Now, after closing its doors for a four-year, €2 million (roughly $234 million) refurbishment, the Lutetia is back, adding to the ranks of fashionable luxury hotels in the French capital, just in time for the peak summer season.
Sensitively renovated under the attentive eye of architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte, the spirit of the historic building remains intact with desirable contemporary features incorporated into its classic Art Deco interior.
Don’t expect any last minute bargains though. Room rates start at €850-a-night — with the swanky Presidential suite costing €19,000.
Rooms have now been enlarged — the original total of 233 rooms has been cut to 184 — and there are some highly covetable suites on offer, including two with access to outdoor terraces with spectacular 360 degree views of the City of Light.
The Lutetia was a cultural hotspot for much of the 20th century but during the Second World War, it was requisitioned by Nazi forces and housed officers.
Following the liberation of Paris in 1944, under orders of Charles de Gaulle, the hotel hosted victims of Nazi atrocities looking to reunite with their families.
Later, cultural heavyweights including Pablo Picasso and entertainer and French Resistance activist Josephine Baker were frequent visitors.
Perfect for when the hustle and bustle of Paris — or attempting to read “Ulysses” — takes its toll.