From the 18th to the 22nd of April, 2013, the Parisian auction house Artcurial will auction off the contents of the luxury hotel Le Crillon. Since 1758, Le Crillon has welcomed guests at its magnificent location on the Place de la Concorde. From its ultra private terrace, guests are sheltered from the view of the curious, but those guests have an unequaled view of the Obélisque de Luxor, the Eiffel Tower, the imposing Assemblée nationale, even the still more private garden of the United States Embassy. Inside, step back into the 18th century and bask under the sparkling chandeliers that have twinkled on kings, queens, presidents, and their equivalents in the realms of sports and entertainment. If you had wanted to stay in the Bernstein suite as President Roosevelt and Michael Jackson both did, it would have cost you 9,600 Euros a night. Now, you can buy the bed, beside table, sofas, rug, desk, and even the towels from this suite and recreate it in your own home.
The auction of a total of 3,500 lots of Crillon history will take place in the salon des Ambassadeurs, which itself is classified as a national landmark, where the great restaurant welcomed guests for over 250 years. The auctioneer refers to the legendary hotel as une bulle hors du temps (oon bool or due tahm), or “a timeless bubble.” From the tea spoons to gilt furniture, it’s all up for sale, with the exception of a few key pieces, such as the elephant-shaped Baccarat liquor cabinet in the tea room, the two marble fountains that are said to come from Versailles, and the paintings, which will be kept for the grand re-opening in 2015. The magnificent chandeliers in the lobby, as well as the ivory and black marble floors, will all be preserved, just buffed up. Click on the Artcurial link, above, and then on “voir le catalogue” for each of the five days to see the pre-auction estimates for each lot.
The new Crillon will have fewer rooms, but the addition of a swimming pool and a spa. If I start saving now, I might just be able to afford a single night in one of the new suites. I think, instead, I’ll content myself with afternoon tea some lovely afternoon and check out that elephant-shaped cabinet for myself.
- Paris’s landmark Crillon hotel closes for makeover (thempreport.com.au)
- The Auction at Hotel Crillon: Cleaning House French Style (artificeparis.com)
- Paris hotel icon closes (ttrweekly.com)
- La grand dame Crillon, when will you return? (thetravellinggourmet.wordpress.com)
- A “Grand Dame” reinvents herself: The Hotel Crillon (artifice-magazine.com)