Pack your compass. As if to spurn the burgeoning crop of luxury palaces and slick boutique hotels crowding the Champs-Élysées area, a new wave of hip, independent-minded high-concept hotels is homesteading Paris’s more remote, less visited neighborhoods. Simply trying to find them is half the fun.
Owned partly by the proprietors of the nightclub Le Baron, the Hotel Amour hides in an untouristed, undistinguished lane near Pigalle, Paris’s red-light district. Like Le Baron, the place has become a darling of the international fashion and rock ‘n’ roll set.
Farther afield is the 41-room Kube, a high-tech boutique hotel in an area known mainly for cheap immigrant restaurants. But other than the boxy retro-futurist furnishings, there’s nothing square about the Kube, which draws stylish media and design types to its sub-zero Ice Bar (the cover charge is good for a half hour and includes a winter parka and gloves and unlimited vodka).
You’ll swear you’re in early 20th-century Vienna when you wake up at the Little Palace. After a complete renovation, the hotel has become a shrine to the painter Gustav Klimt; copies of his glittering, mystical works adorn the bar, restaurant and 53 rooms.
By SETH SHERWOOD