La Tamise is a delightful four-star boutique hotel squirrelled away in a luxurious, 19th-century hôtel particulier (stately mansion) across from the pea-green lawns of Jardin des Tuileries. Rooms are elegant and comfortable, and service is black jacketed and impeccable.
Footsteps from the Louvre and neighbouring Jardin des Tuileries, on a very quiet side street. Rue Saint-Honoré and the so-called Golden Triangle, with its bevy of world-famous fashion designers, are also right next door. Tuileries (line 1) is the closest metro station.
Style & character
Guests are wrapped in the timeless, old-world elegance of a historic Parisian mansion from the moment they set foot in the intimate entrance hall with original cement-tiled patterned floor restored by Italy’s Salvatore Abramo. Built between 1840 and 1850, the house belonged first to the Noailles family and became a hotel in 1878.
British aristocrats dropped by on their grand tour of Europe and all too soon, La Tamise was a fashionable address to stay overnight at when in Paris, darling. Models and photographers from fashion houses on nearby rue Saint-Honoré followed in the 1970s, Twiggy included. To get a real sense of place, I strongly recommend a slow walk up the gorgeous original staircase to the fifth floor – its restoration is exquisite. La Tamise belongs to the exclusive Esprit de France hotel collection.
Service & facilities
Exemplary. Just as one would expect of one’s butler at home, with a definite slant towards the business traveller: there is a business corner with computer and printer, and guests can rent a pocket Wi-Fi set at reception to ensure internet access when out and about in the city. Find international and French newspapers in the lobby, and don’t hesitate to use the concierge service for booking theatre tickets, taxi reservations et al.
- Room service
Only the finest fabrics and fittings are used in the 19 rooms, each dressed in their Sunday best of velvet, tweed and wool. Colours schemes are soft and sophisticated, with soothing taupe and aubergine, cream and chocolate, setting off period furnishings to perfection. Sound-proofing is naturally excellent, but request a room overlooking the interior courtyard anyway. Bathrooms are marble, with plush bathrobes and Sothys welcome products.
Food & drink
Lunch (€25/£20), afternoon tea (€15/£11.50) and dinner (mains €18/£14) are served in the upmarket restaurant with fireplace and original stained glass windows. French cuisine is refined and seasonal – dishes such as honey-sweetened beef stew, truffle risotto and duck shepherd’s pie salad enjoy some excellent wine pairings. End on a sweet high with one of the finest Saint Honoré or Paris-Brest pastries in Paris by Philippe Conticini from Patisserie des Rêves.
Chocoholics, do not leave Paris without sampling the legendary hot chocolate and signature Mont Blanc cake at Angelina, a tea room dating to 1903 a few doors down on rue de Rivoli.
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