|Photos by Pierre Monetta, courtesy of Le Meurice|
Luxury Travel Advisor recently attended the launch of the newly redesigned Alain Ducasse restaurants at Le Meurice in Paris. Nine years after first making waves with Dali-inspired décor, General Manager Franka Holtmann re-enlisted star designer Philippe Starck to work his magic on the hotel's dining concepts: the elegant Michelin two-starred restaurant, Le Dalí, and Bar 228. Starck’s daughter Ara painted the monumental canvas that’s suspended from the ceiling of Le Dalí. Holtmann described the impetus behind the relaunch: with such incredible competition in the Paris luxury hotel sector, hotels only keep getting better, and they’re lucky that the Dorchester Collection makes the investment. (The price tag on the project was 1.8 million euros.)
Holtmann gave carte blanche to Philippe Starck and Alain Ducasse—a duo of “geniuses who operate with daring.” The restaurant redesign respects the elegant historical salon, adding cool new updates like tear-shaped Murano glass hanging from the designer lamps and a striking sculpture, made from the same precious glass, emerging from a vegetable display centerpiece.
Ducasse recruited chef Jocelyn Herland from The Dorchester in London to take over in the kitchen. With inspiration from Ducasse’s native southwest France, the Riviera, and Catalonia, the cuisine has totally been revamped to “bring in the sunshine,” explains Herland. The gourmet sharing plates served at Le Dalí create a convivial ambiance.
First opened on the rue de Rivoli in 1815, Le Meurice was the first palace hotel in Paris, with an enviable setting facing the Tuileries gardens.