Once home to prolific Italian painter Amedeo Modigliani’s studio, this boutique Parisian hotel by French architecture and interior atelier Lizée Hugot is steeped in history.
Set in the heart of Montparnasse in Paris’ Left Bank, this 20-room hotel is the latest boutique offering by hospitality group Adresses Hôtels. The 18th-century building is tucked away off a busy thoroughfare on Rue de la Grande Chaumière, adjacent to the eminent art school Académie de la Grande Chaumière. Notable patrons of the 150-year-old hotel include Japanese-French painter Tsuguharu Foujita, impressionist artist Paul Gauguin and Amedeo Modigliani – whose studio was located on the top floor of the hotel. With this profound past, Adresses Hôtels engaged Stéphanie Lizée of Lizée Hugot to reinvent the six-storey building as an ode to the arts.
Together with a team of dedicated furniture makers and five commissioned artists, Lizée Hugot have fostered a unique hospitality experience where guests can immerse themselves in Paris’ deep-rooted creative culture.
The lobby looks more like a private office or study than a reception, with built-in storage cabinets, open shelving and a solid oak desk. A frescoed ceiling by Parisian art director and illustrator Franck Lebraly is faintly reminiscent of Picasso’s ‘Luncheon on the Grass’.
The honesty bar welcomes guests, art students and neighbouring artists to graze on French pastries, drinks and seasonal fruit at any time of the day. Continental breakfast is served here between the lounge and the workshop on custom-designed wooden tables.
The deluxe suite features complementing stained oak furniture and open shelves displaying an eccentric array of sculptures, surrounded by hand-plastered, cream-coloured walls.
The bed in the classic suite is partly enclosed in an oak alcove, illuminated by custom-designed wall sconces.
Entering from a quiet side street, you’re greeted with a large-scale earthenware mural by young Parisian ceramicist Maximilien Pellet. This oversized mosaic cleverly divides the hotel into two distinct zones; the reception and spiral staircase leading to the rooms on the right and communal spaces on the left. It’s here in the lounge where guests are encouraged to pour themselves a drink from the honesty bar, indulge in a traditional French pastry by patissier Kevin Lacote and read a book from the library on the striped daybed.
Beyond this convivial meeting place lies a dedicated artist studio anchored by a rustic 10-metre trestle table. Introductory and advanced courses in the applied arts are organised with the Académie de la Grande Chaumière in drawing, sketching, sculpture, and photography, available for both guests and the public. This space reflects a true artist’s workroom; walls are adorned with eclectic works of all colours and sizes by emerging and established Parisian artists, with many of the rotating pieces available for purchase.
Almost every interior element in Hôtel des Académies et des Arts was custom-designed by Lizeé Hugot and realised by artisans, from the hand-carved mirrors to the table lamps.
The ensuites offer a brief pause from the art, referencing a quintessential 1920s Parisian bathroom with glazed terracotta tiles and an ornate rail shower.
The narrow spiral staircase features sketches in thin black frames.
The lounge and library encourage guests to pause and flick through a book on the striped daybed.
Lizée Hugot commissioned art director and illustrator Franck Lebraly to recreate one of the most telling symbols of Renaissance architecture – frescoed ceilings. Franck emulated Pablo Picasso’s surrealist painting style and pastel colour palette in the ceilings of 10 rooms, each slightly different to the last according to the room’s light and scale. These frescoed ceilings form a key design element in each room, accompanied solely by the essentials; a knotty oak bed, two bedside tables, a desk and numerous works on paper – a setup similar to that depicted in Van Gogh’s renowned ‘Painter’s Room’.
Almost every interior element in Hôtel des Académies et des Arts has been custom-designed by Lizeé Hugot and realised by craftsmen, from the hand-carved mirrors to the silver table lamps. Each ensuite references the quintessential 1920s Parisian bathroom, with cream and black glazed terracotta tiles and an ornate rail shower.
In arguably the art capital of the world, Hôtel des Académies et des Arts offers an imaginative reprieve from the bustle of Paris. Lizée Hugot have channelled the quirks and ‘perfectly imperfect’ aesthetic found in an artist’s home through each and every space in the hotel, where you’re never too far from a sculpture, rough sketch or portrait painting.
True to the hotel’s history and location, the space is a patron of the arts with many of the displayed pieces available for purchase.