Photo of the Week

ParisUpdate-quai-Seine

On the quais of the Seine. Photo: Ron Fox

 

Paris Update This Week’s Events

For full details about an event, click on the title to visit the official Web site (in English when available).

Christmas singalong
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> So British! Concert: Join the choir and sing along. Practice session on Dec. 10 or click here for singing tutorials. Philharmonie de Paris, Dec. 16.

Christmas markets
> Mulled wine and gifts galore. A full list of Christmas markets in Paris. Various locations and dates.

African music and film
> Africolor cultural festival. Various locations in Paris suburbs, through Dec. 24.

Master of Indian cinema
Festival Satyajit Ray. Cinémathèque Française, Paris, through Dec. 14.

Cultures of the world onstage
> Music, dance, theater and ritual performances from around the world at the Festival de l'Imaginaire. Various locations, Paris, through Dec. 20.

Contemporary arts festival
> The Festival d’Automne presents leading talents in art, dance, film, theater and more from around the world. Various venues, Paris, through Dec. 31.

Music & more in park bandstands
> Kiosques en Fête brings life to the bandstands in Paris’s parks with concerts, writing workshops, club meetings and even a square dance. Various locations, Paris, through Dec. 31.

 

Hotels - Flash News

 

BLC Design Hotel

blc design hotel, paris

The BLC Design Hotel's all-white decor is surprisingly comfy and restful.

Since the just-opened BLC Design Hotel is located next to the Palais des Femmes, a refuge for women in distress in Paris’s 11th arrondissement, its designer, Carole Picard, chose “women” as the hotel’s theme and expressed the concept in an all-white decor.

When the sun shines into one of the hotel’s 29 white-on-white rooms, the effect can be blinding, but not to worry, each one is equipped not only with light-blocking window shades, but also a Night Cove, a fancy lamp/sound system that, based on a French hospital’s sleep research, promises to put you to sleep or wake you up gradually with special light and sound sequences that act on the body’s production of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin. The only touch of color in the hotel comes from these lamps (designed by Patrick Jouin), which give off orange or red light when it’s time to go to sleep and blue light when it’s time to wake up.

The feminine theme is illustrated on each floor by a large photo of an ordinary woman (photographer Lise Laura Batifol found her subjects on the street), with a detail from the photo (an eye, for example) blown up in each room on that floor.

blc design hotel, paris

A blown-up detail of a photo of a woman decorates each guestroom.

While the oversized body parts are a bit much, the all-white decor makes for a nice change from the gloom of most designer hotels (especially any designed by Philippe Starck) and creates a surprisingly relaxing, comfy feel. It has the added advantage of immediately indicating whether the cleaning staff is doing its job properly.

Other unusual features of the BLC: the sink and mirrored showers are not walled off but can be concealed by (white, of course) curtains; there are no closets in the rooms – just drawers under the beds and big, graphic silver clothes hooks; breakfast is served at the (white) bar in the lobby, where guests can also help themselves at any time to drinks on the honor system or fill one of the attractive water bottles provided for free at faucets dispensing the hotel’s own eco-friendly bubbly or flat water.

blc design hotel, paris

Breakfast is served at a bar in the lobby, where guests can also help themselves to drinks any time.

The handsome (white) mosaic in the lobby is by Jérôme Clochard.

Those who like more color in their life might prefer the same group’s Color Design Hotel, also designed by Carole Picard.

The neighborhood is a bit off the beaten track but still has a “real” Parisian feel and is easily accessible from the center of town.

Heidi Ellison

BLC Design Hotel: 4, rue Richard Lenoir, 75011 Paris. Métro: Charonne. Tel.: 01 40 09 60 16. E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Free Wi-Fi. Plasma-screen TV. Rates: €175-205. Two wheelchair-accessible rooms. www.blcdesign-hotel-paris.com

 

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