Literary Hotel Le Swann

- The story of Literary Hotel Le Swann - The literary hotel Paris Hotel
11-15 rue de Constantinople, 75008 PARIS +33(0)1 45 22 80 80

A literary hotel and two centuries of history...

A literary hotel and two centuries of history.

You’ll savour the treasures of Marcel Proust all the better as you settle in to a magnificent 19th century hotel built in the period of the Universal Exposition of 1898. Enjoy breakfast under a ravishing Art-Deco stained glass window.

The Swann Hotel was already a famous literary hotel in Proust’s day, and many writers came here.

Famous Hungarian poet Endre Ady stayed here during his Paris years from 1904 to 1911. A commemorative plaque was dedicated to him by the Hungarian Embassy here in the hotel in 2008. Another poet to haunt this place was Guillaume Apollinaire. He lived for a time at number 9 Rue de Constantinople, and he came to the hotel quite often.

Because it is so full of literary history, this is a wonderful place to bring Marcel Proust back to life!

Each of the six floors of the Swann Hotel is dedicated to a legendary place described in the work of Marcel Proust: so we travel from Combray to Balbec, from the Verdurin salon to the elegant Faubourg Saint-Germain, then to Venice to admire the writer’s favourite artists. At each floor, stop a read a passage that recreates the atmosphere of the places Proust evokes in his writing.

The 81 rooms of the Swann each bear the name of a character from La Recherche or a famous artist admired by the writer, from Oriane de Guermantes, to Anna de Noailles, to the Baron de Charlus, to the painter Giotto.

In each, you’ll find a text to introduce the character as well as a passage chosen from La recherche in order to pique the curiosity of the reader.

What’s more, there are many passages that adorn the walls of the hotel, from the windows of the bathrooms – one letter to evoke Baudelaire and another letter to set up a rendez-vous with a young American woman – to the walls of the breakfast room.

It is so easy to fall in love with Proust as you read these passages, whether they are comical or poetic, they are always full of elegance and finesse…


A word from architect Aude Bruguière

The Swann Hotel creates an atmosphere that is at once Parisian, Proustian, and contemporary, so it is evocative of the “Temps Retrouvé”, of dreaming, and of poetic reverie, giving guests the chance to enjoy a respite that is both calm and inspired. A glass partition connects the room and bathroom, reminiscent of an intimate passage from a letter penned by Proust.

To adorn the rooms of the Literry Hotel Le Swann, two contemporary artists were invited to revive the early 20th century Parisian tradition of artistic and cosmopolitan exuberance.

  • A “little poem of Light” a Japanese paper lantern by German designer Jörg Gessner revisits the magic lantern of Combray, suggesting a confusion between what is real and what is a dream.
  • A spectacular photograph, an original work dedicated to the Swann by the Russian artist Alexeï Vassiliev, adorns the headboards, and plays off of the subtle movements of the paper lantern to recreate the ghostly Proustian atmosphere of “Le temps retrouvé”.

Thus, the Swann is like a permeable and quivering film caught between present and past, inviting us to discover or explore through its prism the incredible labyrinth of the Proust’s master work.


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