Designed to resemble an ocean liner, Hotel Molitor in Paris was built in 1929 by architect Lucien Pollet. Take a look at its contemporary interiors
It wasn’t just about preserving history; the restoration of Piscine Molitor into the glamorous 124-room hotel was about bringing to life its essence. Every corner tells the tale of its journey and every detail recounts its legacy which includes being inaugurated by Olympic athlete Jonny Weismuller and the unveiling of the first modern bikini designed by Louis Réard in 1946.
Built in 1929 by famed architect Lucien Pollet, it was designed to resemble an ocean liner with a three storey building of ‘cabins’ surrounding the outdoor pool and Art Deco stained glass windows decorating the façade. After it shut down in 1989, the complex became the hub for street art and graffiti artists. It is these two vastly distinct styles that designer Jean-Philippe Nuel has restored in the old structure while adding contemporary details to the new builds.
The team salvaged whatever original features they could like the ochre-yellow façade with white railings, the indoor and outdoor pools, Art Deco vitrines, leaded-glass windows, mosaics and lamps, the ceiling in the restaurant and the glass-enclosed ticket office. They photographed the ruined building covered in graffiti before they started and used these in the décor. Another focus on street art is the graffiti-covered Rolls Royce customised by artist JonOne in the hotel lobby.
The ground floor is filled with diverse spaces - a bricolage of floor tiles, colourful retro chairs, Art Deco motifs, period posters, and furniture found at flea markets. Having added two top storeys, the rooms are pared back in comparison – clean lines, simple furnishings and a neutral colour scheme of white and brown which only sees a few splashes of bright yellow. Sleek lamps and chrome fixtures in the bathrooms round off this contemporary look.