Bonjour Green Paris! Hotel Gavarni

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By Paige Donner

Tucked away at 5, rue Gavarni, just of off of the thriving, bustling shopping street of rue de Passy, in Paris’s XVIth arrondissement, is the Hotel Gavarni. A five-minute walk from the Eiffel Tower, this thoroughly modernized historical hotel is independently owned and boasts “boutique” from every nook—that’s from its glass-roofed, heated breakfast terrace to its jacuzzi tubs to its rooftop suites.

French deco charm greets you as you enter the heavy-glass, iron-filigreed automatic swinging door, overhung with the original 1907 glass and iron awning. The Hotel Gavarni; and the street it is on, is named after the artist, Gavarni, whose fine pencil and ink original artwork dating from the early 1900s can be seen throughout the hotel. With 21 rooms and four roomy suites, two of which have direct views onto the Eiffel Tower, the hotel is cozy. A couple of nights spent at Gavarni and you truly feel its home-away-from-home vibe

The hotel also extends such services à la carte, where you can pick and choose from a menu of extras, such as Metro Passes for the day, use of a Vélib’ bicycle to see the Paris sights, and even Museum Passes so you can spend some quality cultural time at your choice of the nearby world-class museums. Nearby museums include the Modern Museum of Art, Quai d’Orsay Museum, Wine Museum, Marmottan (Monet) Museum, and the nearby Fashion Museum, all within walking distance of Hotel Gavarni. Ask for what you want when you make your reservations. And if you need an airport or train station pickup, the hotel will do that for you too, in their Hybrid Prius.

To think that Hotel Gavarni is just a cosy, chic, graciously staffed, stylish, three-star charming boutique hotel in Paris’s chic-est Passy district would be missing an entirely important point. And that point is that Hotel Gavarni was the first independent hotel in Paris to earn the European EcoLabel certification. It is the strictest green certification to comply with, and in the world’s most visited city, averaging 27 million tourists each year, the fact that a 25-room independently owned hotel made it its mission to be Green, but seriously green, is an accomplishment to stop and take note of.

Hotel Gavarni is part of what is being established as The Group Green Hotel Paris. The Green Hotel Paris Group acquired an additional property in the same neighborhood last year: the Hotel Eiffel Trocadéro is a 4-star property that perches just across the street from the Trocadéro and is graced by the Benjamin Franklin statue in its “front yard.” It is in the process of going through the requisite upgrades to earn its European EcoLabel certification. Plans are to gradually expand property acquisitions that will give the millions of travelers to the City of Light an authentically, and passionately, green option when they book their accommodations with the Green Hotel Group Paris.

Some of the eco-friendly practices Gavarni maintains: They offset their carbon footprint through the foundation established by Yann Arthus Bertrand, Action Carbone. But that’s not the only or even most significant, thing they do. They also: provide organic breakfasts which include fresh fruit, jams and baguettes and Fair Trade coffee and tea; they use 100% biodegradable detergents for all cleaning products; they provide 100% organic cotton sheets and towels; recycling is encouraged throughout the hotel and in all the hotel rooms; they compensate hotel staff when they use public transportation options. The closest metro stops are Passy and Trocadero, and the nearest busline takes you directly across town to Gare de l’Est, the station from which the Eurostar departs.

“Hotel Gavarni is the size of a large house. All of our small actions can resonate with our guests, so they can copy them at home,” explains Green Hotel Group’s managing director, Xavier Moraga, the champion of the hotel’s eco philosophy and practices. He doesn’t just think in terms of his job or his business, either. He approaches green on a community and municipal level.

In November 2010, the entire fourth floor of the Hotel Gavarni received a state-of-the-art eco upgrade. The showers installed use hyper water-efficient valves and technology, resulting in less than half the water usage of normal Parisian bathrooms and thus half the cost as well; the decor is chic and modern with each room distinctly decorated in soft pinks and fluffy down duvets or pale silver metallic see-through curtains offset with subtle grays and beiges for accent furniture upholstery and bed covers. Modern. Tasteful. Chic….and Green! Hotel Gavarni, Paris.

Hotel Gavarni

5, rue Gavarni, Paris 16th

Paige Donner is the founding editor of Greening Paris. Please click on her name to read her profile and to view more of her stories published in BonjourParis.

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