I saw Fontevraud L’Hotel featured in an architectural design magazine a couple of years ago and I placed a sticky note on it as a reminder that I should visit it one day.
Fast forward and here I am at Fontevraud L’Hotel which forms part of the Fontevraud Abbaye Royale – and it definitely did not disappoint. The setting is idyllic and in a sense, spiritual. Service was warm, the rooms were simple and modern, and it is the common areas and the grounds that make it extra special.
I usually stay in the 6th Arrondissement when in Paris, however I decided to try staying in a different neighbourhood during this visit. The first hotel I stayed at is the very new two-month old Maison Bréguet in the 11th arrondissement, which was a former factory converted into a 53 room hotel. The finishes are of high quality and service was warm and professional.
The second hotel I stayed at is Hotel Fabric, also located in the 11th in the Oberkampf district. This hotel also has an industrial past and currently has 33 guest rooms. Service was efficient, though I would tend to favour Maison Bréguet.
Now for the other fun part, the “eats”!
Café Jacquemart-André, located at the Museum, is one of the most beautiful tea rooms I have seen – and in addition, the pastries are wonderful!
One of the restaurants I enjoyed last year was Café Trama in the 6th Arrondissement and close to Placide. It still is as good as I remember it and that explains why it continues to be in this year’s Michelin guide.
One of the new restaurants I tried is Villaret, a Michelin Bib Gourmand restaurant. They serve excellent traditional French cuisine with the option of prix fixe menus for dinner.
Another excellent restaurant I highly recommend is Clamato. This seafood-centric bistro takes no reservations but definitely worth visiting. I was lucky to snag the last bar seat the evening I dropped by – no wonder it is also Michelin Bib Gourmand rated.
Across from Hotel Fabric is the wonderful and charming La Cave de l’Insolite. The food was delicious and the service was friendly. Clientele were mostly locals in the neighbourhood.
Restaurant Le Plantagenêt is right outside the Fontevraud Abbey gates and served good traditional French restaurant.
Of course, no visit to this city is complete without a stop at Pierre Hermé. This time I had the 2000 Feuilles and definitely worth the calories! As in last year, I took my pastry and ate it at Place Saint Sulpice, while the pigeons stared at me.