Wednesday, February 10, 2010

La Samaritaine: work in progress

You may know of La Samaritaine, the large department store founded in 1869 by Ernest Cognacq and Marie-Louise Jaÿ located near the Pont Neuf... (I already posted twice about it). It's currently closed while it is being turned into a hotel, offices, stores, etc. Before it's done (2013), they installed a huge painted wall around it. On this wall you can read about the history of the store and see a few photos and ads from when La Samaritaine was the place to shop at. If you're not currently in Paris and have no way of learning about this Paris monument, well, you can always check Wikipedia!


  1. Oh, yes, I know it well! And I miss it when I come to Paris. Wonder how many people actually read this. (I would.)

  2. Cool photo too! Did you take this very late?

  3. That's a shame.
    On trouve tout à la Samaritaine!

  4. I really miss this store, especially the terrace! Fond memories!

  5. This has been taking so long!

    The Cognacq-Jay museum is a jewel, for those who like intimate museums.

  6. So the deal has been struck?? I was interested to read it would include some low income housing? Correct me Eric if I have that wrong. I was amazed because that would not happen here with the other planned shops, hotels etc. I'm glad I got a nice night shot last summer for now it will be under wraps for quite some time.

  7. This was one of my "must"places when I would come to Paris so I am very interested.

  8. Sadly, I never got to visit La Samaritaine when it was open. Got some good photos of the bldg. back in 2008. Can't wait to see the restoration...will it really be done in 2013?
    Thanks, Eric.

  9. I know that almost everyone who has gone to Paris in years past has their "La Samaritaine" story. I had to run in to buy an umbrella once because it was sleeting on my birthday..April 10th!! Imagine!!?? April in Paris does mean "sleet" sometime! I'm glad they are going to find a way to keep this beautiful building with so much history around. It would be a crime if they had ripped it down!

  10. I saw the building when we were in Paris in October, I don't know if it was still open then. I thought it looked as if it had once been a really splendid place, but had faded. I hope that they make a good job of "re-modelling " it. I love the way that Parisians "wrap" their buildings whilst work is going on.

  11. Interesting pic. What is written in fact? I can't get it. (ien en moi ?? ou en mot..??)
    Agree Diane. Isn't it the same process with people?
    I wrap myself too when re-modelling me is needed, as a protection. Sometimes the problem is that the re-modelling job is not going on because of the lack of oxygen under the wrap stuff. Obviously ...
    La Samaritaine. I used to go there when younger. Nice area. Does the Kong restaurant still open? It looks fun. Fashion. Modern. Artificial too.

  12. Merci! This is really interesting. I read once that Emile Zola's book, Au Bonheur des Dames, was inspired by La Samaritaine.

    Two posts in a row regarding painting. I read in France24 that Sarkozy's dad is a painter. I did not know that. What do you think of his work? I wonder what his early work looked like.

  13. very nice photo, reminds me somehow of marville, capturing a very precise not lasting moment of paris. still regret la samaritaine closing

  14. Oh great!
    It's good to have news about Samaritaine and know that it will reopen for sure!

  15. I'm sad, because I never got to shop at La Samaritaine. On my first visit to Paris, I walked by it. I had read an article in The New Yorker, which said that Paris was changing so much -- and so quickly, which prompted me to make my first trip to Paris, actually. I had to see it before it became one giant Starbucks coffee shop.

  16. I so miss La Samaritaine. That was my favourite department store in Paris. I never recovered when it closed :)

  17. I miss La Samaritaine a lot. It was always there whenever we visited Paris, and we loved the interior and the terrace. Most memorably, we were there when Paris observed 3 minutes of silence for the people murdered by the 9-11 attackers in 2001.

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  19. I loved la Samaritaine. It was an great place just to wander around or spend some time in the coffee shop looking the river or the people walking by below you. We particularly loved the kitchen shop. The roof too was a must to vist. It has a fantastic view over the city and had a plan of the city telling the landmarks which were/are in front of you.
    My wife and I look at it with sadness now wondering will it ever open again and will it have the same atmosphere. Roll on 2013.