The City of Light - Paris

Planning a honeymoon, anniversary or just want a once in a lifetime unforgettable travel experience?  Why not treat yourself to a glamorous getaway in beautiful Paris!  With must-see landmarks around every corner, stunning architecture and world-class shopping and dining; I can't think of a more perfect place to experience in style. 

I have recently returned from a three-day whirlwind adventure in this great city and would love to share the grand experience I had on both the flight and two luxurious five-star Sofitel properties.  Hopefully, this will help guide you when planning your own special trip to the City of Lights!

Early in 2016, Air France debuted their direct Vancouver to Paris flight and I had the great privilege of flying Business Class on their Boeing 770-200ER aircraft.  This was by far the most comfortable flight I’ve ever been on and I can’t think of a better way to ensure you arrive refreshed and relaxed.  Check-in and security was a breeze through the dedicated Sky Priority express line.  

On board the state of the art modern design allows your seat to convert into a fully lie-flat bed that makes for a very comfortable night's sleep. Spacious legroom, ample storage and a three-course dining menu designed by Michelin-starred French chefs are just some of the additional perks that make flying Business Class an experience to remember!  Good tip – even guests in Premium Economy can take advantage of the Sky Priority benefits and everyone on board gets a glass French champagne before takeoff!

Deciding where to stay can be a challenge in Paris.  There are over 1500 hotels to choose from and each of the twenty districts/Arrondissements offer their own unique charm and experience.  If you prefer traditional old-world luxury (think Hollywood glamour) I highly recommend staying at the Scribe Paris Opera hotel by Sofitel. 

Walking into this hotel you are struck by the beauty of the crystal chandeliers, stone floors and opulent decor.  The hotel is said to be where cinema was born and you’ll find the theme carried out tastefully throughout the hotel. 

You’ll be treated like royalty here but they’ve added personal touches to their own library, tea room and cozy fireplaces that give you the warmth of home.  This hotel has excelled in creating a lavish experience without feeling stuffy or pretentious. 

It’s only a three-minute walk to the impressive Palais Garnier Opera House where many world-class performances are staged and two minutes to the closest metro station for exploring the rest of the city.

If modern elegance is more your style then you cannot beat the five star Sofitel Paris Arc De Triomphe.  Many hotels in this area suffer from noisy outside traffic but the Sofitel is situated on a quiet road away from the hustle and bustle.  Still easily accessible from the metro and an easy walk to many Paris attractions it's a great base for both leisure and business travellers.  

Renovated in 2013 there's a freshness to the hotel and you’ll find stylish and contemporary décor throughout the hotel and guest rooms.  Their impressive Junior Suites have some of the largest and most elaborate bathrooms I’ve ever seen which is very rare for Paris accommodation.  This property is also the perfect place to plan your Business meetings and events with several sophisticated room options that can fit up to 60 people. 

Seeing a trend for healthy farm-to-table dining, their world-renowned chef Christian Constant has created something very special and unique at the hotel restaurant ‘Le Cocottes’.  Each stunning dish is presented in cocottes (think small cast iron pots) and make seasonal produce the star.  It’s a dining experience you won’t forget and one you’ll want to tell all your friends about. 

My last piece of advice is simply to put Paris at the top of your list.  Au Revoir!

(Written by Diana Collini - Account Manager for Corporate Traveller Vancouver)