September 25, 2012
Boutique hotel Le Bristol Paris is bolstering its property with the addition of ultra-luxe lounge Le Bar du Bristol that will likely be a stomping ground for young, affluent consumers.
The completion of the Le Bar du Bristol is part of the hotel’s three-year, $143 million renovation project. The hotel could be looking for guaranteed foot traffic during off-travel seasons through the establishment of this venue.
“Luxury travelers are looking to experience a destination,” said Taylor Rains, account coordinator at Rawle Murdy Associates, Charleston, SC. “While this desire is most obviously addressed when they select a location, it is of equal importance when considering accommodations.
“Having on-property entertainment demonstrates to prospective guests that they are guaranteed the experience they are looking for in their vacation,” he said. “People often romanticize Paris, and for good reason, as a city where beauty and class meet leisure and relaxation.
“Le Bristol Paris is invoking those exact sentiments with the Le Bar du Bristol.”
Mr. Rains is not affiliated with Le Bar du Bristol, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.
Le Bristol Paris was not available for comment before press deadline.
The interior of Le Bar du Bristol was designed by French architect Pierre-Yves Rochon and his team, as well as the owning Oetker family’s Maja Oetker.
The lounge contains a mural fresco of a garden by French artist Thierry Bruet that was commissioned for Le Bar du Bristol.
The bar is made from golden-colored granite while the wooden floor is made from Versailles oak and 100-year-old natural pine paneling from Esher in Surrey.
Other contents of the lounge include silk privacy curtains, floor-to-ceiling bookcases, a marble fireplace, winged armchairs, Rubelli wall seats, small English Petworth Chairs and Le Manach leopard-print fabric House of Porto Romana Giacometti stools.
Le Bar du Bristol
There will be a rotating selection of contemporary art displayed on the mirror-turned-screen behind the bar from 9-10:30 p.m. each night. The screen will also show movies and videos on travel, architecture, urbanism and landscapes.
Additionally, Le Bar du Bristol will host DJs of different genres Thursday through Saturday 9:30 p.m.-1:30 a.m.
Le Bristol Paris’ chef des cuisine Eric Frechon created the menu for the lounge. Items include Maki rolls with king crab and vegetables in spicy ketchup, gambas tempura with ginger and coriander mayonnaise, chicken wings in satay sauce, Comté and Emmental cheese straws and Parmesan shortbread.
Recognized mixologist Maxime Hoerth will be the head barman. He created cocktails for the lounge such as the Bristol Old Fashioned No. 1 and the Heartbreaker.
Keep them coming
Luxury hotels could ensure foot traffic during off-seasons through on-property venues that attract locals.
For example, Starwood Hotels & Resorts’ Luxury Collection brand brought a partner New Delhi, India, property restaurant to its London hotel as a limited-time pop-up joint that proved to be popular with locals by maxing out on reservations before opening.
The restaurant served Indian cuisine prepared on-site in a culture-oriented setting with some proceeds donated to protect endangered Asian elephants (see story).
In addition, Starwood Hotels & Resorts’ St. Regis Aspen Resort opened a concept restaurant through an exclusive licensing agreement with American Express Publishing’s Food & Wine called the Chefs Club by Food & Wine that is based on the publication’s Best New Chef award program (see story).
It may take some time for locals to warm up to new venues so marketers may want to encourage word of mouth through marketing efforts.
“It is unlikely that guests will flock to the hotel immediately upon Le Bar du Bristol’s official debut,” Mr. Rains said. “That said, the bar will likely establish the property as a go-to for those looking to grab a drink and experience true Parisian style and sophistication.
“If successful, this sort of brand development would transform Le Bristol Paris from a luxury property to an all-around Parisian destination,” he said.
Tricia Carr, editorial assistant on Luxury Daily, New York