A few weeks ago I was invited to the launch party of a new hotel. I love launches. There’s inevitably going to be free champagne (or at least wine), cool people and random fun. A party at a hotel adds a whole new dimension…
Upon reading the invite, I almost too eagerly hit the reply button. Wait a second, where exactly was this new CitizenM? A quick google search told me that it was a Roissy. At the airport? I wasn’t so sure about the location, then browsing around I learnt more about this unique hotel concept. In fact it’s quite a cool, artsy and reasonable option for a necessary overnight at the airport. Though you might not get much sleep if there are cute boys at the bar… read on!
I already had two other previous commitments that night which I didn’t really want to cancel. However, the cards were flipping in favor of the hotel party when first got canceled. Then I found out that Heather of Secrets of Paris and Naughty Paris would be going, surely that meant it would be a good night? I was bound to know other people so it could turn out to be extremely fun. When the second evening engagement was postponed, I scooped up the last room. Yes, a room. Since it was out at the airport, they were offering us a free room, it would also be the best way to really “get to know” the hotel, n’est pas?
On the evening of the event, I packed a little overnight bag and off I went to catch the R.E.R. with Heather. The wording of the invitation made it seem like it was going to be a pajama party for a group bloggers, but rounded the corner, the hotel building was abuzz with music, food stands and hundreds of people. This was no regular sleepover.
I’d never quite been in a hotel like this. We were greeted as “Citizens,” we checked in ourselves and the compact rooms had a variety of contemporary and cool features. Back down in the foyer, the expansive lounge was lined with bookshelves and dotted with art and design installations. Despite the comforts of the lounge, since it was a sunny evening, everyone was out enjoying the terrace, sipping champagne, trying to score some intriguing snacks all to the backdrop of the airport runway, giving jetset a whole new meaning.
Heather and I did think we’d ought to do their official room tour, but like everything else of this unconventional hotel, each room on the “tour” had a different experience theme. My favourites were not surprisingly the “romantic room” and the “party room,” where we grew terribly fond of this fluffy, purple feather boa. From experience (featured in the Chez Francois chapter of my book), I know that boas tend to lead to trouble, and tonight would be no exception. Still, at the time being, I was behaving and the boa stayed in the party room. Back downstairs we ran into Forest of 52 Martinis and the two of us made a pledge to get the bartender to make us some “real” cocktails later, in the meantime, I was more than content with the ever-present champagne. Escaping outside from the too-loud music, we were greeted cheerfully by Mark of Gigs in Paris, draped in the purple feather boa, which he’d “acquired” from the party room… it was around my neck shortly afterwards, I guess it was destiny calling?
The hours ticked on matching the glasses of champagne I’d probably consumed, Forest and I made good on our pledge with several crisp martinis and made-to measure cocktails ordered up by the cocktail diva. We mingled mostly with the other attendees we knew, a line seemed to be invisibly drawn between the writer guests and the business people who’d funded the hotel (and thus the lavish party). Guests were gradually vanishing off to their rooms and soon I was left chatting with a friend of a friend, a French blogger. I don’t think it was merely the cocktail speaking, but he was actually pretty cool. Things were going nicely, that was until a vacuum had started up; the party was shutting down and the bar was officially closed. What about our conversation? Now, I have to squeeze in a little aside. The day before the hotel party, I’d done something brave to lay to rest the attachment to the guy I’d been seeing last year. As mentioned in the Mali to Montmartre post, it was time to move on. I’d even placed an order with the Tessera to meet someone worthwhile soon and my magic card was about to yield some results quick results. Those king-sized beds were definitely meant for two people and the black out curtains a fabulous inclusion. I might have shared mine, but I kept things on the reserved side. I wanted to see Blogger Boy again and didn’t want to screw this up.
We left each other with promises to see each other soon and since he said “he liked me a lot”, I took that as a good sign, the terresa seemed to be working! That said, there were two minor problems: The first was that he was away the following week in Norway so our next date would have to wait. Not a serious delay, the wait could be a good thing, he’d want to see me even more, right? The second problem was a tad more complicated; I couldn’t remember his name… for some hazy reason I thought it was an unusual name and since I needed to call him something in my phone, Dit and I gave him a Norwegian name which we googled over wine the following night. I couldn’t remember if he’d told me what he was doing in Norway, maybe he was from there and going back to see family and friends… maybe?
The answer to the latter came a few days later. He facebook friended me. Ugh. The good news was that I now had his name (French, not Norwegian in the slightest!), the bad was that if I accepted him, he would easily learn more about me, and I didn’t want him to have the wrong idea about me. My blog can be misleading. I guess I could have blocked certain posts, but I didn’t get my act together in time. Like, I’d originally been hesitant to go to the hotel party, I trepidatiously accepted his request, I did want to be his friend, and more, but Facebook friending usually comes after. Though, on the bright side, I could do a little FB stalking. Having a quick look through photos of him, one stopped me in the page-sliding tracks. Hmmm those stairs looked really familiar… I looked over to the description and almost had a heart attack. We’d both attended the same blogger conference two years ago (referred to briefly at the bottom of this funny series of posts about the Catalan). I looked back at the photo aiming at finding him on the church steps of Girona amongst the loitering bloggers at 2am and who do I see right away? ME! Smack dab in the foreground. Very, very peculiar coincidence indeed.
Had the Tessera brought us back together? Had we been destined to connect? Well, this is a Tigresse story, so let’s not get carried away. It always seems too good to be true… but then something goes terribly askew. I did have a proper date with the Blogger Boy, which went well, then he pulled a virtual disappearing act that men are fond of. I know he had a lot of work and was going off on yet another trip, nevertheless, it only takes a few seconds to send a text message, which he apparently couldn’t or most probably didn’t want to find.
Had he found my site and was wary of me? Had he gotten cold feet? Had he remembered he had a girlfriend hiding in the closet? Maybe I will never know, or maybe he’ll text me when he gets back. But as I was reminded by Gail and Forest, I was still a free agent and don’t have to wait for him, yet it’s still a little bothersome. Does “what happens at CitizenM”… actually stay at CitizenM? Can’t a good story be carried on? Or perhaps like any good hotel stay, it usually comes to an end, whether after one night, one week or even longer more luxurious stays.
Either way, I guess it was important for me to try and little efforts like this are helping me move onwards and upwards. I might need to put a better order in with the Tessera, you would think “not pull disappearing acts” would be included in “meet great new guy!” Well, at least I got the purple feather boa… it slithered into my bag and will make its reappearance when dangerously called for again!
Side Note: Tom Wells of Paris Insights was also in attendance, he put together more representative recount of the evening on his blog, accompanied with some nice photos, have a look! He even captured a few good shots of us.