Famous for its historical monuments, Paris is also a playground today for eminent international architects. The capital is multifaceted with old and contemporary buildings. Among these, palaces, museums and hôtel particuliers make up the wealth of Paris’s heritage. From the bold shapes of the Fondation Louis Vuitton to the monumental aspect of the Palais Brongniart and the retro style of the Hôtel du Collectionneur, here is a quick roundup of remarkable buildings that throw open their doors for your professional events.
Contemporary architecture: boundless imagination
Built in the 70s, the Centre Pompidou, also referred to as Beaubourg, is a fine example of architectural modernity. Just a stone’s throw from the Hôtel de Ville ‘City Hall’, it flaunts coloured pipes and an external escalator nicknamed the caterpillar. The same architects, Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, designed the adjoining square, the Piazza, to create a place accessible to everyone opening onto the city. Inside, the Musée d’art Moderne et Contemporain shows more than 100,000 works, that you will be able to see on a private visit combined with your professional event. These can range, from a reception for 100 people in the Atelier Brancusi to a cocktail party for 1,500 people with a panoramic view on the top floor.
Since opening in 2017, the Seine Musicale has become the fashionable cultural venue in the West of Paris. Built on the Île Seguin, this complex has an eclectic programme of events and the look of a liner sailing on the Seine. The ‘mainsail’, made of solar panels, rotates around a glass sphere that houses the Auditorium. Fitted out entirely in wood, the latter accommodates up to 1,150 people. For your major events, the Grand Seine's modular space can host up to 4,000 people, and several private lounges, up to 1,500 people. For your lunches or cocktails, Maison Lenôtre oversees the catering service.
The Grande Arche
The Grande Arche is the emblematic building of the La Défense business district and was inaugurated in 1989. Inspired by the Arc de Triomphe, this ‘window on the world,’ the expression used by its architect, was built as an extension of the royal road, Paris’ historic major route that links the Louvre to the West of Paris. More than 100 metres high, Le Toit de la Grande Arche has a 1,000 m² terrace with a 360° view of Paris and its surroundings. The 1,200 m² La City cultural space, restaurant and three amphitheatres are suited to all types of events. At the foot of the building, the Espace Grande Arche - VIPARIS has 3 multipurpose spaces spread over more than 5,000 m2, for up to 3,380 people.
Musée du Quai Branly – Jacques Chirac
The Musée du Quai Branly, inaugurated in 2006, is tucked away behind lush vegetation and a glass palisade opposite the Seine. The building, by eminent architect Jean Nouvel, comprises a long walkway and has a facade of coloured suspended ‘crates’. Dedicated to non-Western civilizations, the museum exhibits some 300,000 works and lets out its many spaces for your cocktail receptions for up to 2,000 guests for a sit-down meal and 500 for a lecture. Make this event unforgettable with the private hire of Les Ombres restaurant or the 5,000 m² panoramic terrace overlooking the Eiffel Tower and offer your guests a private tour of the museum.
Philharmonie de Paris
The Philharmonie de Paris opened in 2015 to form a cultural and musical complex with the Cité de la Musique, open to all publics. The building is recognizable by its facade covered with 340,000 aluminum birds. Designed like a hill by the architect Jean Nouvel, the walker can climb up to the belvedere to enjoy a unique view of the Parc de la Villette. At the heart of this complex is the Grande Salle Pierre Boulez, a fully modular 2,400-seater concert hallrenowned for its acoustics. Designed to be a lively place, the building also houses the Studio stage, rehearsal spaces, restaurant facilities and exhibition areas. The concert halls and other rooms are suited to all types of events.
The Fondation Louis Vuitton
On the edge of the Bois de Boulogne, near the Jardin d'Acclimatation, the Fondation Louis Vuitton has been showing major exhibitions of modern art since 2014. Nicknamed the iceberg because of its immaculately white structure, the surrounding water feature and the twelve curved glass sails, the building gives an impression of movement and lightness. To create these complex shapes, internationally renowned architect Franck Gehry revolutionized the principles of architecture by using unique 3D software. Inside, several areas can be privately hired for your professional events: the Reception Hall, the Auditorium, the three partially covered panoramic terraces on the roof, and the restaurant Le Franck.
Art deco style: a dive into the Roaring Twenties
Hôtel du Collectionneur *****
In the heart of the 8th arrondissement, the Hôtel du Collectionneur pays tribute to the pavilion of French decorator Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann created for the International Exhibition of Decorative Arts in 1925. Although the hotel was only built in 2004, its architects designed it like 1930s transatlantic that used to connect old Europe to the New World. With its ornate facade, monumental staircase, furniture and collection of art deco works, the 5-star establishment has achieved an amazing feat. Guests are plunged into the splendour of the 1930s will all modern comforts and state-of-the-art technology. Meeting spaces spread over 1,700 m² and a lavish reception room can host up to 650 people.
Founded in 1865, Printemps Haussmann is one of Paris's historic department stores. Behind its art deco facade, a listed historical monument, the place has adapted to technical and architectural developments over the course of time. In the 1930s, the sales areas were redesigned and used symmetry and art deco aesthetics to highlight products. In 1923, a 20-metre-diameter cupola created by master glassmaker Eugène Brière was installed illuminating the hall with its blue reflections. Dismantled during the Second World War and then restored, the cupola now houses the Brasserie Printemps available for private hire for a sit-down meal or a cocktail reception for up to 450 guests. For those interested in finding out more, Cultival, a specialist in original guided tours, takes you behind the scenes at this famous store.
Maison de la Mutualité
The Maison de la Mutualité was built in 1930, in the art deco style, to bring together the Mutuelles (various mutual insurance companies). Made up of a theatre and a banquet hall, it quickly became a major centre of French cultural and social life. Its location in the heart of the Latin Quarter, listed stone facade, and white marble and wrought iron staircase make it a truly unique place. In 2010, the events specialist GL Events took over the management of the venue and commissioned the architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte to renovate and modernize the building. Completely redesigned, this event spot on the Left Bank can now accommodate all types of trendy and connected events up to 2,000 people in its 11 modular spaces equipped with the latest sound, light and video projection technologies.
Palais des Congrès d’Issy
The Palais des Congrès d'Issy - VIPARIS, a listed historical monument in the art deco style, invites you to step into the heady atmosphere of the Roaring Twenties. The pink facade of the building constructed in 1930 in the West of Paris features remarkable works by master glass maker Louis Barillet and metalworker Raymond Subes. The site houses the Foyer Debussy, a symbol of 1930s architecture, and the Amphithéâtre Berlioz, shaped like a violin and offering excellent acoustics. Due to its many meeting room and reception areas spread across 3,000 m2, the venue is ideal for a huge variety of events such as cocktail receptions, shows and national and international congresses.
Neo-classic architecture: a return to ancient Greece
Musée de l’Homme (Palais de Chaillot)
Standing on Place du Trocadéro, the Palais de Chaillot is a monumental building with symmetrical architecture that illustrates the development of the art deco style into more sober forms. Like the neighbouring Palais de Tokyo, the Palais de Chaillot dates from the time of the Exposition Internationale des Arts et des Techniques de 1937. It is built on the site of the former Palais du Trocadéro and has two wings spanning out in an arc from the Esplanade des Droits de l’Homme, which affords a stunning view of the Champ-de-Mars and the Eiffel Tower. The architects of the time called on numerous artists, painters and sculptors to work on the building, which today houses four cultural institutions including the Musée de l’Homme available for private hire for exceptional events for up to 1,000 people.
Hôtel de Crillon
The Hôtel de Crillon, at the bottom of the Champs-Élysées on Place de la Concorde, is a historic Parisian palace. Built in 1758 by architect Jacques Ange Gabriel on the orders of king Louis XV of France, its monumental facade recalls Perrault’s colonnade at the Louvre. This hôtel particulier was for a long time the property of the Counts of Crillon before being bought and becoming in 1909 the first grand Parisian hotel. A witness to the history of France and the life of its illustrious hosts, it is now a listed historical monument. The palace was renovated in 2017 and offers 5 reception rooms perfectly adapted to prestigious private events for up to 100 people.
Monnaie de Paris-11 Conti
The Monnaie de Paris was built under Louis XV in 1775 by the architect Jacques-Denis Antoine. It stands on the site of the Hôtel de Conti on the left bank of the Seine, opposite the Louvre and the Pont Neuf. This neoclassical-style palace used to house a royal mint for manufacturing coins. Behind its imposing colonnaded facade along the embankments is a main courtyard in the shape of a horseshoe linking the various workshops still in activity. After renovation work in 2017, the Musée du 11 Conti opened to the public to show its collections and art professions. And for your tailor-made events, the reception rooms and courtyards are available for private hire offering you an exceptional setting in the heart of historic Paris.
Hôtel Salomon de Rothschild
Built in 1882, this superb hôtel particulier, a listed historical monument, is situated in the heart of the smart 8th arrondissement. Behind the huge porch lies a neoclassical-style late-18th-century residence. The former proprietor, the baroness Salomon de Rothschild, an avid collector, bequeathed her residence to the State, which transferred many its art works to the Louvre Museum. Although the garden is open to the public, you can only gain access to the Hôtel Salomon de Rothschild during an event. Managed by Viparis since 2014, the venue now plays host to all types of corporate or private events for up to1,300 guests in cocktail format.
It was in 1699 that Jules-Hardouin Mansart designed the octagonal shape and plans for the identical facades of the iconic Place Vendôme, previously named Place Louis-le-Grand. Some years later, the architect Pierre Bullet built the hôtel particulier behind the facade of number 19. Its rich owner gave it to his daughter for her marriage to the Comte d’Évreux after whom the residence was then named. Amidst famous palaces and jewellers, the Hôtel d’Évreux is a remarkable example of classical architecture of the end of the reign of Louis XIV. You can admire this architectural gem during a reception for up to 350 guests in one of the six reception rooms managed by the caterer Potel et Chabot.
Built in 1826 by Alexandre-Théodore Brongniart at the request of Napoleon, the Palais Brongniart was, for a long time, home to the Paris Stock Exchange. This listed historical monument in the neoclassical style is recognizable by a peristyle made up of 64 Corinthian columns. In many ways, the architecture reflects its previous function, as can be seen in the allegorical statues, the former trading room and the former Tribunal de Commerce room. While no broker has visited the Palais Brongniart since 1996, the place is now managed by GL Events, which has turned it into an ideal venue for holding private events and congresses for up to 600 people. As part of a desire for ongoing innovation, the Palais Brongniart has launched the initiative ‘Street Packing’ to dress its facade with gigantic ephemeral works. An opportunity to take another look at this Parisian monument!