Paris - Around the Opera - Garnier.

MAY 17,2017 - MAY 17,2017 (1 DAYS)

France

- DAYS

Citywalk

Paris - Madeleine, Palais Garnier - Opera, Grand Magasins:

Main Attractions: Place de la Madeleine, l’Egise Saint-Marie Madeleine, Galerie De La Madeleine, Paris Olympia, Hotel Scribe and Restaurante Lumière, Musée du Parfum, Garnier Opera House, Théâtre de l'Athénée, Place Édouard VII, Place Diaghilev, Galeries Lafayette, Printemps.

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Start: Place de la Madeleine Metro station. You have the metro on lines 8, 12 or 14 and disembarking at the Madeleine stop, or buses numbers 24, 42, 52, 84 and 94 will also get you here. Place de la Madeleine (metro station at the Boulevard de la Madeleine, situated on the right hand side as you look at the Madeleine church). End: Havre - Caumartin Metro station (lines 3 and 9). Duration: 1/2 day. Distance: 5 km. Weather: any weather.

Introduction: The neighborhood around Opéra and Bourse is a elle époque paradise of grand boulevards, refined arcades, and mass-market art-nouveau entertainment. Here, modern day workers continue to take advantage of the legacy that nobility and finance left in the 19th century. Brightly-lit brasseries, theaters, and cinemas sit side by side with French bistros predominating in one area and Japanese restaurants in another. The area is most famous for the Palais Garnier opera house and glamorous department stores.

Our 1/2 day itinerary:  Place de la Madeleine is located at the end of the Rue Royale and is named after the impressive structure called La Madeleine, which was eventually consecrated as a church almost one hundred years after this square in Paris was first established. We shall explore, first, the culinary gems of this district - before entering the mighty church of La Madeleine.

Place de la Madeleine is a Parisian district of luxury and prestige. One of the top places in Paris for shopping. Stylish restaurants and top-notch shops are gathered here, competing to show off the most beautiful window. In fact, the square now seems devoted to food. The square excels in its abundance of gourmet food stores. Famous specialized food brands such as Fauchon and Hédiard have shops here. The Madeleine Square neighborhood has always been capable of attracting well-to-do shoppers and visitors.

Patrick Roger, #3 place de la Madeleine, Chocolatiers & Shops - Beautiful, expensive and eclectic boutique chocolate shop with intriguing decoration:

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The tiny Maille boutique, easily overlooked in the corner nook (# 6 Place de la Madeleine), stocks mustard. Only in Paris could you have an entire shop devoted to mustard. Maille, one of the oldest mustard brands in France, has its origins in Marseille when distiller Antoine Maille set up his first mustard tap in 1723. You can find here more than 60 different types of mustard flavored with everything from violets to champagne -  including exotic flavors such as raspberry basil, Thai spices, Cassis, chestnut, cherry and almond, celery and truffle:

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Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Next door two prestigious caviar houses rival for attention—Caviar Kaspia (no. 17). In #17 resides the shop that stocks one of the most prized foods in the world, caviar at Kaspia. Stocking the finest caviars since 1927, the shop has Beluga, Ossestra, and Baeri imported from Italy and Bulgaria. Smoked salmon, crab, Foie Gras, Vodka, and Iberian ham are also for sale. The elegant restaurant has an Art Nouveau décor:

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Café-Restaurant Paris London, Place de la Madeleine #20:

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At La Maison de la Truffe (#19), the rare and sought-after delicacy is well represented. Truffle varieties sold include: Burgundy, scallop carpaccio with Brumale truffles, White Alba, Black, and Summer. A restaurant and tasting room offers a selection of dishes prepared with truffles. There is also a shop for gourmet gifts including truffle-infused Armagnac:

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Aristocratic grocer Hédiard (no. 21) is even older than Fauchon. Ferdinand Hédiard introduced Parisians to the joys of exotic fruits in the 1850s and Hédiard jams, marmalades, chocolates, biscuits, teas, confections, spices and pâtes de fruit are still bestsellers today, lined up with an enticing array of oils and spices and a fantastic wine cellar. Hediard is the ultimative upscale Parisian food shop. The bold black and red striped insignia is prominent on the boxes and tins of packaged foods. The fresh food counters offer premium quality fruits and vegetables, take out and prepared foods, pastries, cheeses, and Foie Gras. The boutique also has an extensive wine cellar and restaurant. The shop is CLOSED:

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Founded in 1886 by Auguste Fauchon and revamped by designer Christian Biecher. Fauchon is one of the leading luxury gourmet shops in Paris (between # 26 and # 30 (between#26 and #30 Place de la Madeleine) and around the world. You cannot miss the gorgeous pink packaging that rivals the fashion boutiques of Avenue Montaigne. Two outlets adjacent to each other. One shop carries mostly packaged products with their signature colors of hot pink and black, including chocolates, biscuits, cookies, candies, tea, coffee, jellies, jams, and mustard. The other offers an extensive line of prepared and takeout foods, including cakes and pastries, appetizers, quiches, cheeses, caviar, hams, patés, and a bread bakery. There are tables to eat the prepared foods. A restaurant, café, and cocktail lounge complete this set of premises:
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Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

The Madeleine Church (its full title: l’Egise Saint-Marie Madeleine), the anchor of the square, is a neo-classical, Greco-Roman style temple and originally started as a shrine to the battles Napoleon had won. During the period known as the First Republic (1792-1804), following the French Revolution, the foundations of earlier sacred buildings were removed and discussions were had as to what to do with the space. As France had been de-Christianized during the Revolution a civic rather than a religious function for the building was decided upon; various suggestions were put forward including a new site for the Bank of France. Considerations were brought to a halt, however, when in 1804 Napoleon crowned himself Emperor. What followed was one of the most ambitious propaganda programs of the nineteenth century. As well as looting works from the world’s finest collections to display in the newly refurbished Louvre, renamed the Musée Napoleon, some of the greatest artists and sculptors of the age were recruited to exalt the new emperor. It was only fitting that Napoleon would turn to architects, too, to realize his vision of an imperial capital city. Three monuments of particular note were constructed with this end in view: the Arc de Triomphe, the Vendôme Column and the church at the Place de la Madeleine. To celebrate the Napoleonic army achievement, having defeated the Austrians in the Battle of Austerlitz in 1805, a competition to select the best design for the Temple was established in 1806. The competition had to be judged by to a jury selected from the Imperial Academy. As it turned out, it was Napoleon who opted for the design of one Pierre-Alexandre Vignon (1763-1828). Vignon, who had trained under the great neoclassical architect Claude Ledoux, envisioned a peripteral temple (a temple surrounded by a single row of columns). Lacking Ledoux’s more visionary character, however, Vignon’s design for the exterior was basically a scaled up version of the Maison Carrée in Nîmes. But the project was abandoned after Napoleon was exiled. The Bourbon Restoration (1814-30) sought to revive the relationship between church and state. For this reason it was decided, as the temple was still incomplete, to return to the pre-Revolution purpose of the building project, namely to construct a church dedicated to Mary Magdalene. Mary Magdalene has very strong connections with France. According to tradition she was among the first Christian proselytizers: after the crucifixion she journeyed to Provence from the Holy Land converting the French to Christianity. 

Open every day from 9.30 to 19.00. FREE. Admire the church’s architecture, listed as a historical monument in 1915. Its tall columns of 20 meters invite you to meet this neoclassical monster in Paris. Unlike the Maison Carrée though, the portico of La Madeleine has eight columns rather than six. These fluted Roman Corinthian columns – there are fifty-two of them in all – rise up to a staggering twenty meters and encompass the entire structure:

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 Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Note the pediment frieze, designed by Philippe Joseph Henri Lemaire in 1829 (the Bourbon Restoration). The subject is The Last Judgment, a centuries-old motif found on relief sculptures above the doors of countless churches and cathedrals. While Lemaire largely follows iconographical convention, depicting Christ the Judge at the center of the composition and on His right the archangel Gabriel with his horn announcing the Day of Judgment and on His left the archangel Michael wielding the sword of justice, it is in the figure of Mary Magdalene kneeling at the foot of Christ that the underlying message of the sculpture is revealed:

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Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

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The church's bronze doors bear reliefs representing the Ten Commandments. The bottom relief - Nathan the prophet Confronts David the king:

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In contrast to the severity of its exterior - on entering the church, we are faced with a surprisingly opulent spectacle. Inside, the church has a single nave with three domes, lavishly gilded in a decor inspired by Renaissance artists. At the rear of the church, above the high altar, stands a statue by Charles Marochetti depicting St Mary Magdalene being carried up to heaven by two angels:

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Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

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A History of Christianity, a painting by Jules-Claude Ziegler on one of the domes:

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Above the entrance door is the famous pipe organ, built by Aristide Cavaillé-Coll, on which such composers as Camille Saint-Saëns and Gabriel Fauré played:

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Baptism of Christ by François Rude:

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From L'église de la Madeleine - head southwest on Place de la Madeleine. Turn right to stay on Place de la Madeleine, 90 m. Turn left to stay on Place de la Madeleine, 20 m. Turn right onto Galerie de la Madeleine, 65 m. Galerie De La Madeleine resides west to the church. It connects Rue Boissy d'Anglas and Place de la Madeleine. The French architect, Théodore Charpentier (1797 – 1867) specialized in designing theatres and restaurants. Amongst other things, he rebuilt the Opéra Comique after it was destroyed by fire in 1838, he designed the neo-Renaissance decor of the restaurant, “Trois Frères Provençaux”, in the Palais-Royal and he also built the Café Pierron. In 1842, he turned his attention to the Place de la Madeleine then, as now, an elegant and very expensive part of Paris. Charpentier was charged by the people who owned the Société du passage Jouffroy with designing and building a Galerie, a passage couvert, between the Place de la Madeleine and the rue Boissy d’Anglais, the Galerie de la Madeleine. Work began on the Galerie in 1840 and it was opened in 1846:

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From Galerie De La Madeleine - head BACK southeast toward Place de la Madeleine, 65 m. Slight right onto Place de la Madeleine, 120 m. Continue onto Boulevard de la Madeleine for 210 m. and stop at the city’s largest wine store, Lavinia, at 3-5 Boulevard de la Madeleine:

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Head east on Boulevard de la Madeleine toward Rue de Caumartin, 40 m. Turn left at Place Henri Salvador onto Rue de Caumartin, 25 m. Continue onto Rue de Sèze, 140 m. Turn right onto Rue Vignon. The street bears the name of Pierre-Alexandre Vignon ( 1763 - 1828 ), architect of the Church of the nearby Madeleine. 140 m. further note Helmut Newcake - Patisserie without Gluten - rue Vignon #28. A paradise for GF people:

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At #32 rue Vignon - you find L'Atelier des Sens - Food & Drink Classes & Cooking Workshops - for the whole family: parents and children. English classes are available.

We had our lunch at Paris - Le Roi du Pot au Feu , 34 rue Vignon. Pot au Feu is a beef boiled with vegetables served with red wine (typical winter dish in France). Recommended. Simple, delicious food. Reasonable prices. Efficient service:

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We retrace our steps and walk BACK along rue Vignon - heading to the Opera garnier. 34 Rue Vignon. Head south on Rue Vignon toward Rue de Sèze, 180 m. Turn left onto Rue de Sèze, 140 m. The road received its name in honor of Raymond de Sèze (1748-1828), one of the lawyers of Louis XVI. Continue onto Rue de Caumartin, 25 m. Turn left onto Boulevard des Capucines, 150 m. L'Olympia, Olympia Hall or Paris Olympia is located at 28 Boulevard des Capucines (on your left). Exactly like the Moulin Rouge - this mythical hall was co-founded in 1888, by Joseph Oller and Charles Zidler. It opened in 1889 as the Montagnes Russes but was renamed the Olympia in 1893. Olympia played host to the most famous musicians, circuses, ballets, and operettas. It declined during and after WW2. Bruno Coquatrix revived it as a music hall with a grand re-opening in February 1954. Édith Piaf achieved great acclaim at the Olympia giving several series of recitals from January 1955 until October 1962. Dalida is the biggest solo icon that has performed there. The Olympia was like her second home. Her first performance in Olympia was in early 1956 at auditions held by Eddie Barclay and Bruno Coquatrix. It was then when she was discovered and chosen to sign contract. Same year she would support Charles Aznavour for his concert. First own concert in Olympia she had was in 1959. After that she would perform in Olympia every 3-4 years, singing for 30 nights in row, all of sold out. The Beatles performed eighteen days (16 January – 4 February 1964) of concerts at the Olympia Theatre, playing two and sometimes three shows a day. Jacques Brel's 1961 and 1964 concerts at L'Olympia are legendary. Marlene Dietrich's performed in the Olympia in 1962.

Turn left onto Rue Scribe to see two iconic hotels in Paris. This street honours Eugène Scribe (1791-1861), who directed the Théâtre Comique Français from 1820-50. At n° 2, the Grand Hôtel (nowadays the Intercontinental), was built in 1862 for the 1867 World Exhibition on the initiative of the Pereire brothers:Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

At #1 and #2 reside Hotel Scribe and Restaurante Lumière. The hotel was built in 1861 as part of the creation of the Opera district. Many celebrities were residents in this hotel, including Josephine Baker who made it her Parisian residence until year 1968:

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Le Lumière restaurant is adjacent to Hotel Scribe. The restaurant’s name is derived from the Lumière brothers, Auguste and Louis, who presented here the first public projection of their new invention : the cinematography, the 28th of December 1895. The event still inhabits the premises thanks to the numerous period snapshots that adorn the room.

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Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

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Head north on Rue Scribe toward Impasse Sandrie, 90 m. Make a U-turn at Impasse Sandrie and the Fragonard Perfume Museum, 9 Rue Scribe is on the right. The Musée du Parfum, also known as the Fragonard Perfume Museum, is a French private museum of perfume. The museum was created in 1983 by the Fragonard perfume company within a Napoleon III town-house (built 1860). Its rooms contain period furnishings and perfume exhibits, including antique perfume bottles, containers, toiletry sets, stills for steam distillation of perfume extracts, etc. Displays show how perfumes are made today, and present the history of perfume manufacturing and packaging. Of particular interest is an orgue à parfum (perfume organ) with tiers of ingredient bottles arranged around a balance used to mix fragrances. The museum is open daily; admission is free. Commercial:

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But, the best sight from rue Scribe - is of the Paris Opera Garnier. Paris has two operas, the Garnier Opera House and the Opéra Bastille (bastille square). The Opera Garnier is also called "Opera de Paris". It was built under Napoleon III you can see the N of Napoleon on the façade. The visit of the interior of the Opera House is not free. If you find a seat it's better to go to a show to enjoy the beauty of the concert hall:

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Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Palais Garnier - the National Opera of Paris is open: every day from 10.00 to 17.00. Closed the 1st of January and the 1st of May. It is closed also on: Monday 2 July 2018, Tuesday 11 September 2018, Wednesday 26 September 2018, Thursday 27 September 2018, Friday 28 September 2018 until 13.00, Sunday 30 September 2018, Monday 1er October 2018, Wednesday 3 October 2018, Saturday 6 October 2018, Sunday 7 Ocotber 2018, Friday 9 November 2018, Saturday 10 November 2018, 
Wednesday 14 November 2018 until 12.00, Saturday 17 November 2018, 
Saturday 15 December 2018, Tuesday 25 December 2018. Prices: 12 € Youngsters (12-25): 8 €. Book your tickets for the guided tour in advance. Online tickets: https://visites.operadeparis.fr/selection/event/seat?perfId=536976513&productId=517971834

 To reach the Palais Garnier: Metro: Opéra station, lines 3,7,8. RER: Auber station, line A. Bus: routes 20, 21, 22, 27, 29, 42, 52, 53, 66, 68, 81, 95.  

Garnier Opera House, located on Place de l'Opera is one of Paris' greatest landmarks. It was originally called the Salle des Capucines because of its location on the Boulevard des Capucines in the 9th arrondissement of Paris, but soon became known as the Palais Garnier in recognition of its opulence and its architect. It was designed by Charles Garnier in a Neo-Baroque style and it is an architectural masterpieces of its time. The Palais Garnier is "probably the most famous opera house in the world, a symbol of Paris". Built between 1865-1872, it was designed to impress from both outside and inside. This was the time of Napoleon III, when much of the Paris we know and love today was built. The whole area of the Opera Garnier was completely reconstructed by Baron Haussmann, appointed by Napoleon to modernize Paris but especially to open up this congested medieval city.

From the outside, a multi colored marble facade is topped by golden statues and the names of opera legends. The top of the main facade is adorned with golden statues representing harmony and Poetry. Looking over those two is Apollo. Below, the façade is adorned with the busts of great composers, the best-known are Mozart and Beethoven. The Palais Garnier also houses the Bibliothèque-Musée de l'Opéra de Paris (Paris Opera Library-Museum). Although the Library-Museum is no longer managed by the Opera and is part of the Bibliothèque nationale de France, the museum is included in the guided tour of the Palais Garnier. The Opera building is gorgeous in its exterior and very ornate, sometimes breath-taking in its interiors. The decoration inside is amazing. Allow, at least, 1.5 hours for the guided tour:

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Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

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The Entrance Hall:

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Garnier did not waste much time and intended that visitors would go from one climax to another. For us, this means ascending to the Grand Staircase. The Grand Staircase is… huge. It’s actually quite a piece of engineering marvel. The staircase is housed a huge nave made of pink, green and white marble:

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Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

No doubt, the highlight of your visit to the Opera Garnier, is the Grand Foyer. This huge 18 meters high, 154 meters long and 13 meters wide hall, was intended as a place to take a break, mingle, and perhaps close a few deals. It is purposely located just outside the highest paying boxes. The Grand Foyer of the Palais Garnier, inspired by the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles:

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The auditorium is not always accessible to visitors. You cannot actually go down to the stage level but can get a great view of this massive horseshoe shaped theatre. Palais Garnier auditorium and stage:

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the main highlight is the famous Chagall ceiling and the 8-ton chandelier hanging down from it. Chagall’s masterpiece was actually painted only in 1965, replacing a few others before it. Chagall's Opéra Garnier Ceiling:

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Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

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Just outside the Grand Hall, you can step out for some ‘fresh’ Paris air and enjoy fine views out on the balcony. You can imagine how the opera goers felt when sipping champagne up here, having the whole town watching them from down below. The Opera Terrace:

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The Opera Square from the Palais Garnier Terrace:

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Here, completing our visit in Palais Garnier. We have to options: heading east to the Grand Boulevards or to the west to the the grand stores (magasins) in the Boulevard Haussmann. We opted for the second option. But, before heading to Place Diahagilev - we make a small "loop" or detour to Édouard VII Square.  From the Opera continue north-west along Rue Auber 75 m. Turn left onto Rue Boudreau, 50 m.  On the first turn to the left, at 7 rue Boudreau, stands the Théâtre de l'Athénée. Renovated in 1996 and classified a historical monument, it is among the most beautiful buildings in Paris:

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Turn left onto Square de l'Opéra-Louis Jouvet, 100 m. Turn right onto Place Édouard VII, 25 m. The main attraction, here, is the statue of Edward VII (1841-1910) king of England. Opposite - the Edouard VII - Sacha Guitry Theater. The English King Edward VII  was known as "the most Parisian of English kings". Naturally, it was an English architect, William Sprague , who built a theater in the center of the square in 1913 . Sacha Guitry , is a French playwright , actor , director , director and screenwriter , born on February 21 , 1885 in St. Petersburg ( Russia ) and died on July 24 , 1957 in Paris. He played and directed many plays in this theatre. Noel Coward (UK) and Orson Wells (USA) also played and directed in this theatre. The history of famous performances and plays started at 1916 and, still, exists, for more than 100 years !!!

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From square Édouard-VII we return northward. Head northwest on Édouard VII Square, 25 m. Turn left to stay on Édouard VII Square, 15 m. Turn left onto Rue Bruno Coquatrix, 65 m. Turn right onto Rue de Caumartin, 170 m. Turn right onto Rue Auber, 15 m. Turn left onto Rue des Mathurins, 190 m. Here, in the intersection with rue Scribe - you get a pretty sight of the Opera - Garnier:

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Turn left onto Rue Scribe, 10 m. Enter Place Diaghilev, 40 m. This square owes its name to the creator of Ballets Russes, Serge Diaghilev (1872-1929).  The proximity to the Opera influenced here in naming this square. The Ballets Russes  was a ballet company based in Paris that performed between 1909 and 1929 throughout Europe and on tours to North and South America. The Ballets Russes is widely regarded as the most influential ballet company of the 20th century. The company's productions created a huge sensation, completely reinventing the art of performing dance, integrating many visual arts and disciplines. It also introduced European and American audiences to tales, music, and design motifs drawn from Russian folklore. The influence of the Ballets Russes lasts to the present day. Diaghilev Square is served by the Metro lines 3 and 9 at the Havre-Caumartin station and lines  7 and  9 at the Chaussée d'Antin - La Fayette station. Bus lines: 22, 42, 52, 53.

For well over a century, Paris’s three legendary monuments to shopping – Le Bon Marché, Au Printemps and Galeries Lafayette – have beckoned travelers from near and far with the promise of untold, and accessible, treasure. Still functioning much as they did at the time of their inception in the mid- to late-19th century, these elegant "grandes dames" are important historic landmarks in their own right, with as much to say about the evolution of Paris as their more lofty touristic counterparts. These immense stores both signaled and facilitated the transition between old and new Paris. By the 1830s a new genre of store emerged that grouped a variety of goods in a single location. A few of these ‘magasins de nouveautés’ initiated a vigorous expansion that included organizing the store into distinct departments on several floors around a glass-covered courtyard. Although at least two of these newfangled department stores pre-dated Le Bon Marché, which was founded in 1852, none was as innovative or displayed the shrewd management, sales and display tactics – not to mention advertising strategies – that distinguished the newer store from the others and kept it at the forefront of retailing for decades. Le Bon Marché and Au Printemp’s sales and merchandising strategies had far-reaching effects on Paris society and France at large. Via their Paris flagship stores as well as through an ever-expanding catalogue and mail order business, these department stores not only promoted seasonal styles, creating the need to constantly update a wardrobe according to the trends, but they also disseminated bourgeois values to the whole of French society. Commodities once accessible only to the rich became items of mass consumption, thus blurring class lines and fortifying the rising middle class. The architecture of the grands magasins was also key in their mounting success. By the 1850s and 1860s, Baron Charles Haussmann’s massive redevelopment programme was quickly transforming old Paris, demolishing entire cramped and dingy blocks to make way for capacious boulevards and the uniformly pristine white-fronted buildings so familiar today. Ever-expanding stores hired young, ambitious architects – for example, Gustave Eiffel contributed to the expansion of Le Bon Marché in 1876. On the Right Bank, the neighbouring Galeries Lafayette and Au Printemps continue to innovate with an eye to their glorious past. Galeries Lafayette with an emphasis on art and creation via its imaginative, fashion-forward windows and the new Galerie des Galeries exhibition space, inaugurated in 2013. Au Printemps, meanwhile, has undergone a luxury new makeover and in 2013 celebrated the opening of its spectacular new Louvre branch, its first in 32 years, just opposite the museum entrance in the Carousel du Louvre. Parisians are très chic and the department stores here carry all the latest in the fashion scene. The big stores stock most of the international brand names and there are some really nice designer stuff to be had in the shops.

Galeries Lafayette: In 1895, two cousins from Alsace, Théophile Bader and Alphonse Kahn, had set up a haberdasher’s shop just down the street, at the intersection of Rue de la Chassée d’Antin and Rue La Fayette. This canny location easily capitalized on its proximity to the Opéra Garnier, the Grands Boulevards and Gare Saint-Lazare, where crowds of Parisians and out-of-towners alighted each day. From there, the cousins expanded to occupy five adjacent buildings. But it wasn’t until 1912 that Galeries Lafayette came fully into its own, with the unveiling of its spectacular domed flagship, designed in the height of Art Nouveau splendour and including a sweeping ironwork staircase rising 43 metres to the store’s iconic neo-Byzantine stained glass dome, which remains its symbol. Boasting 96 departments, Galeries Lafayette, the only one of the three grands magasins that’s still family owned, quickly became the monument to fashion and luxury which it remains to this day. This grand Parisien department store is a must visit. Its history goes back 123 years (as for 2018...) and it’s the most famous and spectacular of Parisien department stores. Here you’ll find nine floors of brand names like Jean Paul Gaultier, Christian Lacroix, Thierry Mugler, Armani, Chanel, John Galliano, Prada, Sonia Rykiel, etc., and if you’re lucky, you might also see some just-as-famous shoppers in the store. Galaries Lafayette’s main Haussmann store is believed to be just as visited as the Eiffel Tower. With approximately 120 million visitors each year, it is considered to be the leading shopping centre of Europe. 50,000 visitors a day come to discover or buy clothes, fashion, decoration, delicatessen, jewelery or luxury products. Don't miss its fabulous Art Nouveau glass domes. Looking down at the layers and layers of luxury goods, you get a sense of being in fashion paradise. The main building (with the large dome) contains women's fashion (from casual to haute couture), jewelery, perfume. On the same side of the street, you will find the Lafayette Man. Finally on the other side of the street the Lafayette House offers linens and Lafayette Gourmet delicatessen. Opening hours: Monday to Saturday: 9.30 to 20.30 (until 20.45 on Thursdays and Saturdays), Sunday: 11.00 to 19.00.

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

La Terrasse Lafayette is an attraction in its own.  La Terrasse des Galeries is a rooftop cafe with excellent views of the city. From there you can also see also the famous glass dome:

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

The Opera - Garnier from La Terrasse Lafayette:

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From Galeries Lafayette, Haussmann 40 we walk 500 m. westward to arrive to the Printemps department store. Head northwest on Rue de la Chaussée d'Antin, 140 m. Turn left onto Rue de Provence, 350 m and arrive to Printemps Haussmann, 64 Boulevard Haussmann. In 1865, former Bon Marché employee Jules Jaluzot took advantage of an auspicious spot just around the corner from the bustling Gare Saint-Lazare train station, on the recently created Boulevard Haussmann, to open Au Printemps with funds from his wife, a substantially wealthy actress from the Comédie Française. Within two decades, Jaluzot, a ferocious innovator in his own right, had expanded Au Printemps to an entire city block – a soaring glass and wrought iron structure embellished with statues, sumptuous mosaics and elaborate gilding. Its lovely exterior is remarkably like Zola’s model for the fictional store Au Bonheur des Dames, but since the novel was published the same year that Au Printemps opened, this is difficult to confirm. Au Printemps was the first department store to install elevators and the first building in France to be lit by electricity, a mere three years after the introduction of Thomas Edison’s electric bulb. After a fire in 1920, Au Printemps’ interior was rebuilt to include a magnificent jewel-coloured cupola, which was entirely dismantled in 1939 to preserve it from air attacks, and restored to its modern-day magnificence in the 1970s. Le Printemps is yet another upmarket Parisien department store. You can shop till you drop here, but before you get to that stage, you can refuel at one of the store’s seven catering outlets which offer anything from a quick snack to more substantial fare. Deli-Cieux, a restaurant on the 9th floor offers light and original grilled and stir-fried dishes so you can dine and enjoy the great panoramic views. Classified as a Historical Monument, Le Printemps is spread over three buildings, 25 floors, one day of which is not enough to strip all the wonders. The store is organized in three units, each corresponding to a store: the Printemps de la Mode, developed on its seven floors (accessories, luxury, international designers, fashion and trend, shoes, etc ..) an auditorium; the Spring of Beauty and the House which includes 9 floors (lingerie, beauty, care and institutes, luxury and delicacies, kitchen and utensils, linens, children, luggage ...) and the Spring Man, five floors dedicated to gentlemen, from footwear to major brands and jeans. Apart from its million references and more than 300 brands sold exclusively, this temple of glamour and luxury presents a wonder on the top floor of the Fashion Spring, the restaurant, with its magnificent Art Deco dome, classified, which opens on the rooftops of Paris, as a tribute to the City of Lights. A must see. Opening hours: Monday to Saturday: from 9.35 to 20.00 (until 20.45 on Thursdays and Saturdays), Sunday: 11.00 to 19.00. Note: you can photo the glass roof only from floors 1-3:

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Climb to the 7th floor - to see marvelous sights of Paris:

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Citywalk in , France, visiting things to do in France, Travel Blog, Share my Trip

Printemps from Rue du Havre (which crosses Bolulevard Haussmann):

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Havre - Caumartin Metro station is a few steps south to the Printemps department store.

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