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La Samaritaine gets ready to reopen

June 01 2021

Luxury holding LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton announced the opening of La Samaritaine in June, probably coinciding with Paris fashion week, which will be held from June 22 to 27.
The Parisian department store should have been inaugurated on April 2020 for its 150 anniversary, after years of refurbishment for a €750 million investment, but the opening was delayed due to several Coronavirus lockdown measures in France.

Founded in 1870 and considered an icon of Paris, La Samaritaine is ideally situated between the Louvre and Notre Dame and is the site of an interplay of art nouveau and art deco elements.
The new Samaritaine places diversity of every kind at the heart of its raison d’être: diversity of function, architectural forms, construction methods, as well as social and intergenerational diversity. The site closed for safety reasons in 2005 and the architectural design was entrusted to the Japanese firm Sanaa (2010 Pritzker Prize) which returns to the original inspiration of the La Samaritaine's original architects Frantz Jourdain and Henri Sauvage bending the historical elements with contemporary touches. The scheme revealed a renovation project of the early 20th century buildings that are spread over two blocks between the Quai du Louvre and the Rue de Rivoli.

Therefore the new Samaritaine project adheres to an innovative environmental approach and includes a department store, 5-star Cheval Blanc hotel with 72 rooms, 96 social housing units, offices, and a crèche.

The renewal of the Samaritaine building takes place during a rich period of an urban renovation program in the center of Paris, including the redevelopment of the former wholesale food market Les Halles and the Pinault’s Bourse de Commerce contemporary art museum, which opened last month.

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Image © Pierre-Olivier Deschamps