La Samaritaine

La Samaritaine (French pronunciation: [la samaʁitɛn]) was a large department store in Paris, France, located in the first arrondissement. The nearest métro station is Pont-Neuf, directly in front at the quai du Louvre and the rue de la Monnaie.[1] The company was owned by Ernest Cognacq and Marie-Louise Jaÿ who hired architect Frantz Jourdain to expand their original store.[1] It started as a small apparel shop and expanded to what became a series of department store buildings with a total of 90 different departments.[1] It is currently owned by LVMH, a luxury-goods maker. The store, which had been operating at a loss since the 1970s, was finally closed in 2005 purportedly because the building did not meet safety codes.[2] Plans for redeveloping the building involved lengthy complications, as the representatives of the store's founders argued with new owners LVMH over the building's future as a department store or a mixed-use development.[3] In 2010 it was finally announced that a Japanese firm had been chosen to redesign the building as a combination hotel/apartments/offices, with a small retail component.[3] It has been listed since 1990 as a monument historique by the French Ministry of Culture.[4]

La Samaritaine
La samaritaine as seen from the Pont Neuf.jpg
La Samaritaine as seen from the
General information
TypeDepartment store
Architectural styleArt Nouveau, Art Déco
LocationParis, France
Coordinates48°51′32″N 2°20′31.5″E / 48°51′32″N 2°20′31.5″E / 48.85889; 2.342083

Construction history

Plan of Magasins

Architect Frantz Jourdain was originally hired to assist in the remodeling and expansion of the existing store building, known as Magasin 1.[1] However, as the store's success continued to grow, Cognacq decided to expand into a building across the street, Magasin 2, which became the site for the Samaritaine as designed by Jourdain.[1] The construction of the building was done in stages, partly because the store had to continue to remain open in order to bring in revenue.[1] Much of the building was brought to the site prefabricated, allowing the construction to occur rapidly.[1] The building was proposed in 1905 and after five years of construction, the building, filling the entire block from rues de la Monnaie, Arbre-Sec, des Petres, and Baillet, was complete in 1910.[1] The original store, Magasin 1, was eventually updated with a steel and glass structure to match Magasin 2, which was located across the street.[1]

By the time the department store was completed in 1910, new movements, such as Fauvism, Cubism, and Werkbund, had come about and devalued the style of the Samaritaine.[1] In the 1920s, Cognacq requested for expansions of the department store.[1] City officials allowed for the expansions with the stipulation that Cognacq follow their specifications which centered around the utilization of a more current architectural style.[1] This was done with little opposition as both Cognacq and Jourdain were aware that the original style of the building was outdated.[1] During this reconstruction and expansion phase, the glass domes and decorative ironwork were removed.[1] The new addition was a collaboration between architects Jourdain and Henry Sauvage, completed between 1926 and 1928, which featured cream colored stone and was of the Art Deco style.[1] Similar to the original building in that it made use of the exposed steel however, its focus was much more geometry-based.[5] At the end of construction, the Samaritaine eventually consisted of four different Magasins of department stores reaching eleven stories in total.[1]

La Samaritaine was bought in 2001 by LVMH, the luxury-goods company that had just previously purchased Le Bon Marché. On 15 June 2005, in order to update the 19th-century building to modern standards of security, or for purposes of restructuring, as the labor unions believe, the department store was closed.[2] LVMH selected the Japanese architectural firm SANAA to renovate the building. Implementation of the new design has been blocked a number a times by local authorities for failure to adhere to planning requirements and for lack of visual compatibility with the surrounding buildings.[6] In June 2015, one of the Rivoli building permit is finalized and in September of the same year construction began.[3] This modern construction of the Samaritaine is designed to feature a hotel, restaurant, a brewery, cafes, offices, and housing and is projected to be complete in 2019.[3][7]

Other Languages
български: Самаритен
čeština: La Samaritaine
español: La Samaritaine
français: La Samaritaine
Nederlands: La Samaritaine
română: La Samaritaine
Tiếng Việt: La Samaritaine