Walking through the rather understated doorway into a dimly lit interior, checking into the W Paris Opéra feels rather like arriving at an exclusive party. To the right, music emanates from the lounge. A gaggle of guests dressed in skinny jeans and bright cardigans chat animatedly in the hallway. The small reception area is filled with impossibly handsome young men armed with walkie-talkies, ushering guests to the check-in desks to quickly complete the formalities. The pen I’m offered, a ballpoint that someone has seen fit to graft a massive white feather onto the top of, leaves me with the suspicion that I may be either too uncool or too practical to fully appreciate this experience.
Let’s not kid ourselves – this is a seriously good location. The hotel looks out directly onto the famous Opéra Garnier but it’s tucked away enough to offer some protection from the hordes of milling tourists. Navigate across a few pedestrian crossings and you’re in shopping heaven (the Galeries Lafayette and Printemps department stores). The Tuileries Gardens and the Louvre are a 20-minute stroll.
Forget to take your trendy sunglasses off here and you’ll be in trouble – the corridors and room entrances are so dark I wondered if some of the bulbs had gone. Hotel rooms in Paris are rarely large, but the thoughtful efficiency with which my fourth floor “Spectacular” room was designed more than makes up for the small floor space.
One side of the room was dominated by a wall-mounted unit
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