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Pershing Hall

Pershing Hall Façade

When I was studying at the convent, we had etiquette lessons: what to wear to a baptism, where to put the finger bowl… all of which I would fail miserably at. I was always fidgeting or daydreaming. My gang of “bad girl friends” and I would giggle or do exactly the opposite of the manners the nuns were trying to impart to us. There were just too many things to remember and do “right”. After some 20 years, I still place the forks and knives all wrong (which btw is different everywhere).

Sister Maria always says that as a host, we must always make our guests feel welcome. And we must always introduce people and include something about them so that guests can strike up a conversation about their hobby or a recent event etc. For guests coming from overseas, we should choose a place or make some dishes that are familiar to them. I didn’t really understand all that, until I was on the other side to appreciate what some of my good hosts have done.

This time, I had the opportunity to play host, when my friend Jodi came to visit. We went to Pershing Hall for drinks and dinner. Jodi is my benchmark New Yorker. She’s trendy, she’s chic. She likes to wine and dine and lives a fast life. The crowd at Pershing Hall is equally chic and trendy and well-dressed. Everyone has a BlackBerry, if not the latest Vertu and the best of manners. Even the wait staff is all smiles. Why don’t I see more of this on the Parisian streets?

Above all, I love Pershing Hall for its esthetical beauty.

Pershing Hall, the hotel, bar and restaurant is housed in the 19th century mansion occupied by the General “Black Jack” Pershing during WW1. It is a masterpiece by the French (woman) designer, Andrée Putman, who is famous for her sleek modernist designs. She designed the interior of the Concord planes for Air France, as well as fashion store interiors for Karl Lagerfeld, Azzedine Alaia and she also designs minimalist furniture. Pershing Hall is another one of her masterpieces, where she transformed an empire-era building for use in the modern, fast-paced Parisian life.

Walls have been replaced with floor-to-ceiling glass bead curtains. The stone walls and façades are illuminated with vivid colors of purple, pink, lime green, bright orange that change every so often. The floors flow smoothly and the constant stream of young “in” Parisians is well managed. I never felt suffocated or pressed into someone’s armpit. The hotel rooms are cream-colored and have very clean designs according to a friend who spent the night in one of the rooms.

Pershing Hall is one of my preferred meeting places in the Arc de Triomphe-Champs Elysees district. It has a formidable combination of virtues: old and new architecture, artistic gastronomy, long list of cocktails, champagne and wine, friendly wait staff, good French lounge music and lots of well dressed people.

What I recommend:
Arrive early and sip a glass of champagne at the bar or lounge on the 1st floor. Then proceed to dinner in the candle-lit courtyard, that has a wall of cascading plants. The maître’d tells me that there are about 300 varieties of plants on that wall. It is très romantique.

My dinner was: Roasted veal shank with creamy polenta (EUR35), melon granite (EUR12). Non-alcoholic fruit mixes (EUR15), alcoholic cocktails (EUR17-25), champagne (EUR20+).

Pershing Hall
49 rue Pierre Charron
75008, Paris
tel: 01 58 36 58 00
fax: 01 58 36 58 36
Click here for the website


I discovered the Pershinghall tuesday and I'm agree with you it's a very beautiful place, I took just one drink after dinner but the next time I'll try the restaurant.

Seb: Pershing Hall est tres branche, n'est pas? C'est cool.

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