A chic evening in the French capital

The City of Light shines bright late into the evening! The perfect time to hit the bars of its palatial hotels to have fun, chill out, savour some unique cocktails and cuisine and experience a different side of Paris by night!

HEAD OUT ON THE TOWN: experience the trendiest nightlife Paris has to offer!

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The bar at the Plaza Athénée in Avenue Montaigne, the place to be for the well-connected crowd and haute couture scene, has preserved its sense of space and listed 18th century wood panelling while at the same reinventing itself for the better: its ceiling models the draped wreaths of a dress festooned with a constellation of pin-like lights, while the bar takes on the appearance of a translucent resin catwalk… In the evening, the Plaza’s bar is transformed into the inplace for Parisian nightlife, where the ultra-trendy Y generation rubs shoulders with a more incognito crowd in an atmosphere that is very much “exclusive club” in feel.

Ambience: after-work haute-couture at 6pm, a trendy urban club at night.

A must: the cocktail glasses designed by Thierry Hernandez, the director of the Plaza Athénée bar, which he had tailor-made in Murano – unique pieces of hand-blown glass which appear identical in size whatever cocktail you order (small, medium or large).

Timeless, yet with a nod to contemporary art, Le Bar du Bristol brings to mind a traditional British club with its wood panelling, Versailles oak flooring and monumental Aubusson tapestry. This classic look has been reinforced by its leopard-print stools, pendant chandeliers and large video screen behind the bar. It is to this refined and hushed setting that Paris’ chic and cosmopolitan Faubourg Saint-Honoré clientele head on Friday and Saturday nights for lively DJ-hosted evenings, or alternatively on Thursday evenings, when Le Bar du Bristol hosts its “live DJ Mix”, transforming it into the most exclusive after-work venue in the French capital.

Ambience: chic yet chilled later in the evening, the perfect backdrop for exclusive cocktails designed by head barman Maxime Hoerth (“Meilleur Ouvrier de France 2011”) and sweet and savoury tapas created by Eric Frechon, Le Bristol’s three-star Michelin chef.

A must: the signature tea-infused So British cocktail is served in a special glass with a handle, just like a traditional “cup of tea”.

Just a few steps from Place de l’Étoile and the Arc de Triomphe, the Philippe Starckinspired Bar Long at the Royal Monceau – Raffles Paris is a lively, trendy venue open to the public. Illuminated by vertiginous chandeliers descending from the ceiling and asymmetrical calligraphy-tagged lamps, this is the perfect hideaway for a lively yet relaxed soirée, enhanced by the high table extending out from the bar – the perfect setting to meet and chat with locals and guests alike. Don’t miss Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings with music by the resident DJ and delicately sweet creations by Pierre Hermé, the hotel’s head pastry chef.

Ambiences: all-day bar dining, lounge breakfast, bespoke lunch and a selection of tapas at cocktail hour…

A must: enjoy a cocktail served in a glass chosen by you from the display of glasses behind the bar, all of which have been hunted down in local flea markets.

 

RELAX: a tranquil, harmonious setting for a soirée of timeless pleasure…

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Located opposite the Tuileries garden, the “Bar 228” at the Hôtel Le Meurice is a British-style club with an extraordinary architectural refinement that has transcended the ages: listed and finely gilded 18th century wood panelling, a ceiling and walls embellished with original painted frescoes, with chesterfield sofas and wooden bar stools adding classical style to the setting. Its cosy, intimate ambience is an invitation to immerse yourself in the authentic atmosphere of this historic palace which has played host to crowned heads of state and brilliant artists such as Salvador Dalí. Come the evening, two jazz musicians add to the ambience, performing a mix of great classics and improvised tunes.

A must: listen transfixed to some of the stories recounted by William Oliveri, director of the Bar 228, who joined the Meurice in 1978, such as his account of Dalí entering the hotel bar with great theatricality to kiss the shoe of the Count of Barcelona to renew his allegiance to him. Legendary…

Ambience: informal business meetings, a fast yet refined lunch, chic, relaxed and jazzy aperitifs, a night out at the theatre…

On the corner of Place Iéna, in the former private mansion of Prince Roland Bonaparte, nowadays a listed “Monument Historique”, the Shangri-La Hotel, Paris is a place suspended in time. The bar here, featuring its authentic Empire decor, inspires a sense of both peace and harmony – the perfect setting in which to savour an evening cocktail or glass of wine, chosen from a cellar which the hotel is constantly enhancing. Here, the executive chef and head pastry chef taste the cocktails themselves to help create the perfect sweet and savoury pairing for guests. Meanwhile, the intimate lounge, comprising three rooms with listed historic status, offers an alternative to the bar during the day.

Ambience: quiet business meetings in the morning, a quick tranquil lunch, zen-like afternoon tea, aperitifs and a night out at the theatre…

A must: the edible flowers used in the cocktails, such as pansies, nasturtiums and carrot flowers, either submerged or floating delicately in your glass.

Situated very close to Place Vendôme, the bar in the Park Hyatt Paris – Vendôme boasts a highly distinguished setting, with a design by architect Ed Tuttle featuring chocolate walls illuminated with colourful works by artist Ed Paschke. During the day, the space is bathed in natural light from the hotel patio, while in the evening soft, subdued lighting adds a real sense of comfort and intimacy. “Continually surprise our guests and bring them pleasure” is the mantra of head barman Yann Daniel. A champion in the art of mixology, he serves “bespoke” cocktails as well as a selection of wines, champagnes by the glass, and almost impossible-to-find vintage spirits…

Ambience: relaxed refinement to the background sound of lounge music – the perfect setting for informal business or a stylish and chilled-out city break.

A must: “Express Yourself”, a concept whereby the barman not only creates an exclusive cocktail just for you based on your personal preferences, but he also gives you the secret recipe for what might just become your favourite drink from now on!

SAVOUR: an exclusive gourmet experience

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With its Murano glass wall, imposing central bar sculpted from marble, and moss-coloured walls inlaid with Lalique crystals, the “8” bar at the Mandarin Oriental, Paris will win you over as soon as you walk into it, a sensation enhanced by its heated terrace and the beautiful internal garden it overlooks. The sense of originality here also comes from its Street Marx concept, inspired by food truck cuisine that chef Thierry Marx, at the helm in the kitchen, has reinterpreted with his natural, spellbinding creativity!

Ambience: lunch finger food or “street marx”, cocktail hour tastings, an elegant and relaxed night out at the theatre…

A must: the tailor-made cocktails created from guests’ own suggestions and preferences, which are named after them, added to the cocktail menu, and then savoured in the exclusive VIP alcove.

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