September 14, 2022
Cojean – Balanced and lovingly prepared food
Not every hotel has a story to tell but this eco-friendly 25hours Hotel Terminus Nord definitely has! This Parisian hotel has a very special charm of its own with an A-lister material cocktail bar and a casual vibe where you can come as you are.
25hours Hotel Terminus Nord is in a listed building in the 10th Arrondissement, opposite the Gare du Nord train station. With a direct connection to Eurostar, Thalys, TGV and RER trains, it is the perfect place to stay within walking distance of the Eiffel Tower, 5.4km away, Louvre 3.1km with Montmartre and the Sacre-Coeur just 1.7km away. Perfect for cycling to the sights of Paris! With a journey time of around 2 hrs from London why not jump on the Eurostar from London and in a short time you can be in your hotel.
No need to for an overnight stay in order to have access to the facilities of this wonderful hotel as everybody is welcome to explore the quirkiness that defines it. Inspired by a mix of African and Asian cultures the stylists of the hotel have created a vibrant and lively theme unique to the venue.
The walls are decorated with sassy street art reflecting the artists, historians and storytellers of the area. The reception area is designed to look like a French kiosk with added quirkiness. A staircase leads to a small lounge area, as well as the Neni restaurant and the Sape Bar on the first floor. The hotel offers rooms of different categories, size and design, all beautifully decorated with nods to African and Asian art.
The standard rooms M start with a size of approx 18 -20 sqm, followed by room L with approx 25 – 28 sqm. Each room clothes racks inspired by classic hotel trolleys. Overseeing the Gare du Nord, my room had a birds eye view of the street for people watching as the sun went down.
With a ‘come as you are’ instruction I headed off to the bar. What better location to socialise and meet people. The resident DJ mixes Soul and Motown on a Thursday night, making up for a lively evening. An ideal place for a quick drink after work or a day of shopping as it is the perfect laid back environment to relax in with it’s laid back gentleman’s club vibes. Stepping into the Sape Bar, with its bronze-coloured mosaic glass counter, a feeling of relaxation comes over you. The extensive cocktail menu makes it difficult to decide on which drink to pick first. I recommend the ‘Gin Basil Mash’ with gin, basil and lemon, a refreshing and perfectly balanced cocktail.
Next to the Sape Bar is the hotel restaurant Neni, serving eastern Mediterranean cuisine, where guests are welcome to share food surrounded by powdery tones and floral patterns which provides for a great dining experience.
Neni describes its food as ‘cosmopolitan soul food’. Guests are encouraged to sit together, becoming an integral part of the Neni family. Neni comes from the initials of Chef Haya Molcho’s four sons, Nuriel, Elior, Nadiv and Ilan and takes its culinary inspiration from Persia, Arabia, France and Germany. Haya says her food is cooked for the world not for individual nations, with the restaurant decor designed to celebrate women from across a range of cultures – this is women power I like to see!
The tasting menu provides many delicious different flavours, made with love, generosity and happiness. We were served small sharing plates, an ideal way to sample many colourful dishes of different styles. Needless to say, we were won over.
The meal started with traditional mezze – falafels accompanied by three different types of hummus, one of which mango hummus, which I bet you won’t find anywhere else! The beetroot, classic hummus and babaganoush were just as delicious! Warm fluffy pitta bread served alongside with garlic sauce was the perfect accompaniment to the trio of dips. I had to stop myself eating it to save room for dessert!
A generous dessert selection was brought to our table by a lovely waitress. The ’Sesam’ – a Neni Classic – proved to be my favourite. Toasted White Sesame, Homemade Muscovado ice cream, Har Bracha Halva, raw tahini, date syrup and caramelized pecans I couldn’t get enough of! However there are so many more. Another favorite was the Old City of Jerusalem speciality – Knafeh filled with mozzarella and ricotta served with chopped pistachios and homemade yogurt ice cream, orange blossom syrup, original and so delicious!
The service is professional yet personable plus you get a view of Gare du Nord while eating. Neni has come up with a new concept for brunch which will be served on Sundays. I imagine it will be very colourful, a wonderful spread of food to have some quality time along with some amazing food.
Time to sleep and as I jumped into a beautiful and comfortable bed, after the excellent food and meeting wonderful people I slept through till dawn. With the room and bed being so comfortable and an eye mask provided it was guaranteed I’d have a perfect night’s sleep. On wakening, I strolled onto the little balcony to watch the sun come up and when ready went down to see what would be on offer for breakfast.
Breakfast is also served in the Neni restaurant and provides an excellent range of fresh produce to choose from a light to a more substantial breakfast. There are croissants or pain au chocolat, yoghurts with different toppings, eggs, smoked salmon and french toast, and with all the different breads you are spoilt for choice!
Now it became clear why we need another hour for 25 hours Hotel Terminus Nord. What a wonderful stay with beautiful hospitality, fantastic rooms, amazing food and cocktails and together with its history it makes 25hours Terminus Nord hotel so special you won’t want to leave. I will definitely be coming back!
W: Cojean UK
Written by India Morse for Luxuria Lifestyle London and International