Le Grand Hotel was built by the wealthy brothers Isaac & Émile Pereire and designed by Alfred Armand. Construction began in April 1861 and the hotel was inaugurated on April 5, 1862 by Empress Eugenie, wife of Napoleon III, before officially opening on June 30, 1862. The hotel’s construction was part of the complete reconstruction of Paris supervised by Baron Haussmann at the time and it was built in the prescribed style, with a mansard roof. Filling an entire triangular city block, the hotel boasted 800 rooms on four floors for guests, with another whole floor for their servants. The hotel has hosted royalty throughout its long history, including Tsar Nicholas and Tsarina Alexandra, King Edward VII of England and Queen Rania of Jordan. Victor Hugo hosted parties at the Le Grand Hotel and Émile Zola used the hotel for the setting of the death of his tragic character Nana.