Hotel detecting is very much a matter of perspective, as The Hotel Detective relearned during a recent two-night stay at the Pullman Eiffel Tower, an Accor hotel.
It is the hotel closest to Paris’ signature monument—a mere five-minute walk—but the architecture and layout of the property are such that most of the 430 rooms actually don’t look out at the Tower. However, in the ones that do—most on the front façade—guests have a “full eyes” or an eyeful of the Tower.
The rooms to request are the 05 to 20 series, all of them Deluxe category doubles on the hotel’s front facade (below). They’re not that much larger than the two categories below, Superior and Classic: You’re paying for the balcony with the view. If you want to step up to a suite-with-a-sweet view of ET, book one of the eight Trocadero Suites (the 04 series). It’s ironic that it’s the distance of these rooms from the Tower—they’re on the far end of the façade—that perhaps provides the best perspective on the tower. From the Deluxes closer in, you have to crane your neck over the railing a bit or stand at the far end of the balcony to see the Tower. The best seat in the house is the Eiffel Tower Suite on the 11th floor (second below), from which the there’s a Tower view from the balcony and the bath. Third below: The view at night from the balcony of THD’s room, 709.
In any case, the higher the floor, the more striking the view and the better the perspective on the ET. THD was in 709, but was quite surprised at the difference one floor makes. From 809 the view was even better.
The Pullman Eiffel Tower is a business hotel, but THD found that the location makes it a good bivouac for the leisure traveler as well. It’s just back from the Seine, an easy walk to Trocadero, which of course has the classic Tower view, and the Musée d’Orsay. For the sportsman, the hotel lies a nice jog (six miles round-trip) from Notre Dame.
The rooms are have a clean, modern design (below)—very much like a Pullman sleeper in their wisely economical use of space—and done in gray, but with splashes of color (orange desk chair, baby blue chair).
For all of its modernist looks—the hotel was built in 1966 as a Hilton and was renovated in 2009 when it became a Pullman—the Pullman Eiffel Tower is a landmark in Paris hotel history. It was the first big hotel built in the city after World War Two, the first to have air conditioning, and believe it or not, the first hotel to have a bathroom in every room. That’s right, as late as 1966 even Paris’ top hotels had rooms that shared a bath.
And one final irony: The room with the best view of the Eiffel Tower is a meeting room on the 10th floor.