Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris Introduces "I Feel Fine," an Exclusive Photo Exhibition of the Beatles at the George V by Photographer Harry Benson CBE

May 5, 2014,
Paris, France

When the Beatles came to Paris in 1964 to perform a series of concerts at l’Olympia, they chose the George V as their home. A piano was installed in one of their suites to practice and compose. One evening, John Lennon and Paul McCartney were sitting at the piano, and in what seemed like only a few minutes, composed what was to become one of their legendary hits. Photographer Harry Benson, who followed their French tour, was present in the suite and immortalized the moment. Harry recalls George Harrison telling him afterward that they were composing I Feel Fine. Recorded in the studio a few months later, the song quickly reached the top of the music charts.

Another historic moment in the band's career took place at the George V: as they gathered in their suite one night, they learned that their hit I Want to Hold Your Hand was number one in the US and that they were invited to participate in Ed Sullivan’s famous variety show. Harry Benson who had heard they had a pillow fight a few nights earlier thought this could make a great picture. At first, they were not too keen. John Lennon feared this would make them look too childish; however he sneaked up behind Paul McCartney and hit him on the head with a pillow. This turned into 15 minutes of priceless shots that would lead to the legendary photo of their pillow fight seen worldwide. The negatives of the photos were actually developed in the hotel’s bathtub.

50 years later, Four Seasons Hotel George V pays tribute to these legendary Beatles photos by hosting a unique exhibition of Harry Benson’s iconic work in the lobby and in front of Le Bar, mise en scène by the Hotel’s in-house Artistic Director Jeff Leatham.

“It is a great honour to collaborate with Harry Benson, whose talent as a photographer has been acclaimed worldwide for his amazing way to capture iconic moments in an instant. His images are the quintessential legendary photos that you always recognize and never forget,” says Jeff.

"After my stay in Paris, the George V was the yardstick I measured every other hotel by because the hotel handled the tidal wave of Beatlemania with such ease and aplomb. My room was on the same floor as the Beatles, and I know we all got a peaceful night's sleep and after all that's an important part of what you want in a hotel. Yet, it all comes down to the music - the Beatles were arguably the greatest composers of the 20th Century, and that's why I believe these photographs are so important,” explains Harry Benson CBE.

Christian Clerc, Regional Vice President and General Manager of Four Seasons Hotel George V adds, “We are thrilled to feature this truly unique photo exhibition in our lobby. Harry’s photos will bring back great memories to many of us as they are a wonderful testimony of an amazing time in the career of the Beatles, and we are particularly proud that the hotel played a role in these incredible pieces of music history.”

"I Feel Fine,” An Exhibition of Harry Benson’s Beatles Photos at the George V

  • June 15-30, 2014
  • In the Lobby and in front of Le Bar at Four Seasons Hotel George V, 31 avenue George V, 75008 Paris