Lourdes became a city famous because of the apparition of the Virgin Mary to St. Bernadette in 1858. Due to that event the city began to change to be able to accommodate the pilgrims who came to visit her. Massabielle Grotto (where the apparition of the Virgin took place) was cleaned, the esplanade opened, widened streets, sewers of the city was modernized and churches, hotels and hostels were built.
The Grand Hotel Moderne, four stars, was built by order of Jean Soubirous (cousin of St. Bernadette Soubirous) and his wife Benoite Toulet in 1896. For its construction the most famous architect of the time, was chosen Jean-Marie Lacrampe, also responsible other emblematic works Lourdes as the town hall, the ramps leading to the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception and Soum Castillo. Lacrampe was known as the “city architect” because he had also built the school of St. Joseph Honoré Auzon school and a private villa in the town. Later, at the insistence of the city council and supervised by the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris, Lacrampe opened his own school of design and stonework.
The hotel owes its nickname “Le Moderne” the fact that at the time of its opening to the public this was the only establishment of its kind in the region that had elevator on each floor, bathrooms with hot water, private for phone in each room and individual cabins. From the first moment the hotel had as guests dignitaries and aristocrats seeking an elegant and comfortable place to stay during their visits to Lourdes.
In 2007 the building was purchased by the Tadesco family, who wanted to renew it and give it a second youth. Today they are still the owners of the hotel. The rehabilitation work, which cost between 1.5 and 2.7 million euros, included the cleaning of the baroque facade, modernization of all rooms and the restoration of the woodwork of the main staircase of the hotel and dining, made originally by the Art Nouveau designer Louis Majorelle.
The Grand Hotel Moderne is situated at 21 Avenue Bernadette Soubirous, Mihas, in Lourdes, France. The hotel is so close to the Shrine of Lourdes since many of its balconies overlook it. Especially nice is the view of the illuminated shrine night and processions that take place there with the faithful carrying candles. Given its central location in the city, from the hotel you can walk easily to different points of interest, such as the Musée du Gemmail and the Musée de Cire of Lourdes (350 meters) or the Pic du Jer (1 6 km) and others. A ten minute drive (15 km) airport is Tarbes Ossun Lourdes.
Since the project promoters were relatives of Sainte Bernadette, from the beginning they wanted to be “the most beautiful city” hotel. He was commissioned to do the work the most important architect of the time, Jean-Marie Lacrampe.
The Grand Hotel Moderne style is similar to the castles built during the reign of Louis XVI. Its classic French Baroque architecture presented in this case and well crafted curved walls. The carved stone balconies are stylish shapes and bright colors. Emphasize the stonework with floral and fauna, of angels and lions grounds in front of the hotel. The panel containing the inscription “HM” continues to serve today as presentation of accommodation Moderne Hotel.
The most spectacular features of the building are the circular wooden staircase to the lobby and dining room ceilings. The hotel also has many objects of the nineteenth century as porcelain, silverware, lithographs and various furniture. The hotel also offers facilities for business meetings, and offers a number of excursions prepared which guests can hire.
- 110 rooms: single, double, double, triple, quadruple, family, connecting rooms, rooms for the disabled, five suites.
- 1 restaurant: Le Majorelle
- 2 dining
- 1 bar
- 1 large living room
- Private rooms for meetings: maximum capacity of 200 people.
The interiors of the hotel are also characterized by its baroque style has been preserved in its restoration wanted to make it look as good today as it did once. The interior of the building transports guests to the atmosphere of the “Belle Epoque”, the golden age of the late nineteenth century until the First World War. The nineteenth-century style can be seen in the beautiful wood paneling, delicate ornamentation of the ceilings and colorful mosaics that make up the floor of the different rooms of the building.
The decor and interiors of the hotel were given by Louis Majorelle (1859 -1926), one of the most important designers and artists of French Art Nouveau style. This artist was the son of a furniture maker and was trained as a painter at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris in 1887 from the hand of Jean-François Millet.
Majorelle used especially grainy and exotic woods like mahogany. A great example of this is found in the splendid main staircase of the Grand Hotel Moderne. This can be considered a masterpiece of the nineteenth century with outstanding wood patterns that cross the spiral staircase.
To get lots of natural light into the rooms the building was designed with high ceilings and windows. The rooms feature Louis XVI style furniture and Italian marble bathrooms. Almost all rooms have balconies.
The restaurant owes its name precisely to the interior designer Louis Majorelle. I baptized him and to honor the artist for the great work he did in this project. The restaurant has a warm and intimate atmosphere thanks to the materials used in its interior. Note the rich wood paneling, intricate designs the wood floor and details inspired by nature: plant stems, branches and lilies. The lounge also owes its splendor to the great marble columns containing that provide a point of contrast between robustness and delicacy of the other details of the decor. Among the elegant furniture old wooden chairs handmade, gilded tables and rich fabrics are Louis XVI style. The restaurant serves French and Italian cuisine in a refined atmosphere.