November 2014

Recent Archival Acquisition

The Grand Hall in the Hotel Majestic, Paris

​The Hong Kong Heritage Project (HKHP) has acquired a collection of valuable historic postcards, newspaper clippings and a rare special edition 1908 souvenir brochure from The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels (HSH). The collection tells the story of the Majestic Hotel, today’s Peninsula Paris, situated on 19 Avenue Kléber. The hotel was first opened in 1908 and welcomed guests including Marcel Proust, James Joyce and Pablo Picasso. In 1928 George Gershwin wrote one of his best known compositions ‘An American in Paris’ whilst at the hotel, invoking the sights and sounds of the French capital in the 1920s. The Majestic witnessed the cultural, military and political events of the day through its role as a military field hospital during World War One and a venue for peace conferences that gave birth to the League of Nations in 1920. The hotel was later used as an international conference centre under the control of the French Government’s Foreign Ministry, where the Paris Peace Accords were signed which brought the Vietnam War to a close in 1973. The building was built over the course of two years (1906 - 1908) and was painstakingly restored by HSH in four (2010 - 2014).