Review: Shangri-La Paris

Introduction: Pulling Off A Very Special Surprise Trip
Review: St. Regis New York
How I Pulled Off A Surprise Trip… Sort Of
Review: Air Serbia Business Class A330 New York To Belgrade
Review: Aman Sveti Stefan Montenegro
Review: Dining At Aman Sveti Stefan
Review: Shangri-La Paris
Review: Lufthansa Lounge Paris Airport
Review: Lufthansa First Class 747-8 Frankfurt To Los Angeles


Paris s a city with a lot of top notch luxury hotels, though they come at a steep cost. The good news for points enthusiasts is that there are some great points properties where you can redeem points, like the Prince de Galles, which is a Starwood Luxury Collection property, or the Park Hyatt Paris.

While I’m sure those would have been great, I wanted to make this really special. I was planning to propose to Ford in Paris, so figured trying to find a great hotel that has rooms with terraces overlooking the Eiffel Tower would be amazing.

I know, that’s cheesy as hell, but Ford loves Paris, and I knew he’d at last appreciate the thought I put into it.

After doing some research, it looked like the Shangri-La Paris has the best Eiffel Tower views. The going rate for one of their Eiffel Tower View Terrace Rooms would have been 1,600EUR per night for our three night stay. However, I managed to do significantly better than that.

I used the Shangri-La Luxury Circle program to get a better deal. By booking through Luxury Circle I could get a third night free, a confirmed upgrade at the time of booking, a welcome amenity, and a property credit equal to 10% of the cost of one night.

So I booked one category below the Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room — the Eiffel Tower View Room — which cost 1,400EUR. When you factor in the third night free, I ended up paying 930EUR per night, and we got free breakfast every morning, plus a 140EUR property credit (plus I earned points in the Shangri-La Golden Circle program).

Yes, that’s a lot of money. While I think really splurging on resorts can make sense, in general I don’t place as much value on city hotels, since you typically spend more time outside the hotel. As much as I was tempted to redeem points at the Park Hyatt, I figured I could save that for our next trip to Paris, and make this extra special. After all, in a few decades I’m (hopefully) more likely to remember what a special stay this was and how nicely the setting contributed to that, rather than having spent $3,000 more than I had to (or in reality more like $1,650 more than I had to, when you consider the alternative — the Park Hyatt would have cost 30,000 points per night, and I value those points at ~1.5 cents each).

Now, let’s get to the actual stay, and whether or not this was all worth it. We took an Uber from Charles de Gaulle Airport to the hotel, which took only about 40 minutes thanks to light traffic on a Saturday.

The exterior of the Shangri-La is stunning… I think the pictures speak for themselves.


Shangri-La Paris exterior


Shangri-La Paris exterior

The bellmen were super attentive, and greeted us the second we stepped out of the car, helped us with our bags, and walked us to reception.

The lobby was every bit as gorgeous as the hotel’s exterior — just wow! The pictures don’t really do justice to how grand and pristine everything feels.


Shangri-La Paris lobby


Shangri-La Paris lobby


Shangri-La Paris lobby


Shangri-La Paris lobby lounge

Reception was located about halfway down the lobby to the left, and across from that was the concierge desk. The associate checking us in was delightful — often I find myself somewhat annoyed at the check-in experience at luxury hotels, but she struck the right balance of just about everything.


Shangri-La Paris reception

Within a few minutes we were checked in and escorted up to our room. The hotel has a few different wings, and there was a single (small) elevator for the section of the hotel in which we were staying. Our room was on level six, the hotel’s top floor.


Shangri-La Paris elevator

We walked down the rectangular hallway, and our room (#64) was at one of the corners.


Shangri-La Paris hallway


Shangri-La Paris room exterior


Shangri-La Paris floorplan

The room featured an entryway with the main part of the room to the left, and the bathroom, closet, and stairs to the right.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room entrance

The room was gorgeous. There was a king size bed which was divine. There are comfortable beds and then there was this bed — my goodness, I slept so well.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room

At the foot of the bed was a couch, and across from that was a chair as well as a console with a TV on it.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room entrance


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room couch


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room seat

Next to the TV was a Nespresso machine.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room Nespresso machine

Below that was the minibar.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room minibar

On the side of the room by the windows was a vanity.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room vanity

Across from that was a desk with a mirror (so that you can see the Eiffel Tower even when facing the wall).


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room desk

There was a nice welcome amenity waiting for us, consisting of a bottle of Veuve and a plate of cherries and peaches. That’s a very nice champagne to get as a welcome amenity.


Shangri-La Paris welcome amenity

There was also a welcome letter… addressed to “Mr. and Mrs. Schlapping[sic].”


Shangri-La Paris welcome note

Then there was the most disorganized welcome letter I’ve ever seen. First they address me as “Mr. Schlappig,” then as “Mr. Bell,” and then they say the travel agency I booked through was “The Smart Flyer,” and then they say it was “The Travel Society.” While very minor, what horrible attention to detail. How hard can it be to copy & paste? It’s one thing to make one mistake, but to have three mistakes with the welcome letter is sort of unacceptable.


Shangri-La Paris welcome note

Anyway, on the opposite side of the room entrance was a large closet area.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room closet

Then next to that was the large bathroom. It featured double sinks, a soaking tub, a partitioned off toilet, and a walk-in shower.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room bathroom


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room bathroom


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room bathroom


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room bathtub


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room shower


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room toilet

Toiletries were provided by BVLGARI. There was even a diffuser with the Shangri-La signature scent, which I loved.


Shangri-La Paris BVLGARI toiletries


Shangri-La Paris BVLGARI toiletries

The room was gorgeous, though the highlight was what was waiting for us at the top of a long staircase. When I booked this room I figured there might be a small balcony attached directly to the room, or something. Nope.

Instead there were a couple of dozen steps leading up a level.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room stairs


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace Room stairs

WOW! The terrace had a dining table with two chairs, two loungers for sunbathing, and an umbrella.


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace


Shangri-La Paris Eiffel Tower View Terrace

Here’s the view from our terrace by day:


View from the Shangri-La Paris


View from the Shangri-La Paris

And by night:


View from the Shangri-La Paris

There’s no way to describe that other than magical. We spent a couple of hours up there every day working, talking, having drinks, etc.

The terrace exceeded my expectations, though if I had one piece of feedback, it’s that the deck is in need of a repaint and power wash. The furniture also didn’t feel quite as high quality as you’d expect. Very minor in the grand scheme of things, though.

Anyway, the associate from check-in escorted us to our room and then asked if we wanted to partake in the signature Shangri-La tea service, which we did. Within a few minutes some tea was brought to our room.


Shangri-La Paris welcome tea

For booking through Luxury Circle we were entitled to complimentary breakfast, which we could have either in the room or restaurant. Given our terrace, we of course elected to have it in our room. The breakfast menu read as follows:

Is there anything better than breakfast in France?


Shangri-La Paris room service breakfast

Or perhaps more accurately, breakfast in France on a terrace overlooking the Eiffel Tower on a gorgeous morning?


Breakfast with a view from the Shangri-La Paris

The food was phenomenal. They just don’t make food in the rest of the world like they do in France. From the bread to the eggs to the yogurt… YUM.


Shangri-La Paris breakfast bakery basket


Shangri-La Paris breakfast fresh fruit salad


Shangri-La Paris breakfast omelet

Our second morning we decided to have breakfast in the hotel’s restaurant, just to mix things up. The restaurant has a beautiful courtyard setting with lots of natural light.


Shangri-La Paris restaurant

The restaurant breakfast menu read as follows:

I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.


Shangri-La Paris breakfast


Shangri-La Paris breakfast


Shangri-La Paris breakfast

We also ordered a crepe to share. When in Paris…


Shangri-La Paris breakfast

The last morning we went for room service breakfast again (though it was raining, so we ate inside).


Shangri-La Paris room service breakfast #2

In terms of the hotel’s other facilities, there’s a Chi Spa, which is also where the gym and pool are located.


Shangri-La Paris Chi Spa

The hotel’s gym is small, but has good equipment, and is open 24/7.


Shangri-La Paris gym


Shangri-La Paris gym


Shangri-La Paris gym

The real treat is the hotel’s pool. It’s not every day you see a city hotel with a pool this gorgeous.


Shangri-La Paris pool


Shangri-La Paris pool

The other thing that impressed me about the hotel was the service. Everyone we interacted with was exceptional, and it’s rare that I say that in France. From the front office to the concierge to the restaurant staff, everyone was polished as could be, and genuinely wanted to please.

Now… the hotel’s location. I’ll be the first to admit I’m not an expert on Paris. However, I feel like there’s a bit of a tradeoff when it comes to wanting Eiffel Tower views. For these purposes the location was perfect, since I wanted the views, but I did find us more often than having to either walk 45 minutes or take a 10-15 minute Uber ride to get where we wanted to go. Personally I think the Park Hyatt, Le Bristol, etc., have a better location, but that’s a highly subjective topic.

Shangri-La Paris bottom line

Overall I was very impressed by this hotel. What a gorgeous property, from the exterior, to the public spaces, to the rooms. Just lovely. The terrace room we had exceeded my expectations by a long shot, as I didn’t think the terrace would be that nice. All the food we had at the hotel was delicious, and the service was excellent across the board.

There were a few minor areas for improvement, and the location isn’t necessarily ideal, but overall this exceeded my expectations.

But… was it worth it?

For this stay, yes. I can’t even begin to say how special it was to have a terrace overlooking the Eiffel Tower. For an occasion like this, it was worth it to me. I’m lucky enough that I can afford to splurge like this for a special occasion, and for both of us this was unforgettable. I’d always rather spend money on experiences than material things, and in this case it was money well spent. Yes, I (subtly) proposed on the terrace, and yes, he said yes.

While I won’t be making a habit of staying here, I’d highly recommend this for a special occasion if you have the means to do so. Otherwise there are plenty of other great hotels in Paris as well.

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Comments

  1. Gorgeous views… Oh, how I miss living Paris…

    Congrats on your engagement !!! It seems like knly yesterday I met 15-year old LuckyCoins in DC… Mazel tov to the happy couple !!!

  2. Mazal Tov.

    This review and your previous one (Aman) reinforce the fact that playing the point game with the American Chain hotels comes with a sacrifice.
    You keep missing out on Shangri-La, Peninsula and MO to name a few.

    Personally being based in Asia does allow me to enjoy the better properties of the Chains, nontheless, I do tend to find that when i go boutique or local it’s always a superior experience.

  3. Congrats Ben & Ford, happy for you both! Would love more detail about the proposal!

    Property looks nice, maybe I am spoiled from your other reviews/hotels but again, outside of the terrace this doesn’t warrant the high price in my eyes. Also, $50 for continental breakfast is WILD, even in France with great pastries. Glad it was included for you 2.

  4. Been reading your blog for years. I rarely comment, but given the outcome of this post, I needed to! Congratulations! Wishing you both all the best.

  5. Great review. Congrats. Given the costs of luxury hotels in Paris I would say that your room was a bargain!!! As always it’ll b an experience thst you won’t ever forget!

    Fdw

  6. @Lucky
    First of all my congratulations, too.
    However, believe it or not but you need a special permit to publish any night view of the Eiffeltower. There still is a copyright on the lightshow so any publishing of the tower enlighted has to be licensed by the artist.

  7. Yes, I (subtly) proposed on the terrace, and yes, he said yes.

    The honeymoon is going to be epic! Congratulations!

  8. Ben, I’ve followed you for years but usually don’t comment but wanted to say Congratulations on your big life event! I wish you guys every happiness.

    I was happy to see this review as I’ve always felt the Shangri-La brand is one of the very best out there! I hope we’ll see more of them!

  9. I’d echo Patrick’s comment about the insane price of breakfast if it’s not included in the room rate. Shocking, really.

    But actually none of that matters, does it? Congratulations to you both. 🙂

  10. Love reading your reviews, they’ve always had that personal touch that’s memorable and this is a stellar example. Congratulations to you both!

  11. I’ve read OMAAT everyday for the last 3 and a half years. Two times a day. When I get up in the morning and before I go to sleep. I have read your blog while staying at the best hotels and when flying the best airlines in the highest class. Congratulations on your proposal :DD

    – Varun Susarla

  12. What a memorable review – the personal angle makes it very special.
    Paris is beautiful.
    A big congrats to both of you!

  13. That omelette looks rank.
    This might be the first time I’m saying this but this room was actually money well spent given the occasion. Though it is a bit petty blogging about it just to say it’s a business expense 😉
    Congrats nonetheless

  14. Not sure what it is about hotels in Paris putting suites on top floors; that’s where the ceilings are low (built for the service staff in the old days). If it wasn’t for the terrace, I’d have been disappointed. I bet the first floor suites are the grandest (but since you wanted the view, you got a great one)

  15. I can only imagine the elation felt by your parents their boy is now in a committed monogamous relationship. Cherish the moment!

  16. Congratulations! That is “the” way to do it. Terrace is amazing. View at night must have been priceless.

  17. Congratulations to you two! But i have to admit, that you broke French Law. The French Copyright Law is very strict. Until some years ago it was prohibited to photograph the Eiffel Tower at all! But now Copyright for the “art” of the Tower run out, so you can make photos of the Eiffel Tower when the sun shines. But at night…the art of the light installations still have copyright on them.

    But still a nice review

  18. Congratulations, Ben! My husband and I also got engaged in Paris. Such an amazing and romantic city. I wish you and Ford a life of much happiness and love.

  19. Congratulations again! The room looks superb and the terrace amazing! Like others have said above, it’s a bit shocking that the breakfast wasn’t included in the room rate.
    Looking forward to the wedding and honeymoon reviews – I’m sure they will be epic!

  20. Have to laugh at the comments on copyright law. There are tens of thousands of tourists a day taking photos of the tower, every day of the year, both day and night. Probably 20% of first time visitors to Paris come specifically to take a selfie at the tower.

    The point of this law is to make people doing commercial documentaries, or say TV commercials, pay for the rights. Lucky will not be hearing from the French copyright police anytime soon. 😉

  21. That’s a lovely terrace! The hotel architecture and decor reminds me of the Carlton Cannes, beautiful and grand. Thanks for the detailed review.
    And Congratulations 🙂

  22. Congratulations on your engagement, and I think it’s a good thing to at least occasionally forget about what’s the best points deal, or just squeezing the most value using other means (which, while often getting pretty decent options, tends to exclude some of the top options). Sometimes you have to just open your wallet, and pay (you only live once right), acknowledging a law of diminishing returns (you can pay a lot more, for something just moderately better) – you don’t get engaged every day after all.

    It’s one thing I love about Paris – its often an architecturally beautiful city, much more than just the Effiel Tower, as iconic as it is.

  23. Congratulations Lucky and Ford, I’m so happy for both of you!

    If I get to rank all your posts, this would be on my top 10. Seriously. I love your notes and pictures you took at this property.

  24. Congratulations to you both ! I love your blog and this review. I have heard that this property is favored by guests from the Gulf region. What is your take on the clientele ?

    And why don’t you start a hotel blog specifically for discerning travellers ? Sites like Trip Advisor cater to a huge range of travellers with widely varying standards.

  25. Congrats again! That being said, the room looks extremely dated and in desperate need of refurbishment. Especially given the price.

  26. Congrats! To such a nice and hardworking person! Thanks for all of your advice over the years

  27. Congratulations on your proposal Ben and Ford and I agree with you the Shangri-La Paris is a nice hotel though not the best location.

  28. Congrats to you and Ford.
    You stayed at my second favourite hotel in Paris.
    Why do all beds in Paris gently sag in the middle, like the king in your picture?

  29. HI Ben!

    Maybe i misunderstood, but how did you have access to the view terrace if you booked the category below, the view room?

    Thanks!

  30. Lucky – first of all, congratulations!! So happy for you, and that you’ve found someone who loves the crazy lifestyle you lead as much as you do. Paris is such a special place, too – I used to live there, so it has a soft spot in my heart.

    While you did get great views ,the area around the Eiffel tower is not that great location-wise otherwise – it’s a bit of a ways away from “everything else.” Then again, Paris has an *excellent* public transit system, so it really doesn’t matter where you’re staying. I don’t often say this, but I’m surprised you chose not to take the metro to get places. In the case of Paris, the metro’s efficiency and coverage is such that you really are much better off getting where you need to go using it rather than using Uber (especially since Paris does still have a few of those old winding streets). Plus, there’s that whole thing about experiencing the city as the locals do … funny, when you use Uber anywhere else I usually don’t mind, but this one time you took an Uber in Paris and something in the back of my head went “how could you not have used the metro??”

  31. What a view! Money well spent in Paris. And lots of congrats on the engagement! Shangri-la Paris will be happy to make the list of your most memorable experiences! 🙂

  32. @mark the bed might be sagging as the king bed might have 2 single mattreses with a mattress cover over them.

  33. Been reading your blog for a while now, and couldn’t resist posting a message of congratulations to you both. I’m sure you’ll (continue to) be very happy together!

  34. For the nightly room rate, I hope everything in the mini-bar was free. And the good bottle of champagne was the least they could do for that price. I’d be curious to know what the occupancy rate is, at it doesn’t take many guests paying that rate to make serious money every night.

    It’s nice to see that Lucky finally had a normal experience without special treatment arranged ahead of time by SPG.

  35. Congrats…

    The Manager probably assumed you’r stupid already for paying this much for that so you wouldn’t noticed these little mistakes here and there.

    As we say in France, “laissons les Ricains financer nos vacances…MDR”

    Keep making the world laugh again cow boys!!

    A+

  36. Great review – as always….!!! Congrats to both of you on the future life together. No better place than Paris to pop the question! Keep up the good work!

  37. @747 – check out the pic again. You can see the two twins that make up the King,
    each with a gentle sag. Again, like most in Paris. Even the Ambassador’s residence.

  38. Why is there no toilet paper on the roll in the water closet picture? Seriously, at that price, they should give you at least two rolls. 😉 I think you’ve stayed in better hotels and better rooms, but that view is phenomenal and basically 95% of the cost. I can’t believe you didn’t eat all your meals on the terrace!

    Congrats on the engagement and Best wishes!

  39. Congrats on the engagement Ben!! I’m so happy to see how you’ve progressed over the years of reading this blog!!

  40. Congrats, Ben and Ford! I rarely comment, but have been reading for probably 7 or 8 years, so very happy for you guys!

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