On 28 January this year, Legendre Immobilier and Real Estate Development by Euro Disney inaugurated the B&B Hotel, the 5th entity of the Val de France hotel group that brings together the associated hotels of Disneyland® Paris. We met Bernard Durand Rival, in charge of town development and architecture at Euro Disney. He explained to us the sources that inspired the architecture of the Val de France district, and in particular the new hotel.
In order to create the Val de France “style” at the beginning of the years 2000, Bernard and his team dedicated to the tourism program started by aiming for a certain coherence with the style of the large constructions in the region. Indeed, the 4 hotels of Val de France are in line with the large farms of the Brie region, the Commanderies de l’Est of département 77, the small manors or large homes of big landowners. But in the case of this B&B hotel, the inspiration for the 400 economy class rooms came from the abbeys of the region. This new tourism facility reinforces a pole of associated hotels which, in the long term, will represent 2200 rooms.
At the end of a contest, the Euro Disney group, Legendre Immobilier and B&B jointly selected the ARCAS, Maurice Culot architecture firm. Mr. Culot, an architecture historian and a writer at heart, took extra care of the authenticity of his architecture by placing the building in an historic scenario inspired from its geographic location. According to his narrative, the hotel’s origins go back to the XIIth century, when the first monks to clear the land founded a new town – a choice motivated by the presence of a stream that feeds the nearby ponds. They then built the abbey of St. Victor in what today is Magny-le-Hongre. Then, in the XIIIth century, the monks of Saint-Maur founded an institution on the same site. Over the years and through the work of the community, the abbey was enlarged with an abbot’s residence later converted into dormitories and gardens designed in the style of Le Nôtre, before falling to ruins during the French Revolution. In 2013, B&B bought the buildings to turn them into a hotel.
In line with this story, the architecture of the hotel is inspired by abbeys as diverse as Fontevraud, Escaladieu, Valloires, Fontenay, Saint Colomban and even Royaumont. The architects were keen to respect the authenticity of the venues’ evolutions over the centuries to create the B&B style. The public and maintenance areas are all articulated around this theme and while the reception is on the ground floor of the former abbot’s residence, the restaurant is where the refectory used to stand with the spirit and shape of the first wooden frame sanctuaries. The rooms are set up in the former monks’ buildings. The gardens freely refer to the landscape art that existed at the time of the abbey: French-style gardens, orchards, herbal enclosures, aligned fruit trees. In completing this hotel, Maurice Culot also wraps up the vision he started developing years earlier with the adjoining residential lot, “les portes de l’imaginaire” (the imaginary doors) which he designed for real estate developer Kaufmann & Broad.
The B&B hotel was developed along a historic layout that applies to all of Val d’Europe. Bernard Durand Rival and his team chose this development procedure to guarantee the coherence and quality of all Val d’Europe. The example of the B&B hotel perfectly extends the residential district of Magny-le Hongre, while offering the hotel guests a pleasant and unique life frame.
Bernard Durand Rival, in charge of town planning and architecture at Euro Disney declares, “The size, the aesthetics and the wish to be authentic are the big difference for this B&B hotel that underlines its ambition to be unique in this range of hotels. If the success is confirmed, we have already looked into the possibility with the partners to extend the hotel, since it is built on a piece of land that is larger than necessary”.