On my last morning in Paris I had one final piece of business to attend to. A friend had recommended the Chocolate Chaud at Angelina's, and it also happened to be one of Jonathan Routh's 3-star loos of Paris.
Angelina's (Tea Room), 226 Rue de Rivoli
"Hommes is through a mirror-door at the back of the ground floor which also leads to the kitchens. There are two toilets here, one marked Personnel which contains a stoop for the staff, the other marked Hommes which has in it one of the prettiest lavatory bowls in Paris – a Puritas that is patterned in a very delicate wild flower motif. This is a clean simple room which perfectly sets off this rare collector's item.
"Dames too should not be omitted from the toileteer's itinerary. Up the red-carpetted stairs to a pretty room with a good view of the Rue outside. Of especial note: The full length mirrors and polished brass liquid soap dispensers. And in the loos themselves, the elegant wooden containers for loo paper (I suspect them of being the handiwork of Lachasse Fils)."For the most part the loos did not disappoint. The upstairs ladies did indeed have a view, full length mirrors and wooden containers (painted in white and gold.) The gents downstairs, however, though pretty enough had a normal boring toilet and not a floral Puritas. For all I know it is still back there somewhere but my French, alas, is not strong enough to explain to the waitstaff why it is important that I see a particular vintage toilet (which they may or may not know about to begin with.)
Both levels actually have accommodation for both genders. I think the Dames come out slightly ahead as the upstairs gents lack the view and the full-length mirrors (apparently gents don't need to spend as long checking themselves head to toe?)
The hot chocolate and cakes were both delicious. In fact, I have accomplished the unthinkable on this trip... eaten so much cake and pastry that the thought of any more makes me a tad queasy. Thank goodness for being back in England!