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).

News
Russell Brand was in typically combative form during his promotional interview with Newsnight's Evan Davis
peopleReports that Brand could stand for Mayor on an 'anti-politics' ticket
News
The clocks go forward an hour at 1am on Sunday 30 March
news
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor finds himself in a forest version of London in Doctor Who episode 'In the Forest of the Night'
TVReview: Is the Doctor ever going stop frowning? Apparently not.
News
Voluminous silk drawers were worn by Queen Victoria
newsThe silk underwear is part of a growing trade in celebrity smalls
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
footballMatch report: Real fight back to ruin Argentinian's debut
News
Candidates with surnames that start with an A have an electoral advantage
newsVoters are biased towards names with letters near start of alphabet
Arts and Entertainment
Isis with Lord Grantham (Hugh Bonneville)
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Jay James
TVReview: Performances were stale and cheesier than a chunk of Blue Stilton left out for a month
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
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

    Junior Application Support Engineer (ERP / SSRS)

    £23000 - £30000 per annum + pension, 25days holiday: Ashdown Group: An industr...

    IT Systems Analyst / Application Support Engineer (ERP / SSRS)

    £23000 - £30000 per annum + pension, 25days holiday: Ashdown Group: An industr...

    SCRUM Master

    £30 - 50k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a SCRUM Master to joi...

    Franchise Support Assistant

    £13,520: Recruitment Genius: As this role can be customer facing at times, the...

    Day In a Page

    Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

    Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

    Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
    Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

    Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

    The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
    New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

    New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

    Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
    Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

    Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

    The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
    DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

    Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

    Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
    The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

    Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

    The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
    Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

    Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

    The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
    11 best sonic skincare brushes

    11 best sonic skincare brushes

    Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
    Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

    Paul Scholes column

    I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
    Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

    Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

    While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
    Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

    Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

    Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
    How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

    A crime that reveals London's dark heart

    How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?