Inside the Parisian hotel where rooms transform into private cinemas

Sit back and relax (Picture: Eric Martin/Romain Ricard/Eric Garault/Pasco/Hotel Paradiso)

The big screen’s been lowered, the projector starts whirring and suddenly my mate and I are plunged into darkness.

From our very comfortable position (on a huge bed, no less), we have access to various snacks – everything from classic popcorn to our own French-style picnic of fresh baguette, slabs of cheese and several slices of charcuterie – not to mention a delightful bottle of €5 wine.

Then Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon appear and we sit back to enjoy our own private screening of the classic 1959 comedy Some Like It Hot.

But this isn’t because we’ve paid a fortune to book somewhere fancy. No, we are in our own room in Hotel Paradiso, a unique hotel/cinema hybrid in central Paris where it’s all about the silver screen. It contains a public movie theatre showing the latest releases, plus 35 rooms and two suites in the seven floors above that convert into their own little screening rooms.

It’s the brainchild of brothers Elishaand and Nathanaël Karmitz, who run the arthouse cinema chain MK2. They wanted to bring back what they felt was the lost art of truly immersing yourself in a movie, rather than just watching one on TV or a mobile phone.

The idea is that you can either pick the film you want from a selection of DVDs that sit on a shelf in every corridor, or refer to the in-room directory – designed to look like a screenplay – which lists all the films available to view (over 2,000, from all countries and genres). Once you’ve chosen, you call reception on the old-fashioned black rotary phone – dialling, what else, 007 – and they deliver it.

The rooms

The idea came from brothers Elishaand and Nathanaël Karmitz, who run the arthouse cinema chain MK2 (Picture: Romain Ricard)
Some people book a room just for the cinema experience (Picture: Eric Martin)

The rooms and suites are all slightly different in size and layout, with a separate two-storey space called The Loft that sleeps up to six. Ours has a terrace looking out on to the Parisian skyline (if we squint, we can kid ourselves we can see the Eiffel Tower), raw plaster walls, a vintage movie posters and an iPad to controls the lighting as well as film apps such as Netflix, Disney+ and Canal+. Our bathroom is, essentially, separated from the main room by a glass wall, while the Nuxe toiletries smell divinely of honey.

The tribe

The hotel even has a full-on theatre showing the latest releases (Picture: Eric Garault / Pasco)
This rooftop would be incredible in summer (Picture: Romain Ricard)

Terrifyingly fashionable young Parisians who, apparently, like to book in just for the day to watch arty films (of course they do) and a range of movie-loving tourists – mainly couples or pairs of friends, like us.

The local vibe

The hotel sits in a fittingly up-and-coming neighbourhood (Picture: Hotel Paradiso)
The hotel isn’t far from the famed Bastille area (Picture: Getty Images)

The hotel is located in Nation, an up-and-coming neighbourhood featuring wide boulevards, a vast circular green space and a smattering of cool shops and restaurants.

The historic Bastille area is within walking distance as is the swanky Place des Vosges, lined with elegant hotels particuliers – or townhouses.

So-hip-it-hurts Le Marais district is also a stroll away, with its cool concept stores, the parfumier Juliette Has a Gun and beauty boutiques like Kiehl’s.

The Centre Pompidou is not much further, with both permanent and regularly changing exhibitions. But with all those films to watch, will you really venture out?

Rooms from £117pn at Hotel Paradiso; London to Paris starts from £39 one way in standard class on Eurostar

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