24 Hours at the Hotel La Mirande, Avignon
First of all, YES, La Mirande in Avignon is extremely expensive. And YES for 490,00€ per night in a simple Double Room, you could stay at the Corinthia London or the Plaza in New York. That's a part I do not understand either, but it is not something I relevant - because you are in FRANCE!
On the other side, if you think honestly, you are staying in front of, or better, inside the world famous and spectacular Pope's Palace of Avignon. And that's something you can't get in New York or London or even in Rome. By the way, this is also what I would describe as a Unique Hotel.
First of all, you should know that arriving by car is NOT a good idea. The street becomes extremely narrow and if you are travelling alone it gets even more stressful. Finally when we arrived in front of the Pope's Palace we also recognized the La Mirande, and were already awaited by the bellmen, the front desk staff and the Sales Manager what I found quite welcoming. Check-in was smooth although I found it incorrect not to inform you that breakfast is extra at 28.00€ per person (I will come on this issue later)!
The room, a Grand Deluxe Room, was overlooking the Pope's Palace, and was situated on the second floor in the main building. The beds were quite comfortable as the whole room furnitures. I found the carpet a bit uncomfortable but this is just a small issue. The bathroom was very well maintained with a huge seperated toilet, double basins and a tub with a shower head - something I do not like in fact. BUT the luxurious toiletries by Guerlain came up to it all!
We wanted to make a dinner reservation, but our favourite restaurant was closed on Monday, so we asked the receptionist for an alternative. Unfortunately the choice did not meet our expectations and the standards of the hotel in general. For all those who do not want to leave the hotel for dinner, they have an amazing michelin-starred restaurant in the old cardinals room dating back to the Renaissance century - just in case you do not know on where to spend your money (the menu costs 111 Euros per person)!
After a glamorous sleep in the old guest house of the Popes, we were ready to have breakfast. Unfortunately, the breakfast made not the impression to be ready for us: This was the worst breakfast I HAD to experience during my whole three week summer holidays, where I only stayed at worldclass properties. It is a real shame to charge 28.00 euros for such a lousy buffet like at the La Mirande Avignon. The Baguette was not replaced after I finished it at 9.00 am, when the orange juice was finished it was also not replaced, no eggs were offered nor were we asked if we want to have some egg dishes, and the staff never smiled, although our server was called "Angel" by the other staff members. Always when I remember on this situation I get a bit angry, this was one of the worst ivestments I have ever made!
All in all I fell in love with the design, the atmosphere and the location of the hotel, but definitely NOT with the breakfast! Next time I will look for an excellent French Café where I will pay at least 10€ for a full breakfast.
Our stay at the La Mirande Avignon was sponsored by the hotel, but we had to come up for all extra expenses by ourselfs. Our above written review is our personal opinion and hasn't been influenced.