Luxury department store Samaritaine Paris Pont-Neuf overlooking the Seine has reopened after major renovations. The historic building has been restored by the DFS group, which is majority-owned by LVMH alongside co-founder Robert Miller.
Éléonore de Boysson, president of DFS, Europe and the Middle East, said in a statement: “We welcome you to the store – one of the oldest in the capital – to discover a new Parisian experience with vibrant modernity driven by an inclusive, joyful, generous lifestyle that Parisians are known for and that tourists adore.
“DFS designed Samaritaine’s rebirth, firmly anchored in its roots, by embodying the spirit of the founding couple, Ernest Cognacq and Marie-Louise Jaÿ, but with an eye resolutely turned towards the 21st century with exclusive concepts and an uninhibited way of mixing luxury and designers that befits our time.”
The 215,000 square foot store spans across seven floors of retail space and features 600 “carefully selected” brands and the largest beauty floor in Europe.
Paris has a new luxury shopping destination – Samaritaine
In 2005, for safety reasons, Samaritaine had to close its doors, and the LVMH group undertook an ambitious renovation project, including completely restoring the Art Nouveau and Art Deco buildings on the Rue de Rivoli side, while a new modern building by the Japanese architectural agency Sanaa has been added.
Key architectural highlights include the Samaritaine being bathed in natural light filtering through from several points including the iconic glass roof of the Art Nouveau building (now called Pont-Neuf), the original breakthrough bay windows in the Eiffel structure as well as two new skylights designed by the Sanaa agency.
Inside, the spaces echo the historical architecture with a nod to the future. The Pont-Neuf side has a chic and refined aesthetic with terrazzo floor, ironwork repainted in grey with Art Deco and Art Nouveau details to showcase high-end and emerging designer fashion. While on the Rivoli side there is a modern industrial-style urban feel, with three floors designed to appeal to Millennials featuring streetwear.
On the Pont-Neuf side, the ground floor dedicated to accessories with luxury leather good brands Dior, Louis Vuitton and Celine, all having their own boutiques. While multi-brand spaces featuring essential French design houses such as Jérôme Dreyfuss, Isabel Marant, A.P.C. etc. sit alongside new brands Néerlan- dais Wandler, Dragon Diffusion, Danse Lente and Vanina’s jewellery.
Up to the first floor and it is all dedicated to women’s fashion from luxury to contemporary brands revolving around three worlds that aim to demonstrate the Parisian mix-and-match style. Around the grand staircase, under the glass roof, the light parquet and custom rugs reflect the world of luxury with iconic houses including Dior, Fendi, Gucci, and Prada. There is also a section devoted to designers like Loewe, Dries van Noten, Alexander McQueen, Marni, Chloé, Sacai, and Alaïa, as well as contemporary fashion from Sandro, Maje, Self-Portrait, Rouje, Ganni, and Rotate. In addition, there is also an incubator space highlighting young talent including Awake, Petar Petrov, Gauchere and Khaite.
Shoes have all been put on the fourth floor with the space featuring around 50 women’s brands, such as Chanel, Dior, Gucci, Jimmy Choo, Manolo Blahnik, and Christian Louboutin, alongside designers such as Alaïa, The Row, By Far, Ganni, Studio Amelia, Roger Vivier, Repetto, Isabel Marant, and Veja.
For men, the department store offers a head-to-toe offering on the third floor featuring classic brands such as Louis Vuitton, Dior, and Gucci, alongside luxury streetwear names including Off-White, Balmain and Stone Island. There is also a large multi-brand space with brands like Acne, Maison Margiela and Thom Browne, and a footwear section featuring Saint Laurent boots, Alexander McQueen sneakers, and shoes by Balmain, Acne and Balenciaga.
Jewellery and watches have been placed around the store, on the second floor Blancpain, Vacheron Constantin, Chaumet, Tiffany and Chanel each having their own boutiques, while in the basement watches and costume jewellery from Swarovski, APM Monaco, Michael Kors and Swatch are found, and on the ground floor, Van Cleef and Arpels, Cartier and Bulgari have dedicated boutiques.
The Rivoli side is described as a “playground of fashion” where shoppers can discover “the latest trends in urban fashion while enjoying an espresso sipped in front of street art” with a concept store that aims to break free from traditional department store codes.
Designed to appeal to Millennials, the concept space brings together fashion, accessories, beauty, watchmaking, art and tech. Fashion brands featured includes JW Anderson, Comme Des Garcons, Marni, Casablanca, Ahluwalia, Juun.J, Pushbutton, APC, Maison Kitsuné, Canada Goose, Northface, Patagonia and Shinzo Green.
Samaritaine features Europes largest beauty hall
In addition, the store offers the biggest beauty space in Europe covering the entire basement of Samaritaine with more than 200 brands. On the Pont-Neuf side, institutional luxury and essentials like Dior, Chanel and Guerlain mingle in a Parisian setting by Hubert de Malherbe replete with parquet floors, gilded brass structures and mosaics in a nod to the building’s Art Nouveau origins. On the Rivoli side, trendy and unisex brands like Aesop, The Ordinary and Le Labo are presented in the Pure Beauty area in an urban setting imagined by cigüe with waxed concrete, metallic furniture, and raw materials like wood.
Samaritaine is much more than just a fashion, lifestyle and beauty destination, the store also houses 12 places to eat and drink, from pastries to cocktails, coffee, salads, and fine dining.
“More than just a shopping centre, we want Samaritaine to be a place of discovery, surprise and experience,” added de Boysson. “A place where customers can witness the avant-garde of creation and taste the cuisine of a contemporary chef, treat themselves to a piece of luxury while enjoying an espresso prepared by an expert barista, discover artisanal designer jewels and relax in the spa, or meet young artists and discuss the surrounding architecture with a historical guide.”