Eugenia de Montijo was born on the 5th of May in Granada, Spain as a earthquake shook the city. This marks the beginning of a woman who lived a very remarkable life. 27 years later she was going to become the last empress of France. Her mother was very eager for her daughter to find an honorable man to marry. Little did she know that this man would be the Prince of France (Napoleon the 3rd). When Louis Napoleon first saw Eugenia, he was dazzled and their love for each other was declared in the beautiful cathedral, Notre Dame in Paris on the 30th of January 1853. At the time it was very unusual for royals to marry someone who wasn't of royal standards. This did not stop them even though it was highly controversial. Together they had a son called Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte.
During her lifetime, she used her position as empress to shine light on various injustices in society such as the inequality between men and women. She stood up and gave a voice for women when women needed it the most. This is just one of the reasons we can proudly call ourself Hotel Eugenia De Montijo!
She quickly won the people's hearts as the new empress of France and faithfully performed the duties of an empress. With this, came a lot of traveling and public appearances which meant constant outfit changes. She expressed her life in spectacular gowns and dresses of haute couture designed by the biggest fashion names at the time. Luckily the fashion industry in Paris was booming during the mid 1800-centery. The empress also worked with Monsieur Louis Vuitton, who at the time had just started to make a name out of himself. She asked him not only to design a bag for her but to also begin "packing the most beautiful clothes in an exquisite way" which were her very own words.
Eugenia de Montijo's life was not only filled with glamour but also turmoil; the empress was met with a lot of hardships throughout her life. Her beloved husband and only son unfortunately died. Her husband died after surgery at 65 years old, leaving her a widow for the next part of her life. She lost her son at the age of 22 to the hands of the Zulus in South Africa where he was serving with the British army. The life of Eugenia is one that many would call "old-style romanticism", it has also inspired screen players, books and even astronomers! Out of curiosity, the Asteroid 45 that was discovered in 1857 was named in her honor. As you can see, she was a woman that left her mark on her era, and we invite you to be a part of it.