Funky Chic Medina in Marseilles

Au Vieux Panier

Six artists.  Six rooms.  One house.  In the heart of the historical Le Panier district of Marseille lies Au Vieux Panier, a Maison d’Hôtes of six unique rooms.  What differentiates this boutique hotel from others is that each room is designed by artists, graphic designers, and painters representing various styles, locales, & genres. Housed in a 17th century building that once served as a Corsican bakery, this hotel marries historic and modern.  From the rooftop terrace, guests can enjoy an afternoon cocktail while taking in panoramic views of the old city center across to the harbor.  Stylishly decorated with art installations throughout, staying in this hotel is a unique experience indeed.

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LL Cool J…”Mama Said Stay at the Mama Shelter”

Mama Shelter

Designed by Philippe Starck of Royalton (New York) and Delano (Miami) fame, the Mama Shelter rocks funky.  The ceilings are grafittied blackboards, the walls are exposed or waxed concrete, and the light fixtures are made from birdcages.  On the first floor is a hip restaurant overseen by Chef Alain Senderens, who has created a menu that highlights the best of French regional cuisine.  Before dinner, check out the rooftop bar and enjoy a mean cocktail…or three.

Rooftop bar

Stylish & trendy, this hotel is located in the offbeat Charonne, a colorful neighborhood of art galleries, bookshops, tattoo parlors, and vintage boutiques on the edge of Paris. It is indeed hip Paris at its best.

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Urban Chic in Antwerp

Hotel Julien

In the heart of historic Antwerp lies the Hotel Julien, an upscale boutique hotel in a 16th century townhouse with an interior courtyard and a rooftop terrace.  Minimalist in design, yet melding cosmopolitan and traditional elements throughout, each room is uniquely appointed with designer furniture and custom Egyptian cotton percale sheets, providing an inviting sanctuary following a long day of business or sightseeing in the city.  Be sure to grab a cocktail or a Belgian ale at the boho-chic Honesty Bar in the lobby before heading out for an evening on the town.  And if you fancy the photographs on the walls, ask about purchasing one from Gallery Fifty One, with whom the hotel partners to showcase the work of local photographers.

Retro & Kitsch – 25 Hours in Hamburg

Henri Mancini in Hamburg? Indeed. Walk through the entrance of the 25 Hours Hotel and you can almost hear the Pink Panther theme song playing in the background. With a 60s mod theme and a funky mix of retro design elements, this hotel transports guests back to a time when television was black and white and everyone was drinking martinis by 5:00pm. The guest rooms evoke the classic era of James Bond films with their soft patterned wallpaper, exposed concrete, and lots of radiant white, as well as zebrawood and accents in red and magenta. Not to be missed, the fourth floor boasts an open-air cocktail lounge where guests can order their drinks “shaken, not stirred” under pink-fringed sun umbrellas…007 himself would be proud.

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Classic 70s Chic in Paris

Hotel Le A

Imbuing the sophistication of the left bank and tucked away on a side street near the Arc de Triomphe, the Hôtel Le A evokes classic 70s chic. A minimalist, all white boutique hotel, it channels the styles of Andy Warhol, Cy Twombly, and Claes Oldenburg.  The café/bar echoes the clean open space of a New York loft and the library features dark brown velvet sofas where guests can peruse one of the many art, fashion, and design books that line the shelves.  Embarking from an elevator that indicates floors by changing color inside, guests find their rooms, each of which is cozy and uniquely appointed with items that reflect a specific theme.  The Hotel A is contemporary yet charming and espouses the essence of Parisian chic.

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