Since the 16th century, the site of Mandarin Oriental, Paris, has been a Capuchin monastery, a hippodrome, a theatre (the Cirque Olympique) and even a royal riding school. However, fast-forward to present times and the Mandarin Oriental is a celebration of Paris today, inspired by fashion and artistic creativity that could be easily described as contemporary meets Art-Deco, are underpinned by the brand’s legendary service.
This truly Parisian five-star hotel provides an oasis of tranquillity and a cocoon of luxury. Located in the heart of the city, the hotel’s inner garden provides a peaceful dining haven. A wide range of dining options are overseen by Chef Thierry Marx, including the two-Michelin starred Sur Mesure, all-day dining restaurant Camélia, as well as a sumptuous Cake Shop, a classic cocktail bar, and L’Honoré, which serves health conscious cuisine.
Picking an all-day dining option for lunch, led us to the Camélia restaurant. Where you are welcomed by an overflow of white lilies, Camélia is a light-filled space, intended as a continuation of the indoor landscaped garden. As we step closer to the courtyard, the stone floor gradually gives way to wood as though the garden had moved inside.
The serene and crisp white and minimal style is given a lift with hues of pinks and purples within the soft furnishings. Reflecting Thierry Marx’s wish for a menu of simple, instinctive dishes in tune with the times, the menu focuses on individual ingredients used in French cuisine that are also influenced by Chef Marx’s knowledge of the culinary traditions of Japan. Menu highlights included the Beef Chuck, which was braised, and served with truffle potatoes millefeuille, and a red wine sauce infused with dried bonito. However, if you are more into fresh fish and seafood, then there was the roasted John Dory, served with potato and bacon, and a wonderful dolce forte sauce or the juicy seared scallops with truffle and butternut.
Thierry Marx was awarded his first Michelin star in 1988 at Roc en Val in Tours. Following this he was awarded another star at Cheval Blanc in Nimes in 1991. However, following ten years at Châteaux Cordeillan Bages where he held two Michelin Stars, Thierry joined Mandarin Oriental, Paris, his first restaurant in Paris- introducing his original take on traditional French cuisine.
The Camélia restaurant and Mandarin Oriental, Paris, truly offers a magical haven for lovers of the finer things in life- cuisine, style and design, which are all equal within the legendary service, which was awarded the revered ‘Palace’ status, and is therefore officially recognized as one of the ten most exclusive hotels in the French capital.