A Parisian hotel with a taste of the orient

Mouthwatering Cantonese cuisine and a stunning rooftop terrace make The Peninsula a destination hotel in the City of Light

L’Oiseau Blanc, the rooftop restaurant at The Peninsula Paris, with 200-degree views of the city
L’Oiseau Blanc, the rooftop restaurant at The Peninsula Paris, with 200-degree views of the city

When the big Asian hotel companies began opening in Paris some years ago, none of us knew whether they’d give its venerated palaces a real run for their money. The joyously pretty, and commendably characterful, Peninsula Paris (paris.peninsula.com; from €795) put paid to my doubts in about 24 hours, mostly by virtue of a nuanced homage to the brand’s Hong Kong heritage that never overshadows the Gallic integrity and spirit of the building it’s in (the illustrious former Hôtel Majestic).

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I could have spent hours in my alcove booth at Lili, the Cantonese restaurant, popping delicate, steaming har gow into my mouth one by one and admiring the soaring, lacquered ceilings (come to think of it, I did). And while I loved the signature Pen touches – the enormous walk-in closet’s calfskin finishes, the bookmatched monochrome marble bathroom, the old‑school valet box – I really loved L’Oiseau Blanc, the rooftop restaurant, for a 200-degree skyline view that could only ever be in the City of Light.

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