Strictly in terms of comfort and amenities, the Abbaye must rate well below other 4-star hotels I've stayed at in France---even, most recently, in the provinces: Thin scratchy towels, tiny pouf pillows, no minibar to chill drinks in the room, no clock, no instructions on how to make phonecalls, inconvenient lighting (with bulbs burned out) and writing area. . . . A breakfast of bread served with tiny packets of industrial butter and tiny jam jars---Continental business class has a definite edge here.
But all of that is obviously considered secondary to the relentless Olde Worlde "charm": the hushed smiling obsequious greetings, newspapers in the paneled salon, tea and breakfast in the lovely garden. All of that apparently goes down very well with the largely American clientele---at the same time used to being cossetted, rather unsure of itself, and embarrassingly appreciative. [I'm sure the words "discreet luxury" appear in some article in Conde Nast Sophisticated Traveler]. If they enjoy sitting in the garden staring at an ivy-covered wall in preference to the rich street-theatre of neighborhood cafes, then they are well-served here. And the neighborhood fits well with this ethos: If the 5eme is the universities, and the 7eme the haute bourgeoisie and the museums, then the 6th is Sonia Rykel and Armani. . .
All of this would really be rather humorous if it were not for the outrageously steep rates, which take away any incentive for laughter.More
- Free Wifi
- Room Service