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Parisian Bistro Breaks Up the Crowd

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Overrun by touristy cafes and dives, Les Halles, Paris finally catches a break with new restaurant, Pirouette. Plate glass windows reminiscent of Los Angeles beckon crowds to this quality bistro that aims for an honest price and satisfying product.

The two-course lunch menu is a steal: servers trot out traditional eats like pot roast with carrot puree, and crispy chicken breast with mashed potatoes. The higher priced three-course menu features more elaborate options, such as chilled cream of lettuce soup with an egg cooked sous-vide to medium, smoked eel with confit potatoes, rare roasted pigeon, and pan-seared whiting with withered zucchini and tomato and fresh radish. Classic desserts are given a twist, like the soggy baba au rhum with lime sauce.

With most Les Halles eateries plagued by crowds, niche bistro Pirouette grants epicurean city-goers a sigh of relief.

Maria Pedone is a digital editorial intern at Travel + Leisure.

Photo: Wendy Lyn @ TheParisKitchen.com

Paris Hotel Attracts a Hungry Lunch Crowd

Sofitel Le Faubourg

Upscale Paris hotel, the Sofitel Le Faubourg, is now catering to its epicurean guests. The hotel’s restaurant re-launched as Les Collections after a take over by Japanese chef Keigo Kimura. Chic, art deco Pierre-Yves Rochon décor adorn the interior and expansive terrace.

Chef Kimura’s menu aims for sophistication without being overly fussy. Entrees include cool crabmeat with broccoli custard and fresh herbs, and roasted monkfish served in a shellfish bouillon with blanched baby vegetables.

Les Collections’ posh appearance coincides flawlessly with the Sofitel chain, making it a popular escape for France’s business crowd.

Maria Pedone is a digital editorial intern at Travel + Leisure.

Photo courtesy of Sofitel Paris Le Faubourg

Bizarre Paris Bar Gives the City a Stir

Le Bristol

A quirky bar is just the prescription to liven up an otherwise ordinary neighborhood. Take Paris’s bizarre new bar at Le Bristol, for example. A giant stuffed peacock welcomes you at the door, leading you to other tasteful taxidermy within the expansive former conference suite.

Located within the luxurious Hôtel Le Bristol, Le Bristol’s wood paneling, parquet floor, and sumptuously upholstered furniture give the venue a younger feel than the rest of the hotel. Lending also to the club vibe is the mirrored LED display over the bar, which runs slide shows and video art from local artists.

The bartender, poached from the Ritz Paris’s Hemingway Bar, serves an array of unique craft cocktails. Tapas, including beef carpaccio and urchin taramasalata, are designed by triple Michelin-starred chef Eric Frechon. Le Bristol’s offbeat personality is bound to make it the hot local watering hole.

Maria Pedone is a digital editorial intern at Travel + Leisure.

Photo by Romeo Balancourt Paris Photography

Spa Day Sightseeing in Paris

Four Seasons Paris

After ascending the Eiffel Tower and walking miles through the Louvre, a spa day in Paris is in perfect order. The following spas in the City of Light help relieve any sightseeing aches:

Hôtel Le Meurice has completely rebuilt its spa to allow a generous flow of natural light. Expansions include a couple’s suite, new manicure and pedicure stations, and terrace for the ultimate pampering experience.

Shangri-La hotel recently added a 15x16m indoor swimming pool to its spa and fitness facility, as well as two treatment rooms for massages, facials, and body treatments.

If you are looking for the cherry-on-top to your relaxing spa day, consider slumbering in the penthouse suite at Four Seasons Hotel George V. The grand suite got a revamp this summer with a mix of pale sand and apricot colors, traditional fabrics, and eclectic, antique knick-knacks. Six terraces offer 360-degree views and 160-square-feet means an oasis of open, tranquil space to make you sigh, Ah, Pari!

Maria Pedone is a digital editorial intern at Travel + Leisure.

Photo courtesy of Four Seasons Hotel George V

Paris: New Hotel Gets Space-Age Design

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Hotel designs are constantly shifting, so why not think a few millennia ahead? Paris’s Hotel O, designed by Ito Morabito, recently debuted as a colorful, futuristic boutique property near Place des Victoires.

While the 29 compact guestrooms feel like a space cabin, the loud blue, violet, and Kelly green accents make it feel as if you’ve already landed on another planet. In larger rooms, beds recede into walls to maximize small quarters. Dark, pressed wood acts as a unifying element across the bold color scheme. Quirky details extend to the bar with honeycomb-motif shelves, giving Hotel O’s imbibing guests something to talk about. Doubles from $329.

Maria Pedone is a digital editorial intern at Travel + Leisure.

Photo courtesy of Studio Ora-ito

Trip Doctor: 5 New Hotels to Watch in 2013

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I am a hotel nerd. At the start of each year, I scan the next 12 months for openings to obsess over. Here, five newcomers that have me at the edge of my seat.

United States
I’ve found a new way to play out my Wild West fantasy. Set on 1,600 acres deep in the Colorado Rockies, Cresto Ranch (pictured) opens in June with a main lodge in a restored 19th-century farmhouse and eight safari-style tents, all with en-suite bathrooms, gas stoves, enormous beds, and—color me happy—private porches where you can daydream while gazing out at the vast wilderness. The retreat is four miles down the Dolores River from sister property Dunton Hot Springs, a luxury pioneer in the Rockies. (And yes! Cresto guests can pop over to Dunton for a dip).

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Trip Doctor: Delta Brings an Outdoor Lounge to JFK

Delta outdoor lounge

Fancy a little sunbathing on your next trip through JFK? As part of its $1.2 billion expansion of the airport’s Terminal 4, Delta Air Lines will open an outdoor sun terrace—a bold addition to its already ambitious plans for a 24,000-square-foot Sky Club lounge. The JFK Sky Deck, with runway views and Miami Beach-style seating, is expected to debut in May. A Sky Deck will also open near the Delta Sky Club at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport over the summer.

Amy FarleyHave a travel dilemma? Need some tips and remedies? Send your questions to news editor Amy Farley at tripdoctor@aexp.com. Follow @TLTripDoctor on Twitter.

 

Photo courtesy of Delta Airlines

Four Seasons: Two Openings in China

Four Seasons Pudong

The Four Seasons Hotel Chain continued its China streak with the 2012 opening of a 187-room property in Shanghai’s Pudong district (above). Design firm Wilson Associates has created some seriously sexy interiors—ebony woods, stingray-colored smoked glass, and a red–black–grey palette—while SPIN and AB Concept will probably create some visual fireworks with the two restaurants, Camelia and Shang-Xi.

The chain’s real showstopper, Four Seasons Guangzhou, however, opened last July. It occupies the 70th to 98th floors of the 103-story IFC mall and has a 30-story atrium, swish red–white–gold interiors, and an extensive contemporary art collection.

Four Seasons Guangzhou Lounge

Jennifer Chen is Travel + Leisure's Asia correspondent. You can follow her on Twitter  @xiaochen6.

Photos courtesy of Four Seasons Hotels

Q+A: Graydon Carter Re-Opens Beatrice Inn

Graydon Carter Q+A

Graydon Carter, the Vanity Fair editor-in-chief who moonlights as a restaurateur, has a Midas touch when it comes to reviving classic New York spots. He brought the Waverly Inn back to life in 2006, and Monkey Bar shortly thereafter. His latest transformation, with partners Emil Varda and Brett Rasinski: the West Village’s Beatrice Inn (285 W. 12th St.; $$$$), a 1950’s-era Italian restaurant turned nightclub turned chophouse. Here, Carter dishes on what it takes to succeed, the perfect sound track for eating steak, and more.

What to expect at the Beatrice Inn: This is downtown, so we don’t serve traditional huge steaks. Brian Nasworthy, a former Per Se sous-chef, runs the kitchen. There are a lot of salads—my wife demanded that.

Favorite New York chophouse: Keens Steakhouse (72 W. 36th St.; $$$). It was the hot place in the late 1800's, and it is still packed. The food is wonderful, and the drinks are hearty. I have the roast beef twice a year.

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The Philippines's New Villa Resort

Dedon Island

Ask German soccer star turned furniture entrepreneur Bobby Dekeyser how he spends his time at Dedon Island—his new nine-villa resort on Siargao Island, in the southeastern Philippines—and he’ll wax on about surfing Cloud 9 beach, fishing for lapulapu, and paddleboarding to the offshore pagoda. Even if your agenda is more relaxed—say, picnic dinners in the mangrove forest or endless spa treatments—it’s all included. Which means your entire stay feels as carefree as a nap in one of the property’s whimsical “nests,” handwoven pods that hang from coconut trees. $$$$$

Photo by Paul Barbera / Courtesy of Dedon Island

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