The Fabulous Palace Hotels of France
Without doubt, a luxury tour of France has something special to offer the discerning traveler. Though there are many excellent, even legendary, 5-star hotels, France has a further honor that can be bestowed on a hotel – the Palace designation.
This is the highest award that can be given and it is handed out rarely. Only 24 hotels across the whole country meet the standard of excellence required to merit the Palace title. The French Ministry of Tourism created the award in 2010 and is responsible for the rigorous verification process that decides which establishment gets to join the elite list of Palace Hotels.
All Palace Hotels are 5-star establishments, but not all 5-star hotels are Palace Hotels.
What sets this select group apart is not completely definable. Certainly, they must have a valet and multilingual staff, rooms of certain dimensions and luxury spa on the premises – but these are attributes shared by many 5 star establishments.
There is a further expectation that the hotel will be quintessentially French, that it is culturally significant, that it is a standard bearer for French elegance, and that the premises themselves are exceptional.
While it is certain that the best way to understand what sets a Palace Hotel apart is to stay in one, Christian Mantei, CEO of Atout France, the France Tourism Development Agency describes the attributes of Palace Hotels as “an expression of French excellence in the realm of hospitality and art of living, while embodying the diversity of France”.
Le Royal Monceau in Paris
What sets this palace apart is its artistic and modern aesthetic. Its atmosphere is elegant and chic, with a truly sophisticated air lingering in each room. One of Le Royal Monceau’s most unique features is its private movie theater. This palace is also home to over 300 works of contemporary art and offers cultural workshops for children.
The spa feels like the setting of a futuristic fairy tale, with its clean lines and minimalist color-scheme. The services available at the spa are oriented towards whole-body wellness with a specialization in skin care.
In addition, Le Royal Monceau is the perfect place to wine and dine during your stay in Paris. The property is complete with three restaurants and one top of the line bar.
Le Royal Monceau Michelin Restaurant: Il Carpaccio
Hôtel Les Airelles, Courchevel in the French Alps
This French palace is rich with rustic mountain charm. It’s a cozy, yet luxurious accommodation for winter getaways much beloved by the skiing fraternity. Located in Courchevel, Hôtel Les Airelles offers exquisite views of the French Alps. For a truly upscale experience, guests can reserve an exclusive private penthouse. Unique to Hôtel Les Airelles is its cigar lounge that doubles as a bar. The property also offers three upscale dining options. The dining experience at this palace is curated by the world-class chef, Pierre Gagnaire.
If you are a parent then you’ll enjoy spending the afternoon with your kids at the Kingdom of Children. It has everything to offer, including a play area, refreshments, an arcade, and even dog sledding. While the little ones are being professionally entertained and cared for, parents can relax and enjoy the many amenities of the spa center.
Les Airelles Michelin Restaurant – Pierre Gagnaire pour Les Airelles
Le Château de La Messardière in Saint Tropez
Le Château de La Messardière is an exquisite 19th-century palace located near the French Riviera. The property includes fine dining, a private art gallery, spa, fitness room, and even a bird sanctuary. The majestic property is home to weddings, retreats, and business seminars. Reception catering is available, with gourmet menus to choose from. Enjoy fine French cuisine in elegance at Le Château de La Messardière. The palace is situated on the mountainside and overlooks nearby beautiful beaches. In addition to the exquisite views, the palace itself is exceptional for its preserved 19th-century architecture. Each room embodies the character of the past due to the immaculate preservation of the property throughout the years.
La Réserve Paris in Paris
The palace combines the best of traditional and contemporary design elements to create an exquisite atmosphere for guests. This charming 19th-century building is located near Paris’s most prized attractions, including the Eiffel Tower and the Pantheon making it an ideal base for architectural and cultural tours of the city.
This urban palace is fit for royalty with its rich velvet drapery and perfectly preserved antique furniture. The property is equipped with a variety of room and suite options, including the upscale Grand Palais suite. This Parisian apartment is decorated in traditional French art and Napoleon style furniture.
The suite includes lounging spaces and dressing rooms. It even has its own wine cellar stocked with a vintage selection. Enjoy a soak in the tub while viewing of the Eifel tower in the suite’s marble bathroom.
La Réserve Paris – Le Gabriel
La Bastide de Gordes in Luberon
Situated upon the rocky slopes of the Luberon mountains, La Bastide de Gordes possesses the appearance of a fairytale castle that you’ve only dreamt of. The palace offers stunning views of Southern France and the Luberon mountain. Simply put, La Bastide de Gordes is nothing short of picturesque and romantic.
The rustic charm of the La Maison De Constance will make feel as if you never want to leave, and with all the palace has to offer you won’t need to leave. The property is equipped with a variety of suites to accommodate all tastes and needs. Given the scenic surroundings, La Bastide de Gordes is a popular location for elite weddings and receptions. It also makes an excellent location for retreats, as it offers many activities for young and old alike.
During their stay, guests can enjoy a variety of amenities on the property. Sisley Spa provides the opportunity for guests to melt away stress during an outdoor massage or by relaxing in the sauna. In addition, kids can enjoy their stay lounging at the Kingdom of Children which is equipped with an outdoor theatre, swimming pool, arcade, and catering. Parents can slip away to enjoy a 5-star meal and cocktails in the property’s restaurant and bar. La Bastide de Gordes is a great getaway that truly has something to entertain all of its guests.
La Bastide de Gordes Michelin Restaurant – Pèir