Few and far between, notoriously cramped and occasionally — to the horror of some — sans actual toilet seat (and sometimes toilet bowl), for many years public restrooms were a neglected feature of Paris life.
That was until social media turned the bathroom break into a selfie opportunity and photogenic facilities became essential for any self-respecting business. Now with five-star toilets popping up in restaurants, bars and shopping malls, can you say you’ve even been to Paris if you haven’t Instagrammed at least one posh Parisian pit stop? (Admit it, you’ve taken a bathroom mirror selfie.) Here are nine of the chicest and quirkiest to make your next restroom visit a distinctly Instagrammable one.
Since opening in 2017, The Hoxton Paris hasn’t just become a popular hangout, it has also become a minor Instagram sensation. Put it down to its Soho House-designed common area with cozy armchairs, its sleek restaurant, Rivié, and quite possibly its perfectly designed restrooms. Boasting subway tile, a checkerboard floor design, antiqued mirrors, vintage sinks and soft sage color palette, its retro aesthetic and large size have made it the essential spot for an #OOTD shot. — The Hoxton 30-32 Rue du Sentier, 75002
Probably not how the Rolling Stones envisioned their logo could be reworked, but fun nonetheless. For men, this restroom features urinals modeled after the Stone’s signature graphic. Why the Stones connection? Belushi’s started in London’s Covent Garden and today with locations across the UK and Europe, continues to feature decorative nods to British music icons. — Belushi’s Bar 159 Rue de Crimée, 75019
More modern Victoriana dressing room than public toilet, les WC at Hotel des Grands Boulevards feature a beautiful large fountain-like sink, romantic arches and stunning decorative wallpaper that just begs to be photographed. Home to a French-Italian restaurant and not one, but two bars from the renowned Experimental Bar group, there’s plenty of reasons to linger at this gorgeous property. — Hotel des Grands Boulevards, 17 Boulevard Poissonière, 75002
When the Big Mamma restaurant group opened the latest of its hit restaurants at Station F, a business campus for start-ups, it knew it needed restrooms as impactful as the massive space featuring five kitchens, three bars and seats for 1,000. Enlisting Paris-based conceptual bathroom design company, Trone (throne), it came up with a series of high-style bespoke restrooms featuring modern-minimalist toilets, sleek marble, pink mosaic tile and club-ready lights. Party in the bathroom! — La Felicità, 5 Parvis Alan Turing, 75013
With a glamorous, lush and verdant design befitting the Montmartre hotel bar it sits in, this tropical toilet conjures equal parts 19th-century gentleman’s club and Belle Époque boudoir. Think velvet upholstery, gold accents, rich wallpaper, oversized mirrors and the ideal spot to refresh your makeup and snatch some gossip between cocktails. — Le Très Particulier, 23 Avenue Junot, 75018
Visit the restrooms at the Palais de Tokyo and prepare to be greeted with a pop of color worthy of the museum’s avant-garde surroundings. Designed by Stephan Bidoux as part of the renovation of the museum’s Japanese restaurant, resist an artistic red lippy shot with this red tiled beauty as a backdrop at your peril. — Palais de Tokyo, 13 Avenue du Président Wilson, 75116
While this art nouveau gem next to La Madeleine is currently closed, rumors have been swirling around the imminent reopening of these historic toilets for several years. Complete with period tile work and stained glass, all set discretely underground at the foot of curved staircase, this decorative spot would be a welcome if not chic alternative to the cabin toilets otherwise dotted around the arrondissement. — Place de la Madeleine, 75008 Paris
Since opening this year, Galeries Lafayette’s hot new concept store on the Champs-Élysées has been attracting legions of young shoppers with its experiential take on retail. Jam-packed with Instagram-friendly corners such as its plush pink fitting rooms and bright bistro, Café Citron from Jacquemus, its goal has been to create an inclusive and welcoming space in step with its millennial and Gen Z clientele. To wit, a luxe array of gender neutral restrooms featuring the very latest in hi-tech Japanese toilets with water sprays. — Galeries Lafayette, 60 Avenue des Champs-Élysées, 75008
Blending soft pinks, natural stone and stunning textured feature walls, understated yet glamorous sensuality rule at this north Marais hotel designed by Raphael Navot. Opened in 2017, its bar, L’Herbarium with perfume-inspired cocktail list, casual Italian eatery, La Cicchetteria National and its Ristorante National restaurant have become neighborhood favorites. Just don’t forget to indulge in an elegant bathroom visit for a fully pampered experience. — Hotel National des Arts et Métiers, 243 Rue Saint Martin, 75003