I’ve had my eye on Le Bristol Paris for years but never organized a stay; quite honestly, I just didn’t see any way this iconic luxury hotel I perceived as old world and stuffy could really cater to families. I finally decided to experience the hotel once and for all before the International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM) show this year and realized how wrong I was all this time. It took just 24 hours to ‘get’ why Le Bristol Paris has a loyal following including loads of parents traveling to Paris with kids.
When it comes down to it, it’s all about the service at Le Bristol Paris. The staff is warm and welcoming in a genuine, non-scripted way; they go out of their way to make guests feel at home. The hotel boasts a 60% guest return rate — generations, literally, have been coming here for decades and the staff is a big reason why this is the case.
Owned by the Oetker family since 1978, Le Bristol Paris is committed to tradition and providing guests with an authentic, old-school Parisian experience. There’s nothing stylish, hip, or trendy about this hotel. It’s light and bright, not buzzy or moody. Yet amazingly, it’s not fussy either and one feels no need to whisper. As a consequence, kids are present, accepted and comfortable here.
The home-like (albeit palace-style home-like with priceless art on the walls) atmosphere is accentuated by the presence of Fa-roan, the house cat who lounges shamelessly around the lobby.
Le Bristol offers 188 renovated rooms and suites. Some rooms are quite new as recently added a new wing. Like all old buildings, rooms are a variety of shapes and sizes, but quite a few guest configurations at Le Bristol Paris are absolutely massive, including a number of multi-room Signature Suites measuring well over 2,000 square feet.
Consistent with the ambiance of the public areas, rooms are traditional with just enough electronics to be well appointed, but not so many to be feel state-of-the-art. Even the room keys are metal and old-world. Many rooms are light and bright with big windows overlooking wonderful Parisian views. Marble bathrooms are standard throughout the hotel.
Perhaps the biggest sign that Le Bristol Paris is serious about pleasing families is their kids’ activity room, Les Amis d’Hippolyte, named after the hotel’s mascot for children, Hippolyte, the adorable gardening rabbit.
The kids’ activity room is stocked with toys and games for kids up to 12-years-old. It’s not a traditional kids’ club, but the perfect place for parents to take young children for a fun-filled play break. In addition, parents can drop off kids while they indulge in spa treatments while a member of the spa staff supervises the room.
Hello DIVINE hotel amenity for parents. Sadly, I had no time to give the spa a try but it’s new and run by La Prairie of Switzerland.
Set on the sixth floor, the swimming pool is a special place at Le Bristol Paris with an incredible view of Paris including Montmartre and Sacré-Coeur. The boat-themed space is a warm, cozy and appealing place to relax. It’s not big, but there’s ample room for kids to splash around.
Children are not an afterthought at Le Bristol Paris. This is evident in devoting an entire kids’ activity room to them — amazing for a city hotel — as well as their kids’ amenities including a kids’ menu, family room packages including guaranteed connecting rooms, and the treats provided to kids on arrival.
Le Bristol Paris offers two restaurants, a garden lounge, and bar. I can’t comment on them as I didn’t have a chance to give them a try but 114 Faubourg, one of the restaurants, is the creation of chef Eric Desbordes in collaboration with 3-star Michelin chef Eric Frechon. I have no doubt the food is amazing.
I do love the fact that the hotel has an interior garden offering a casual and comfortable place for families to get a bite. It doesn’t offer loads of space for young kids to run around, but it’s still nice to have access to an enclosed outdoor setting.
Le Bristol Paris is located on the exclusive Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré on the Right Bank. It’s not walking out your door to loads of inexpensive kid-friendly cafés, but there is a metro stop just a few blocks away and this is a main thoroughfare for cabs. That said, this location is certainly central and families with school-age and older kids can walk to the Louvre, Jardin des Tuileries, Place de La Concorde, Champs-Élysées, and Eiffel Tower.
Do you you want to use Ciao Bambino’s custom booking service to get best pricing at Le Bristol Paris? This hotel is not in our official Paris family hotel portfolio, but we’re happy to do the leg work for you and find the room best suited for your needs. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your request.
Editorial Note: Le Bristol Paris offered Ciao Bambino a complimentary night to review the hotel. As always, our thoughts and opinions are our own. Unless otherwise noted, photos by Amie O’Shaughnessy.
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