near to Luxembourg Gardens in Paris’ Odéon district
The Odéon district is a showcase for the French capital. Tourists come from the world over to visit its galleries and theatres, whilst students and members of parliament enjoy its historic cafés. Architecture enthusiasts explore its paved streets seeking out Paris’ emblematic heritage: from Saint-Germain market to Luxembourg Gardens. In these exciting surroundings, in the shadow of the impressive Saint-Sulpice church, is an almost private islet where an unusual tranquillity and elegance reign. It is true that the Rue-de-l'Ancienne-Comédie is very much a part of French history. It was here in 1782 that the “Comédiens ordinaires du Roi”, the company of actors from the Comédie-Française theatre, were attributed Paris’ first monument of a theatre.
The entrance hall, reached via a set of heavy carriage doors, is dotted with Tuscan Doric order columns that match those featured in the vestibule of the aforementioned theatre, and reveals a flower-filled courtyard. On the side, a discreet door opens into the art studio, currently used by a photographer, giving prominence to the contrast with the restored areas of the building.
The living room, with a cement floor, is crossed from end to end by a basket-handle arch, supported by a central pillar. Probably vestiges of the area where carriages were once stored, these stone features enhance the verticality of the room. An open space in the foreground reveals double trap doors in the continuity of the apron wall. These open into a 16 m², vaulted cellar with a packed mud floor. A key feature of the premises, spanning more than four linear metres, a birch wood bookshelf unit stands out from the wall in the middle distance and can be used as a T-shaped desk. In the stone embrasure of the second window, a leather bench with drawers, completes this custom-designed storage unit.
With its door, concealed on the right-hand side, and its glass fanlight, the copper-lined shower room constitutes the only enclosed area in the art studio. It is followed by a column cabinet which, combining a water supply point, a copper sink and cupboards, acts as a kitchen area.
In addition to its mythical address, which was notably a rallying point for the “Génération Perdue” (Lost Generation) and saw the publication of the original edition of Joyce’s Ulysses in the 1920’s, it is the ingenuity with which this property was designed that makes it so striking. Making use of contrasting materials, luminosity and space, comparing objects and organising areas through the use of opposites, stone and wood, the rough and the smooth, in a Laurent-Deroo architecture and design studio, Matthieu-Texier has nevertheless preserved an openness which gives free reign to the imagination and the addition of personal touches, whilst suggesting that the premises could be used for different purposes: as an office for a self-employed professional or as a reading room, a writer’s study, an art studio or even an ascetically elegant pied-à-terre.
|Reception area||29 m2|
|Living space||30.89 m2|
|Number of rooms||2|
|Number of bedrooms||1|
|Surface Cellar||15.92 m2|
|Number of lots||29|
|Annual average amount of the proportionate share of expenses||759 €|
Marine Veilleux +33 1 42 84 80 85
NB: The above information is not only the result of our visit to the property; it is also based on information provided by the current owner. It is by no means comprehensive or strictly accurate especially where surface areas and construction dates are concerned. We cannot, therefore, be held liable for any misrepresentation.