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Tasty Side to Life Tours Website

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Les Crayeres, Reims- The perfect hotel for a night in Champagne


This hotel is well.... kind of, sort of just plain out I.N.C.R.E.D.I.B.L.E. http://www.lescrayeres.com/uk.html. I just went on a tour of the rooms so I could be certain of the quality when referring this property to clients who come to the region and I was definitely blown away. I understand now why the hotel Les Crayeres has won a plethora of awards over the last 10 yrs. These awards include: Number one Hotel in the World in 2002, Best Dining Experience by Zagat in 2004, Highest Ranking Hotel in the Europe for Service in 2005 by Travel and Leisure, Best Hotel in France in 2007 and Best Hotel Restaurant in Europe by VilleGiature.


The hotel was built in 1885 by Mrs Pommery of Pommery Champagne http://www.pommery.com/, inhabited by her and her family and then partially destroyed by the German forces in WWI. The park in front was transformed into an artillery ground. In the 1920's the castle was restored. In the 1940's the Royal Air Force occupied the castle and a German aerial bomb attack was attempted but the bomb was unsuccessful and landed in nearby vineyards. In 1945 the American army arrived at the Castle and used it as a relaxation point and the terrace as a dance floor. In the following years the castle was inhabited by a count (Charles of Colignac) and by a prince (Guy of Polignac) who was the CEO of Pommery at the time.

La Rotonde Bar. It is an absolute must to have a drink here whether you decide to stay at the hotel or not. It will leave you speechless.

Finally, In 1980 the Castle was purchased by the Gardinier family and renovated again. Then in 1983 the Castle was opened to the public as a restaurant/hotel with head chef Gerad Boyer who soon received 3 Michelin stars. Since 2010 Phillipe Mille who is the winner of the 2009 Boucuse de Bronze has take over both the kitchens at Le Parc and Les Crayeres. Unfortunately along with a departed chef naturally comes departed stars :( Yet, I believe they are soon to come as the food is still delightful and hopefully they will be listed in the Michelin guide this year. Hotel prices range from 320-over 600 euro. The basic room has not been renovated but is still quite large and has a beautiful ambience. Check out the pics below!

The first room was a beatiful suite with a large entry, beautiful renovated bathroom and even a booze music system by the bath. How gorgeous is the red wallpapered entry?



The Entry to the 2nd floor and with a gorgeous flower vase and a beautiful tapestry on the wall



The basic room which is 330 euro a night- Not renovated but still large and beautiful






Another suite is shown below. This suite actually has a nice luxurious couch that makes into a bed and actually can sleep 4. This room is between 500 and 600 euro a night. It has the most amazing French, crisp, fine and luxurious feel to it. Wouldn't you love to come back to this comfy room after a day of Champagne tasting?






And a similar beautiful suite below with historic french paintings, beautiful toile wall paper, thick tapestries, plasma tv and renovated bath fitted with hermes products





The property a few weeks before Christmas

When people ask me to take them out for a day of private tasting this is one of the incredible Chateaus I refer them to stay the night at! A trip fit with this chateau, the food inside, the Champagne at private producers + escargot and foie gras farms visits really creates a surreal experience.



4 comments:

  1. Oh, how fabulous. In the new year I'll think about contacting you for a trip to drink champagne -- I mean "discover" the champagne region.

    Lovely blog btw.

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  2. We happened to stay at Les Crayeres last week for a night. We really liked our room and the staff was great. A couple of other things to note however - although surrounded by a park, the botel is in the city and at a busy intersection. There is some traffic noise in the rooms. This not a country Relais. We thought the restaurant fell short of expectations - while the meal was elaborate there was nothing innovative or memorable, which is probably why it now has no Michelin stars. The wine list is very good however. Finally the bar area is beautiful, but served me the worst martini I've had anywhere in world!

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  3. So great that you just stayed and are able to share your experience! Yeah that is unfortunately the push and pull of staying in Reims proper. There are a few other great Chateaus that are really right in the spanking middle of the country but then you are a bit far from a city, 45 min drive from the best champagne tasting, a bit of a journey from Cathedral touring, etc. So, you have to make that choice. Incredible Les Crayeres or old chateau in the middle of the country with perhaps a more tranquil ambience. The resto's cuisine at times is a bit too creative (I'm not a huge fan of the new vacuum sealed cooking techniques due to texture). Yet, the presentation and service at the resto is superb and its so beatiful inside. Hmm interesting about the bar. France is not the best place to drink hard alcohol but at a nice hotel like this everything should have been great. The only Martini's i drink in france are the just the plain ol cold Martini liquor that is soft and not too intense. A Martini here to them is that brand of alchol. Otherwise, most bartenders in France have no idea how to make a good martini. Thanks for stopping by the site and commenting!

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  4. We visited Reims last June (took the train up from Paris for the day), and would love to return one of these days! We had lunch at Les Crayeres' little brasserie, which is on-site but 'round back. It was a wonderful meal, and everyone had a great time. Can't afford the hotel or its main restaurant, so I enjoyed your photographs. Thx!

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