p. 04 p. 09 p. 10

They were painting the grass when we arrived at Euro Disney. So it was all true: the Americans were determined to conquer European culture, even to the extent of changing the colour of our vegetation (admittedly, the spray applied dye was simply being used to unify a patch of newly laid sods but it did give that slightly bluish tint to the grass that you see in California and never here). The site is a third as big as Manhattan, or a fifth the size of Paris (take your pick). It is the largest construction project in Europe after the Channel Tunnel. Work on it will continue to 2017.

You realise that you have come to somewhere completely un-European when you see the huge colonnaded facade of Robert Stern's 1000 plus room hotel which is intended to evoke an 1890s Stick Style New England seaside resort. Then you pass the awesome length of Antoine Grumbach's Sequoia Lodge, an almost equally large edifice styled to look like a Rocky Mountains resort hotel. A glimpse of Michael Graves' hotel follows. It is themed on New York, and rather cleverly captures some of the verticality of the city in a fundamentally very long horizontal building with the aid of references to Rossi, Stirling, Gehry and of course to himself. However daunting from the outside, the rooms of all these hotels are made to such a comfortable American standard that it makes you blink when payment is found to be in francs, not dollars.

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