Fluffy robes, friendly staff, and impeccable decor: Les Jardins du Mess Hotel is located in the heart of Verdun, on the banks of the mighty River Meuse. This four-star hotel is a little bit of luxury in the heart of the city. And, as soon as you wander up the grand steps, into the well-lit entrance hall and through the ornate doors, you’ll be greeted by friendly staff ready to welcome you into this 19th-century building…
Les Jardins du Mess Hotel Location
The hotel is located in the very heart of Verdun, overlooking the River Meuse and the rest of the city. Many rooms even come with their own little wrought-iron balcony on which you can sit, sip your coffee and watch the world go by. From here, you can see many of the city’s iconic landmarks.
These include Verdun Cathedral (the Cathedral of Notre Dame de Verdun’s current building has existed in some form or another for well over one thousand years), and the Châtel Gate (a 13th Century fortified gatepost and all that remains of Verdun’s medieval city walls). You’ll also see all of the typically French bars, brasseries and cute cafés that line the other side of the Meuse.
The hotel itself is situated in a once abandoned building, that has been brought to life thanks to the passion of Meusiens who wanted to attract more visitors to this less explored area of North-East France. After all, the Lorraine region is sandwiched between the wildly popular areas of Alsace and Champagne, meaning that it often misses out on much of the press it deserves in favour of its more famous neighbours. I mean, I’m sure you’ve drunk the bubbling wine from Champagne and The 19th-Century building makes the perfect setting for a classic hotel with a modern twist, and is an excellent starting point for exploring the region.
Les Jardins du Mess Bedrooms & Other Amenities
In total, the hotel has 40 rooms, each of varying size and space. If you’re visiting the hotel by car (and I recommend renting a car to explore the region if you do head to the Lorraine), then the accommodation also offers free parking. Rooms come with a larger than King sized bed, speedy WiFi, a fully stocked minibar (though be warned that this obviously comes with hotel room prices!), as well as a dedicated study space (which is where I started writing this very article).
The ensuite bathroom comes fully stocked with goodies (think bath salts, shower gel, shampoo, moisturiser), a walk in power shower (whose lights change colour as you wash yourself!) and a Spa bathtub that I could easily have stayed in it all evening if I didn’t have to get up early the next day!
Food and Drink at Les Jardins du Mess
During our stay at the hotel, we enjoyed dinner and breakfast (both of these are available for an extra fee during your stay). The two meals were served in the hotel’s very own on-site restaurant, Le Cercle du Mess. Breakfast was served buffet style and it comprised of a Continental spread with all the trimmings you’d expect to find in France: a large cheese selection, cold meats, pastry baskets, as well as a large selection of hot and cold beverages.
Dinner was served over four courses, and the hotel was more than happy to accommodate the fact that I was vegetarian (always a bonus!). Each course came beautifully presented and I was more than happy to see that Mirabelle with sparkling wine was served with dinner. The sweet plum liqueur is definitely one of those must-try local specialties from Lorraine!
Piano Bar at Les Jardins du Mess
Dimly lit with soft live piano music drifting out the door, the Piano Bar is adjacent to the grand entrance hall and is just as welcoming as the rest of the hotel. It’s open to non-residents, as well as guests. Head here to enjoy a whole variety of alcoholic and soft drinks. I’m told that the cocktails served here are simply excellent!.
For those feeling a little braver, there is also a dance floor which is open late into the night. During the day, the piano bar serves a large selection of coffees, teas, and cold drinks, making it the perfect meeting point for friends or a stopping area for you to rest in between learning all about the history of Verdun.
Places of interest near Les Jardins du Mess Hotel
Verdun is situated at the midway point between Metz and Reims, meaning that it’s a great stopping point for those wishing to learn more about the history of the Lorraine region. The historic city is also not far from Luxembourg, Germany, and Belgium.
Aquadrome Verdun Swimming Pool: The impressive architecture of this building is equally as impressive as the size of the pool itself. Head here to swim in a heated and indoor pool in the heart of the city.
Monument de la Victoire: You can’t talk about Verdun and not mention the First World War. After all, one of the most tragic and violent battles of WWI, that of Verdun, was fought in and around the city of Verdun. The monument de la Victoire commemorates and is a memorial to Verdun soldiers.
Dragées Braquier Factory: The sweet factory of Braquier makes the sweet treat that put Verdun on the French foodie cultural map. The Dragée is typically an almond coated in a hard candy shell and it was invented in an apothecary in Verdun at some point in the middle ages. Today, the sweet is often gifted at weddings, christenings, and communions.
Verdun train station: Designed by young designer Gustave Eiffel (you know, that guy who bought the rights to the Eiffel Tower?), the station was built in 1868. Though not much to see in the way of architecture, it’s interesting to see a little bit of history from this famous architect and designer.