24-Hour Room Service: Trianon Palace, Versailles

Versailles isn't a destination you'd automatically associate with moderation or self-restraint. The chateau itself is so wildly opulent that during its heyday it required a quarter of the national income of France to maintain. Which is why the Trianon Palace, located on the edge of the royal park, seems like the perfect place for some unseemly over-indulgence.

Versailles isn't a destination you'd automatically associate with moderation or self-restraint. The chateau itself is so wildly opulent that during its heyday it required a quarter of the national income of France to maintain. Which is why the Trianon Palace, located on the edge of the royal park, seems like the perfect place for some unseemly over-indulgence.

However, for the last two decades the hotel's spa, originally opened by Givenchy in 1982, has been keeping coiffeured Parisians and international guests in trim. Forget over-indulgence, this is where you come to lose weight. Guests can soak, wrap, scrub and dip in any number of algae- or seaweed-based confections in one of 26 low-lit, high-tech beauty rooms. Treatments are administered by an army of suitably hushed, white-clad women, all in possession of a firm technique and a deft way with ointment. And for those who want to get thin quickly there's the "slimming escapade" menu that includes electro-osmosis, a hyperactive multi-jet bath and the delightful sounding slendertone drainage treatment.

Once you're done in the spa the hotel's restaurant Les Trois Marches carries on the good work. Although it's recognised by the Michelin guide as one of France's finest, chef Gerard Vie offers a "diet" version of the menu on request. It sounds terribly harsh to plump for the healthy option when presented with a menu of such wealth; you can almost hear the ghost of Marie Antoinette crying "let them eat cake". But when the mouthwatering slithers of scallops arrive followed by course after course of the tastiest morsels, it's worth remembering that the French idea of low calorie is a little different to ours.

The Trianon's interior designers have looked to the Palace of Versailles for inspiration. The hotel was renovated in 2001 and a Louis XV theme - vast columns, crystal chandeliers and marble floors - runs throughout.

The hotel was built in 1910 and quickly became a magnet for global A-listers, drawn by its luxury, its prestigious neighbour and the relative calm it offered from the tumult of Paris. During the First World War it was transformed into a hospital but once peace was restored it reverted to its original role. In 1940 it got caught up in the next War and, on the order of Marshall Goering, became the headquarters of the Luftwaffe. For those of a fanciful imagination, Marie Antoinette's isn't the only ghost you could meet on the stairs.

Still, such a chequered history hasn't put off the great, the good, the rich and the famous. Marlene Dietrich, Sarah Bernhardt, JD Rockefeller Jr and Paul Getty, and more recently Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman and Pierce Brosnan are just a few to have swept through its marble reception and into its lavish rooms.

LOCATION

Trianon Palace, 1 Boulevard de la Reine, 78000, Versailles, Paris (00 33 1 30 84 50 00; www.westin.com/trianonpalace)

Situated in the royal city on the edge of the park of the Palace of Versailles, the hotel is a five-minute walk from the chateau itself and a 20-minute drive from the Place de la Concorde in central Paris.

Time to international airport: the nearest airport is Orly International. A taxi ride costs €40 (£28.50) and the journey takes 20 minutes.

COMFORTABLE

The Trianon Palace Hotel contains 192 rooms, including 93 suites and apartments in the palace and 99 bedrooms in the pavilion, which was added in 1990 and is linked to the palace by an underground passageway. On the fifth and sixth floors of the palace there are two duplex suites that open out onto magnificent terraces with views over the Palace of Versailles. From my room on the fourth floor, French windows opened onto a small balcony overlooking the revered Marie Antoinette sheep grazing in the park of the chateau. Period tapestries and paintings, ornate fireplaces and plenty of marble provide the atmosphere of an elegant French mansion.

Freebies: Molton Brown toiletries, box of delicious creamy toffees, daily newspaper

Keeping in touch: all rooms are fitted with cable television, two direct dial phone lines and a data port, while WiFi (wireless internet connection) is available in some of the rooms.

THE BOTTOM LINE

Rooms cost from €230 (£164) including breakfast.

I'm not paying that: The nearby Hotel Ibis Paris Chateau de Versailles (00 33 4 89 88 40 05) has doubles from €95 (£68).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Baroness Lane-Fox warned that large companies such as have become so powerful that governments and regulators are left behind
techTech giants have left governments and regulators behind
News
Keith Fraser says we should give Isis sympathises free flights to join Isis (AFP)
news
Life and Style
'Prison Architect' players decide the fate of inmates
tech
Life and Style
A picture taken on February 11, 2014 at people walking at sunrise on the Trocadero Esplanade, also known as the Parvis des droits de l'homme (Parvis of Human Rights), in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
techGoogle celebrates Paris's iconic landmark, which opened to the public 126 years ago today
News
Cleopatra the tortoise suffers from a painful disease that causes her shell to disintegrate; her new prosthetic one has been custom-made for her using 3D printing technology
newsCleopatra had been suffering from 'pyramiding'
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Coachella and Lollapalooza festivals have both listed the selfie stick devices as “prohibited items”
music
Sport
Nigel Owens was targeted on Twitter because of his sexuality during the Six Nations finale between England and France earlier this month
rugbyReferee Nigel Owens on coming out, and homophobic Twitter abuse
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    SFL Group: Video Project Manager

    £24,000 pa, plus benefits: SFL Group: Looking for a hard-working and self-moti...

    Recruitment Genius: Hotel Reservations Assistant - French Speaking

    £16000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This rapidly expanding travel c...

    Recruitment Genius: Duty Manager - World-Famous London Museum

    £24000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Do you have a strong record of ...

    Recruitment Genius: Personal Assistant

    £24000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: You will have demonstrable unde...

    Day In a Page

    No postcode? No vote

    Floating voters

    How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

    By Reason of Insanity

    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
    Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

    Power dressing is back

    But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
    Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

    Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

    Caves were re-opened to the public
    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

    Vince Cable interview

    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
    Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

    Promises, promises

    But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
    The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

    The death of a Gaza fisherman

    He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
    Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
    Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

    The only direction Zayn could go

    We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
    Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

    Spells like teen spirit

    A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
    Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
    Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

    Licence to offend in the land of the free

    Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
    From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

    From farm to fork in Cornwall

    One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
    Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

    Robert Parker interview

    The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor