Curio – A Collection by Hilton TM is made for the curious longing for discovery and authenticity. It is a collection of original and unique hotels, impossible to forget. The hand-picked hotels of this collection aim to create the delight, to share a story and tell secrets to their guests. The story behind luxurious boutique hotel Maison Astor is not only remarkable, but it can also bring ravishing experience to anyone nostalgic for Parisian Belle Epoque and timeless capsule of classic New York from the beginning of the 1900s, as well as for the like-minded of one James Cameron. So let us begin.
Maison Astor building dates back to 1907
In the heart of the 8th arrondissement, at 11 Rue d’Astorg once resided the richest man on the Titanic, famous American businessman John Jacob Astor IV. He became enamored with the glittery boulevards of the City of Lights. John Jacob liked the charms of the Old World so much that his desire to have his own Parisian home came to fruition as early as in 1907 when the Maison Astor was built.
The lobby will plunge you into John Jacob Astor world
Hospitality industry was in his genes. His grandfather John Jacob Astor opened the Astor House, the first luxury hotel in New York City. Located on the corner of Broadway and Vesey Street in Lower Manhattan, it opened in 1836 as the Park Hotel and soon became the best-known hotel in America. John Jacob Astor IV had been a part of the hospitality world since the mid-1890s when he built the Astoria Hotel on the Astor family property in New York. It was meant to rival his cousin’s hotel, the Waldorf Hotel, but instead, the two joined to become the Waldorf-Astoria, a hotel known for its opulence and affluent clientele.
John Jacob Astor, freshly married to his second, much younger wife Madeleine, enjoyed his glamorous Parisian mansion up to the fateful moment in 1912 when they both boarded the mightiest ship ever to sail the oceans. The epilogue of the story is well known to anyone who watched James Cameron’s masterpiece – John Jacob and pregnant Madeleine got separated while abandoning the sinking behemoth and in the following hours she was saved in her lifeboat by the passenger steamship “Carpathia”. John Jacob Astor IV, one of the richest and most powerful men of his time, wasn’t among the survivors.
John Jacob Astor former residence channels the spirit of refinery and lifstyle of old-world luxury
Spending time in the Parisian home of the richest man in the world at that time, was a truly marvelous experience. Not only because of its former glory but simply because it is one of the best modern boutique hotels that we had a chance to visit this year. Situated in one of the Parisian most elegant neighborhoods, the famous Madeleine district, Maison Astor is a fairly large hotel with 131 recently refurbished rooms. In 2018 thorough renovations took place, turning the already beautiful hotel into a contemporary work of art. Everything inside Maison Astor is meticulously designed to evoke the memories of its former owner. There are details throughout the hotel that clearly refer to John Jacob’s interest in science fiction – he was a published author after all. The hotel’s conference rooms, the “Kitty’s Library” and the “Travel Study” are each devoted to various aspects of Mr. Astor’s colorful persona.
The Kitty’s Library
Staying at the Maison Astor, we discovered opulent guestrooms with plush bedding, luxury toiletries, and classic Parisian décor. There are several categories: from the smallest Single rooms to the large King Suite. The walls and furniture in the shades of gray are subdued and elegant, while marble bathrooms add to the overall impression of prestige and quality. In our deluxe room walls were adorned with grey wallpapers in two different prints and picture of Madeleine. She was looking straight at us with her posh hairdo, and for a second we truly felt like we were her guests. Knowing the story of this notable Parisian address we couldn’t stop wondering what was it like to live here, how Paris looked at that time, picturing scenes of Astor’s journey on Titanic. Looking out the window we enjoyed the marvelous courtyard with a central glass roof of the fabulous restaurant that we were longing to visit.
The most prestigious rooftop King Suite is the icing on a cake, albeit completely different in design. Wrapped in Hermès fabrics, this suite will win you not only with its rich interior but also with breathtaking 360-degree views on the roofs of Paris, the Eiffel Tower, Grand Palais, Les Invalides, and Sacré-Cœur.
Rooftop King suite
Maison Astor has a Dining room and a Private club where guests can discover a wonderful culinary experience. The cuisine of the Maison Astor can be decoded as Paris-meets-New York and it will enable you to discover tasty dishes of the Chef Nicolas Clavier with fresh and local ingredients. The restaurant has hints of Belle-Epoque with velvet chairs, private salons, crystal chandeliers and dominant portraits of the legendary owner and his mother Lina Astor.
Lina Astor had her own elite club in New York named “The 400,” where she hosted lavish dinner parties. She was the foremost authority on the “Aristocracy” of New York in the late nineteenth century. La Salle à Manger replicates the splendor of John Jacob Astor IV‘s mother’s famous dinner receptions, complete with organic, seasonal ingredients that support local businesses.
We began each day in Parisian fashion with delicious pastries, jam and butter, some fruit or juice, and café au lait. For lunch, we enjoyed French meats and cheeses.
Tea time is open every afternoon and 24-hour in-room dining is available. “La Salle” ends the day in speakeasy style, bringing guests back to the time of Prohibition.
Maison Astor also comprises the outstanding fitness room, designed to emulate period-correct gymnasium. Its fantastic rowing machine maybe won’t turn you to Schwarzenegger, but it will surely make you feel at least like Jake Dempsey!
Maison Astor benefits of its central location. Nearby are some of the most iconic Parisian landmarks, such as the Madeleine Church, the Louvre Museum, Opéra Garnier and the Champs-Elysées. For serious shoppers and various luxury aficionados, there are plenty of options for the enjoyment – famous shopping street Rue Saint-Honoré is just around a corner and iconic Printemps Haussmann and Galleries Lafayette department stores are within 5-minutes walking distance.
Maison Astor Paris, Curio Collection by Hilton
Address: 11 Rue d’Astorg, 75008 Paris – France
Phone: +33 (0)1 53 05 05 0
To book a table in the restaurant, contact:
Phone: +33 (0)1 53 05 05 05 48
Vukota Brajovic and Vesna Filipovic for Fashionela