Cheval Blanc, the luxury hotel arm of Louis Vuitton, will open Cheval Blanc Samaritaine Paris in 2018, on the banks of the Seine. Given how much my clients and I have enjoyed stays at Cheval Blanc Randheli, our favorite luxury resort in the Maldives, Cheval Blanc Samaritaine Paris will be a highly anticipated opening, currently slated for the end of 2018.
Cheval Blanc La Samaritaine Location
The original La Samaritaine building was unveiled in 1870, one of the first Paris department stores located right in the heart of the city, on the banks of the Seine, just a 6 minute walk from the Louvre Museum, a few steps to the Pont Neuf, a 10 minute walk to Sainte Chapelle on the Ile de la Cite, and about a 13 min. walk to Notre Dame. This will truly be an excellent location for visitors to Paris who want to be easy walking distance to key landmarks, museums, and even the Left Bank.
Cheval Blanc La Samaritaine Features
The Cheval Blanc La Samaritaine hotel will be very much a boutique property, with an Art Deco facade and just 72 residential-style rooms and suites. Architect and designer Peter Marino will design the interior spaces; he's also designed several Louis Vuitton stores in Paris, Hong Kong, and New York SoHo, as well as private residences in London, Paris, Monaco, Southampton, St. Tropez, Turks & Caicos and elsewhere. He's also working on the new Peninsula London Hotel.
The new Cheval Blanc Paris hotel will feature a gourmet restaurant, contemporary brasserie and a Givenchy Spa. There will also be adjacent offices and shops.
The Cheval Blanc Connection with Louis Vuitton
Louis Vuitton is the better known luxury brand, as not everyone is an oenophile or recognizes that Chateau Cheval Blanc is one of the top Saint Emilion wine producers, one of only a handful of Premier Grand Cru Classe (A) wineries. But those in the know realize that Cheval Blanc's luxury hotels are a fitting brand extension to the premium wines, as Louis Vuitton's entry into experiential luxury.
As Olivier Lefebvre, the head of Cheval Blanc has remarked, the target high net worth clients for Cheval Blanc and other ultra luxury resorts spend significantly on luxury travel, spending that is second only to art. For that reason, the Cheval Blanc emphasis is on quality, not quantity, and design and service decisions are guided by four principles: privacy, craftsmanship, creativity, and hospitality (or as the French say, the “art de recevoir”).
Since I'm not much of a skier, I don't know if/when I'll make it to Cheval Blanc Courchevel, notwithstanding the rave reviews my skiing clients have given it, including its Le 1947 Restaurant, the only 3 Michelin Star restaurant in Courchevel (which doesn't surprise me, given how much we enjoyed its Maldivian counterpart, Le 1947 at Cheval Blanc Randheli).
But Cheval Blanc La Samaritaine will be something of a flagship property for Cheval Blanc, and given that Paris is one of the top luxury hotel cities in the world, I suspect it will be incredible given the stiff competition it has.
If you've stayed at a Cheval Blanc property, which one was it, and what was your experience?
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