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Le Régina Biarritz Hôtel & Spa - MGallery by Sofitel

History: 
    Le Régina Biarritz Hôtel & Spa - MGallery by Sofitel
 in BiarritzHistory: 
    Le Régina Biarritz Hôtel & Spa - MGallery by Sofitel
 in Biarritz

History

In the early 1900s, Fernand Journeau emerged as one of France’s preeminent hoteliers. His Parisian hotel, the Hôtel Regina, had won him great praise. To capitalize upon his acclaim, he decided to develop another hotel in the rustic, seaside municipality of Biarritz. Renowned landscape architect Henri Martinet oversaw the project, choosing a pentagonal shape for his design. Martinet built two beautiful domes atop the structure, adding an inner courtyard with an enclosed glass roof inside. All the rooms gazed into this marvelous central patio, which housed the restaurant and its winter garden. When Martinet was finally finished, the hotel stood as a stunning example of Second-Empire architectural style.

Christening it as Le Régina Biarritz, Journeau eagerly debuted his new establishment in the summer of 1907. Golf courses nearby attracted wealthy tourists, which enabled Journeau to cultivate a foundation for consistent business. As such, the popularity of Le Régina Biarritz soared, with the building forming a prestigious reputation for opulence and luxury. The New Year’s Eve Celebration of 1908 epitomized the hotel’s newfound majesty, as 125 distinguished guests from across Europe partook in the revelry. Among their number were many high-ranking European aristocrats and dignitaries. The allure of Le Régina Biarritz even attracted King Edward VII, who periodically stayed at the hotel toward the end of his life. By the 1920s, the building emerged as one of the foremost resorts on the entire continent, employing a permanent staff of 50 people.

Marcel Curveur eventually took over from Ferdinand Journeau at the height of Le Régina Biarritz’s early success. But the prosperity was not to last. Shortly after Curveur’s appointment, Le Régina Biarritz fell on hard times due to forces beyond his control. The Wall Street Crash of 1929 caused great financial hardship for the hotel, as many of its affluent benefactors lost their personal fortunes. Shortly thereafter, the Spanish Civil War erupted directly to the south. Visitation collapsed further, forcing Curveur to reduce Le Régina Biarritz’s staff to only nine people. The luck of the hotel grew worse. When Germany invaded France during World War II, the German Army requisitioned the building and transformed it into a barracks. Le Régina Biarritz suffered terribly. Once Allied troops liberated the hotel in 1944, it had endured an estimated three million francs in damages.

Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, good times would return to Le Régina Biarritz. After the war, Biarritz became a dynamic university town occupied once more by large numbers of foreign tourists. New ownership at the hotel seized upon the opportunity. They put the building through a significant period of renovation, which returned it to its former glory. By the end of the 1950s, Le Régina Biarritz was once again a popular vacation destination for prominent individuals traveling abroad. Countless celebrities and politicians of international fame continued to reside at the hotel, including King Hassan II of Morocco.

The Royal Monceau Company purchased Le Régina Biarritz in the late 1980s. It operated the hotel for the next decade until AccorHotels acquired it in 1998. Since then, Le Régina Biarritz has maintained its legendary flair and unmatched hospitality. The hotel is now part of Accor’s luxurious MGallery family of boutique hotels, reimagined to appear as it did in the Roaring Twenties.

Le Régina Biarritz Hôtel & Spa - MGallery by Sofitel, a member of Historic Hotels Worldwide since 2018, dates back to 1907.


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International Numbers

Austria 08000706176
Belgium 080081830
France 805542721
Germany 8007241217
Ireland 1800995320
Italy 800979444
Netherlands 08000200956
Norway 80054304
Spain 900814719
Switzerland 0800001798
UK 8009179622
Book by Phone: +1 866 670 3764
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