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The Ritz Paris

Where: Paris

The is arguably the best-known hotel in Paris, thanks to its over-the-top décor and famous guests. Marcel Proust and Coco Chanel both lived here, and Gary Cooper and Audrey Hepburn filmed scenes for Love in the Afternoon at the Ritz. Ernest Hemingway famously declared the hotel bar liberated from the Nazis at the end of WWII, and today the is named in his honor. As Hemingway once wrote, “When I dream of afterlife in heaven, the action always takes place in the Paris Ritz.” The hotel is currently closed for renovations until early 2015.

Insider Tip: The Ritz Paris has made cameo appearances in many novels, including Ian Fleming’s From Russia With Love in the James Bond series; F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Tender is the Night, and Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises.

Plan Your Trip: Visit

15 legendary luxury hotels

As much as we love new, hip boutique hotels, there's something to be said for the grandes dames of the world: Raffles Singapore, The Plaza in New York, or the Ritz Paris. Trips to these cities wouldn't be complete without a visit to one of these renowned hotels. Even if you haven't booked a stay, they need to be seen; at the very least, make sure to order a drink at one of their storied bars. And what exactly makes a hotel legendary? It’s a mix of the hotel’s history, architecture, and famous guests—and a whiff of scandal doesn’t hurt, either. Here’s our look at 15 of the world’s most legendary hotels. By Christina Valhouli