When it comes to palaces, a universe full of history and tradition emerges in the collective imagination. Like "asset trophies", palaces are charged with history and are compared to paintings by Old Masters, justifying their exceptional acquisition prices. However, they must constantly reinvent themselves and maintain their standing and polish their brand image. There is nothing worse than a hotel with a glorious past that has aging or even obsolete infrastructures. Operators, owners and investors alike understand this well. Paris's palaces are thus being renovated one after the other to offer their guests services worthy of their reputation. A few years ago, virtually none of them boasted three stars in the Michelin Guide, while today there are far more of them than ever before. In the same way, what were once peripheral services such as the spa, pastry shop, concierge, snack bar, lounges, shops, co-working, and even the bar... have become basic services that also address potential customers from the surrounding neighborhood, the whole of Paris, and beyond. This evolution is in response to new customer expectations, and to investors who have spent huge sums of money and wish to develop sales in addition to accommodations, thereby improving profitability.
Bobos, writers, actors, publishers, intellectuals, politicians, businessmen, and thinkers from all over Paris are re-appropriating these exceptional hotels in addition to vacation tourists, business travelers and permanent guests. The Ritz is re-enchanting the Place Vendôme, the Crillon delights the Place de la Concorde, and Le Meurice once again attracts exceptional artists on the Rue de Rivoli, to name but a few. Each one has its own strong identity and individual services.
Irreproachable service, luxury offers and quality products are not all it takes... the Parisian palaces must be brought to life to make them an essential place to be seen, for socializing and network developing as well as intellectual betterment. Parisian palaces have become "the place to be" by offering meetings, events, exchanges... The quality of the restaurant and all the other services that surf the well-being wave, health, organic, short circuits, ... are a plus to satisfy an ever more demanding clientele.
In Saint-Germain-des-Prés the reopening of the Lutetia is eagerly awaited with the promise of a return to its origins after several years of restoration work. This prestigious landmark was commissioned by Madame Boucicaut, the owner of Le Bon Marché in 1910, to accommodate the store's most prestigious clients. Paris's history is heavy, loaded with a past rich in events that have encouraged the advancement of French society, and, if we go back to the Enlightenment, the world.
A history, a character, a unique aura, a culture of service based on decades of high-end corporate culture, all the ingredients are there. Now it is time to add the extra touch, the competitive advantage that will decide the clients and also allow the palace to be reborn in the hearts of its neighbors, so that it brings life and belonging to the neighborhood. What could be more noble than contributing to the progress of society by bringing together and encouraging debates and meetings? Parisian palaces have the immense advantage of having a very strong product and brand image, and it should not be overlooked; something new should be created from the old by constantly reinventing without effacing its soul. Guests who go down to the Plaza do not choose to go down to the Shangri-La and vice versa. These treasures must be cultivated, as they create the appeal of our palaces among the glittering lights of Paris. As long as they select the right ingredients and are managed impeccably, they can only thrive. These properties, which hold their own in first class worldwide, are a locomotive for our hotel industry and our destinations. It is up to the others to follow suit.