Invited the hotel's inauguration, he was one of the first regulars of the Ritz, a perfect venue for contemplation, and a true "observatory" of Parisian life. Watching the world go by, and taking in the "air du temps" it is here that he found inspiration for his future characters. In the cosy and intimate setting of a private room, he often enjoyed the company of guests for dinner. His legendary friendship with the maître d'hotel Olivier Dabescat is depicted in "A la recherche du temps perdu" under the traits of Aimé, of the Grand Hotel of Balbec.
The Ritz Paris certainly lived up to the expectations of Coco Chanel, who embodied authentic elegance. The bond between Coco Chanel and the palace goes beyond the legend: " The Ritz is my home", proclaimed the famous designer, who would reside there from 1934 for over three decades, adding a personal touch to her appartments and Coromandel screens. The Ritz Paris, true to the spirit of Mademoiselle Chanel, remains to this day, a venue for prestigious private fashion shows for top Parisian designers.
Zelda forewarned Scott Fitzgerald, from the moment they met, that she would only marry him if he were to become famous…this became a reality with the astounding success of "This Side of Paradise". The couple led a bustling life, filled with trips around the globe and numerous friendships, a pure embodiement of the "années folles" and the era of Jazz. The author of "The Great Gatsby" wrote short stories, covered his muse in jewels and found new and eccentric ways of seducing her, in a romantic, passionate quest, forever admired and copied at the Ritz.
Faithful and loving guest of the Ritz Paris, Hemingway, winner of the 1954 littérature Nobel Prize, shared his passion for Paris with his readers in his works. First initiated by his friend Scott Fitzgerald, the hotel became the centre stage for the intrepid american author; the now legendary Hemingway Bar, is a tribute to his legacy.
When the Duke and Duchess of York disembarked from their boat, arriving for their sojourn in the French capital, they were greeted by the concierges of the Ritz Paris. Facing the Place Vendôme, their suite was configured to their liking by their designated staff. The Duke of Windsor made this haven of peace and intimacy, a place for contemplation and reflection, and it was here that, he wrote a number of chapters of his memoirs towards the end of the 1950's.
"At the Ritz, Paris is a festive party!". Music and dancing have always gone hand in hand with the festive atmosphere embodied by the Ritz Paris: nocturnal waltzes, afternoon tea parties, and vibrant nights. The expression "Putting on the Ritz", meaning wearing your best clothes, was born with Fred Astaire's 1946 interpretation of the Irving Berlin song.
"So peaceful and resplendant, the Ritz is a restful place for the greats of this world, and echoes the essence of litterature". Such was how poet Léon Paul Fargue described the palace. With Hemingway's type writer, a portable Corona sitting proudly on the bar, Paul Morand meeting with Winston Churchill, and Colette in the company of Jean Cocteau, Marcel Proust would find his inspiration for the flamboyant characters of "A la Recherche du Temps Perdu".
One day in 1880, César Ritz sampled a grandiose, enchanting liquor. Made from cognac and essence of oranges, he named it Grand Marnier, as a tribute to its creator Louis-Alexandre Marnier-Lapostolle. This moment would mark the beginning of a great friendship between the two men, which lasted throughout their lifetime.
Women's beauty radiates because they are cherished and indulged at the Ritz Paris. From the delicately apricot tinted bath linen to the fine golden taps, the entire decor flatters the complexion and is an ode to feminine beauty. Audrey Hepburn, one of the most elegant women of our times, filmed " Love in the Afternoon" here in 1957, and Maria Callas, thoroughly enjoyed coming home to the hushed comfort of Ritz Paris during her performance of Norma at the Paris Opera in June 1964.