Dying to visit Oscar Wilde in Paris
I did a photo shoot at L'Hotel and found it to be the most alluring, fascinating and exquisite places I had ever stayed. Built in 1828, L'Hotel's most illustrious guest, Oscar Wilde, took up residence here at the end of the 19th century after his release from jail in England. He lived here until his death in one of the bedrooms, famously claiming "I am dying beyond my means". Not having paid his bill for months, he had informed the hotel "my wallpaper and I are fighting a duel to the death".
Full of charm, elegance and glamour, L'Hotel only has 20 bedrooms. There is a private hammam in the vaults for individual use by guests. I had a dip early in the morning, the water was deliciously tepid and relaxing.
The restaurant is Michelin-starred and the extremely chic 'Le Bar' is one of Paris's best loved and well kept secrets. The cocktails are sublime.
With Cocteau drawings on the wall and letters from Wilde to his friends, L'Hotel is steeped in discreet enchanting Parisian style and history. The framed letters and unpaid bills from the hotel management to Wilde made me laugh, asking him to please pay up the outstanding £20,000 in today's money, he still owed. The man who had nothing to declare except his genius. He truly was that, and I felt privileged to spend a few days in this unique extraordinary place.
L'Hotel is situated on the Rue Des Beaux Arts in the bohemian district of Saint-Germain-des-Pres, Paris.