Paris and Samaritaine!!!

Oh yes it was a love story, Paris and the Samaritaine dept store ,and we were there from 1990. My dear late wife Martine was very fond of it and we went as I needed to go lol! Well shopping was one of her force and the Samaritaine was magical.

Paris Samaritaine and us

Again, I have written before, but found a new photo so will give new text as well to revive this great memory,and stay tune, it will be back!!! The Samaritaine forever!!

The grand magasin or great department store Samaritaine will see light again. This is a wonderful Paris landmark that will come back as a store we can all visit again. La Samaritaine was still a department store located between rue de Rivoli and the Seine river, at Pont Neuf in the 1éme arrondissement or district of Paris. Simply the best!

A bit of history I like

La Samaritaine was the largest Parisian department store in terms of its size, with its four stores totaling a sales area of 48,000 m2. Its buildings in art nouveau and art deco style. La Samaritaine becomes the most important Parisian department store in terms of sales area just ahead of Galeries Lafayette and Printemps Its advertising slogan, supported by a major advertising campaign in the 1960s has remained in the collective memory : “You can find everything at La Samaritaine”.

Paris samaritaine dept store old feb11

La Samaritaine was founded in 1870 by Ernest Cognacq. After having exercised various trades of salesman for a boss or for his own account, Cognacq had become calico in a tent or a red umbrella on the Pont Neuf when he got along with a small café which he frequented rue de La Monnaie to rent, from March 21, 1870, its little-used annex room and turn it into a small novelty store, La Samaritaine. Ernest Cognacq married in January 1872 Marie-Louise Jaÿ, former first saleswoman in the confectionery department of Bon Marché dept store, with whom he will then manage the store. You can see their museum at 8 rue Elzévir Paris 3.

La Samaritaine was the name of a water pump located on the Pont Neuf, the existence of which dates back to Henri IV, who asked the Flemish Jean Lintlaër for the plans. It was the first water lifting machine built in Paris. It was rebuilt by Robert de Cotte between 1712 and 1719, then renovated by Soufflot and Gabriel. This pomp was decorated with a representation of the episode evoking the meeting of Jesus and the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well (recounted in the Gospel according to John). The whole was surmounted by a clock fitted with a jacquemart, then, later, a carillon.

La Samaritaine opened in 1870 on the ground floor of a building located in the block which would become store 1. From the early 1880s, all of the buildings located between rue de la Monnaie and rue du Pont-Neuf and rue de Rivoli were bought, which in 1904 led to the creation of a large store 1, whose interior distribution had been completely revised without the appearance of the facades having been profoundly changed. At the same time as the development of store 1, apartment buildings were acquired in the block located on the other side of rue de la Monnaie, which will constitute store 2. A passage under the rue de la Monnaie was created to communicate the basements of stores 1 and 2.

The extension of the Samaritaine continues with the acquisition of the buildings located between the rue de Rivoli and the rue Boucher then their reconstruction in 1930 to constitute the store 3. The expansion de la Samaritaine continued in 1932 with the purchase of the Révillon Frères fur workshops occupying almost the entire block north of store 2, on the other side of rue Baillet. These buildings will constitute store 4, which will not however occupy the entire block, for lack of being able to acquire the buildings belonging to other owners. The transformation of the facades of store 4 overlooking rue de Rivoli in the Art Deco style was planned but did not see the light of day due to the economic crisis of the 1930s.

In 2001, the La Samaritaine is sold after which had become a loss-making, affair to the LVMH group. The department store finally closed its doors in 2005, (photo below just before closing from the rooftop!!) officially due to the building’s non compliance with modern safety standards, and redevelopment. The Samaritaine department store, which LVMH was to open in early April, 2021 after fifteen years of work and an investment of 750 million euros, is now only due to open in Summer of 2021, due to complications of the covid19 virus. The postponement of this inauguration represents a hard blow for the district. The merchants of the rue de Rivoli hoped that frequentation of the Samaritaine would revive activity at half mast since the launch of its titanic construction site and revalue its business assets. Below ,photo from the roofstop of the Samaritaine in the glory days!

Paris samaritaine dept stor top to sacre coeur , eiffel and the seine oct05

The complex will be backed by a 72-room palace operated under the Hôtel Cheval Blanc brand, another subsidiary of the LVMH group, the Samaritaine must establish itself as the shopping destination for visitors to Paris. More than 600 brands will be distributed there, most of them from LVMH, the parent company of Louis Vuitton and Celine. The basement is devoted to cosmetic brands, a guilty pleasure for tourists when shopping in the capital.

The official webpage is by the management group DFS part of LVMH here: https://www.dfs.com/en/samaritaine

The LVHM webpage on the Samaritaine in English: https://www.lvmh.com/houses/other-activities/samaritaine/

So,therefore, we need to wait a bit longer! Can’t wait really, will not be the first time that I go to Paris for a grand opening, and this one will be another one for sure. La Samaritaine brings lots of good memories, happier time, family time, and fun shopping. All will be relive again I hope. Hope you like the post as I do.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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2 Comments to “Paris and Samaritaine!!!”

  1. Wasn’t it the shop advertising a white elephant in Africa to illustrate that you could find everything you wanted in the shop? Do not embarrass the associates with stupid requests because they will be able to satisfy them.

    Liked by 1 person

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