French luxury hotel group Maisons Pariente is the vision of Patrick Pariente, the founder of French brand Naf Naf, and his two daughters, Leslie Kouhana Pariente and Kimberly Pariente.
The eldest daughter, Leslie Kouhana Pariente, oversees and fine tunes three, soon to be four luxury hotels: Crillon le Brave in Provence, Lou Pinet in Saint Tropez, Le Coucou in Méribel and Le Grand Mazarin which will open in the heart of the Marais, Paris, September 2022. Designed as elegant private houses located in rare places, with a unique and arty personality, all stand out on their own as places where creativity, service and family values stand out.
The Pariente family entered into the luxury hotel business nine years ago with the development of luxury alpine hideaway L’Apogée Courchevel, in partnership with Oetker Collection. This was followed by the 2018 acquisition of Hotel Crillon Le Brave, a renowned Relais & Châteaux property at the foot of Mont-Ventoux in Provence, which is currently undergoing a full renovation before reopening on May 1 with a new gourmet dining destination.
Next up will be Hotel Lou Pinet, which will open its doors in mid-May in Saint-Tropez after transitioning from a four-star to a five-star property. Other projects are in the pipeline in Méribel (December 2019) and the Marais district of Paris (2021).
We sat down with Leslie, former asset manager turned-luxury hotelier, to hear more.
How is it being a woman in the hospitality industry?
It's a chance for me, as a woman, to evolve in a world that I'm passionate about. I’ve learnt a great deal along the way about the hotel industry which I don’t initially come from. As a woman, I rely every day on the technical skills I have acquired with experience, but most importantly, I cultivate, manage and take decisions based on my sensitivity: in the end, it’s all about feeling, sensing, following one’s intuition, doing things with love, passion and kindness.
That’s how we nurture our vision, as a family, to build a collection of simple and warm luxury hotels. All hotels set in exceptional places and each one conveys our family values with a sincere and generous approach to service, excellence.
How have things changed in the last decade?
The hotel industry used to be very standardised. Today, as the world changes constantly, the industry has had to evolve: globalisation, which tends to make everything look the same, has led to greater creativity in many areas, a desire to be and act differently, put new initiatives forward.
Of course, Maisons Pariente has to focus on exceptional locations, attentive and generous service, but above all, we want to touch our guests, trigger sincere emotions, write a story together that will generate unique memories. That is why and how we make every detail our own, invite talented interior designers to craft unique interiors. Every place is different, as is every client.
At Le Coucou Méribel and Crillon Le Brave, you treat hospitality like an ecosystem, taking nature, timeless designs, old stones and fundamental values into account. Could you talk about this vision?
Every hotel takes its direct surrounding into account: Le Coucou Méribel is surrounded by pine trees and mountains over which all rooms have breath-taking views. Hotel Crillon le Brave is nested in the small historical village of Crillon-Le-Brave, facing the Mont Ventoux with a view over impressive vineyards. Hotel Lou Pinet is immersed in vegetation with 2 huge pine trees dominating the property. In my opinion, the beauty of nature calls for humility and, faced with it, we each have a responsibility to respect it. We are committed daily to protecting these natural environments: we kept the old white stones at Crillon le Brave to preserve the historical heritage of the village; in Méribel, Le Coucou was designed as a mountain chalet influenced by famous designer Charlotte Perriand; at Lou Pinet, the hotel is a Tropezian hideaway where nature rules, with plants climbing along the coloured facades of the different buildings of the hotel.
What role will sustainability play in the future of hospitality?
Nowadays you can't talk about the hotel industry without talking about eco-responsibility. Since Maisons Pariente was funded in 2019, we have set up various actions to respect the environment, treat waste, support local trade, embrace charities. Social commitment is one of the fundamental principles of Maisons Pariente, it is in our DNA.
Things have changed: today, one chooses a brand for the culture it conveys and in years to come, this will become even stronger and more eloquent. Our guests need to recognise and identify with the values of our hotels, be reassured by the quality of the produce served in our restaurants, understand that our commitment is real, on a daily basis. In the current health crisis, it is especially essential to reassure guests, share and stand up to our commitments towards sustainability.
How important is knowing the people, the destination, the local products, the natural environment in setting up a respectful hospitality-concept/business?
All our hotels are local. We have chosen all locations for their exceptional natural environment, uniqueness, beauty, culture ... Together with our hoteliers, we value local knowledge and heritage: we support this through our gastronomy offering for example. At Crillon le Brave, Executive Chef Adrien Brunet works with many local producers to highlight seasonal, locally sourced produce year-round. On the plate, that is priceless.
You’re working on a new Parisian hotel. What is your intention behind this new concept? What kind of luxury do you want to put forward?
For Le Grand Mazarin, we wanted a place that would be both for Parisians and in international clientele willing to live Paris the 'Parisian way’. Le Grand Mazarin’s exceptional location in the heart of the Marais is arty, cosmopolitan and ultra-trendy. The hotel will stand out like an artist who is a bit crazy, audacious and insolent!
This article was featured in:
The Explorer Issue