The Hôtel d' Étrangers (Hotel of Strangers) was a
hotel in the Latin Quarter of Paris on the Boulevard Saint-Michel.
An attic room on the third floor was the meeting place for the Circle Zutique of poets, founded by the poet and inventor Charles Cros.
a circle of friends that included Paul Verlaine and his lover Arthur Rimbaud
would gather to recite poetry, sing, play the piano, drink absinthe and
take hashish and opium.
During the Winter
0f 1871-2, along with others they wrote the collaborative collection
the Album Zutique - a collection of 24 mostly bawdy and obscene parodies.
The seventeen year old Rimbaud lodged here for a while, working as the
assistant to the barman/manager and musician Ernest Cabaner
who taught Rimbaud to play the piano by associating each note of an octave
with a vowel or a colour.