Plaza Athenee Turns 100

Sleep deprived after our overseas flight into Paris, my family stepped under the signature red awning into the lobby of the Plaza Athenee and exhaustion was immediately replaced with a deep sense of comfort and relaxation. It wasn’t only the doorman who carried in your luggage.  No, it was the man behind the reception desk stating that our room was already available at this early hour, and the nearby concierge, standing at a desk twice as large as the reception area, already helping us with dinner reservations and museum passes. Then a woman escorted us upstairs to our room, a stately suite, where the antique rugs and furniture blended with the latest technology like flatscreen televisions. We opened up the French country windows to see a garden box planted with flowers. To our right was the Eiffel Tower standing in all its glory. Everything was bliss.

When the Plaza Athenee opened its doors on April 20, 1913, it quickly became the place to be for the Parisian personalities of the day. Maurice Chevalier, Josephine Baker and Rudolph Valentino made the crimson-trimmed palace their Parisian hot spot of choice. So did the fashion icon Christian Dior, who became so infatuated with the hotel, he opened his new boutique on the same street. Luminaries kept coming: Grace Kelly, Gary Cooper, Jackie Kennedy, the Vanderbilts, the Rockefellers, and more. As it celebrates its 100th birthday, the hotel just gets better with age. You can read my full review of the property at FamilyVactionCritic