of rich materials while energetic patterns sit comfortably with fine lines.
Each detail – whether it be furniture or fittings, paint colours or floors – speaks somehow to both modern art and French elegance at once. Art in the obvious sense, that is, paintings, are not only on the walls but also find expression on the floors in the form of simply fabulous rugs, becoming art works in themselves, and are found also on the ceilings (with fresco by French visual artist Jean-Michel Alberola commissioned). The furniture is wholly modern with its minimal form but elegant in material and the choice of colours are bright yet not gaudy, contemporary while also oozing class. The copper bar feels fresh but sleek, while marble table-tops oscillate between simple geometric shapes and sinuous curves which defy their very materiality. Of course, we cannot forget the monumental stained glass dome. Designed by Gustave Eiffel, the impressive glasswork is certainly a generous nod to French workmanship and classic design, but, as it hovers over a very minimal dining area, nestles itself into the modern tone.
All in all, the Hotel Vernet blends two distinct eras and aesthetics together beautifully, paying respect to both and being something truly unique in its own right.