Passport to Paradise

le_monde_interiors_&_hotel_rooms_selection-1104I’m behind with my blog, having put my back out last Thursday, the morning after my elegant dinner at The Caledonian to mark the launch of the AERIN range by Aerin Lauder. I wasn’t staying in the Caley (that’s still on my to-do list) but a hop, skip and a stagger away at the opulent but contemporary Le Monde hotel.

It may have been only my second overnight stay at this luxurious boutique hotel – but there is a white leather, high booth in the downstairs bar that I have regarded as my Edinburgh office since the city’s jazz festival in July so I do feel very at home there.

At Le Monde, every room is a destination. On checking in, guests are presented with their “passport” and details of the city to which they’re being sent for the night. Last time, I was in Milan, a chic, spacious,  dark-walled room with striking, wall-length photos of supermodels – opposite, rather disconcertingly, a full-length mirror! And it had a bathroom, with waterfall shower, to die for.

Last week at Le Monde, I found myself in another city I’ve never visited before: Los Angeles.  This suite had a wall of black and white photos of movie star portraits, a Hollywood mirror with lightbulbs down each side – the kind Miss Piggy had in her dressing room – and a TV viewing area with a comfy white leather settee that would have made the perfect casting couch (had I had company). All that was missing was an Oscar statuette or two. The vibe was, as I saw it, 1970s LA. I could imagine Faye Dunaway lounging around in one of the white towelling robes a la her iconic Terry O’Neill “morning after” portrait.

And as for the bathroom, well, it made me feel wholly inadequate. Why? Because it was wasted on the solo bather … The circular bath had insets for three people – was it designed for one of Hugh Hefner’s Playboy parties, I wondered? – and a TV screen (one of three in the suite) on the wall beside it, at eye level. Still, at least I didn’t have to share the gorgeous-smelling Temple Spa goodies with anyone else ..

* Le Monde, 16 George Street, Edinburgh (0131 270 3900)

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