the city of light hasn't exactly been short of chic eateries. it has a reputation as the undisputed capital of luxe, pulling in a sophisticated demographic from far and beyond that loves to indulge in its many delights. the city's history is inextricably linked to many a hedonist ruler who, not surprisingly, has left paris with a lifestyle culture and infrastructure that's rivalled by very few other places, and it's one that continues to evolve in innovative ways. on the site of a former late-night haunt in the leafy victor hugo area of town, a new upscale restaurant recently opened its doors that has the well-heeled totally transfixed. called victoria 1836, the establishment sits on the ground floor of a rather grand 19th-century hôtel particulier or townhouse, and is the latest venture of benjamin patou.
the celebrated hospitality entrepreneur enlisted french interior designer sarah lavoine to design a matching interior, and we dare say it's one that pushes all of our buttons. the setting is welcoming, homey even, but created with sheer luxury in mind. the design is distinctly contemporary with nods to the building's historic past, featuring natural materials such as oak, marble and cut stone that effortlessly blend into the lofty space. mid-century inspired chairs and sofas are paired with simple, classic tables, and the linear motif of the fluffy carpet corresponds with the beautiful design of a series of pendant lamps.
mind you, the light fixtures at victoria 1836 are true eye-cacthers, including the more modestly-sized wall lamps. the design of the bar adds a touch of shiny glam to the place. a collab of sorts with chivas regal, it features a lit curved roof replete with whiskey bottles. so, what's the menu like victoria 1836? chef alexandre auger has gained extensive experience at a number of lauded establishments, and is now a rising star himself. very much a place for any time of the day - yes, we mean from breakfast to a late dinner - the restaurant's offerings is cosmopolitan to say the least, listing many classic bites and dishes, in addition to a number of fashionable asian-fusion concoctions.
needless to say, this place has quite a wine list to match, especially in the bubbly department. and once you've sipped a glass of that mesmerizing nectar, you may as well proceed straight for the dance floor. say what? yes, dance floor. opening shortly on the premises is an eagerly anticipated night club, designed by none other than rock star-turned-interior designer lenny kravitz. location: 12 rue de presbourg, second floor [chaillot].