Philippe Starck refurbishes Palatial Hotel in Paris

Philippe Starck, the flamboyant French demigod of interior design, has unveiled his latest handiwork: a refurbishment of Le Royal Monceau, a palatial old hotel in Paris’s eighth arrondissement.

The space is actually pretty tame for a guy who once put urinals behind glass. And the hotel rooms are downright boring. Think Pottery Barn with a frog accent. But the public areas are fabulous — a theatrical mix of lush Belle Époque rugs, blinding chandeliers and, this being Starck, giant wooden elk smack dab in the middle of the floor.

The design manages to reference the hotel’s Roaring Twenties heyday (apparently, Josephine Baker used to shimmy around there) and still bear Starck’s eccentric modern aesthetic. It’s smart business; in one swoop, you appeal to both the history buffs and the contemporary design freaks. Not to mention the odd elk fetishist.



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