The former Jacobin convent of Rennes !

Well, had this monument mix with another post and felled should have a post of its own, Therefore, here is my take on the old Jacobin convent , now Convention center. Rennes is in the Ille et Vilaine dept 35 of my lovely region of Bretagne. Hope you enjoy this post as I.  Always lovely to visit the capital and historical capital of Bretagne , This is an unique historical building often overlook for that as it is today the Convention center of Rennes! The Jacobins convent has gone thru a wonderful transformation to preserve it.

The Jacobins convent, also named old convent of Bonne-Nouvelle  , is an old religious building and an old barracks, located in Rue Saint Malo and Place Sainte Anne. It includes an abbey, a cloister and conventual buildings. In 2018, the building became the  Convention Center of Rennes Métropole.  It is exactly on Place Sainte-Anne, along the rue d’échange and Rue Saint-Malo . The latter separates the Jacobins convent from the Basilica of Notre-Dame-de-Bonne-Nouvelle (see post).  The Convention Center is composed of a large François Regis Hutin auditorium, with 1000 seats; an auditorium with 500 seats; a 300-seat auditorium in the old church area ; 25 committee rooms; and 3,000 m2 of exhibition or restoration space, specially around the cloister. In the process the Convent is save! The new Convention Center is inaugurated on January 10, 2018 by a concert given by the Symphonic Orchestra of Brittany/Bretagne in the large auditorium.


The old building is built in the classic way for a convent: a cloister consisting of a central garden surrounded by a gallery. This cloister provides access to several rooms used for monastic life: convent church , chapter house , refectory , etc. Less common is the presence of a chapel of Bonne-Nouvelle in the corner of the cloister garden as well as a gallery of the crypts in the cloister alongside the church. Two courtyards line the main building. These are closed by a gate each. Next to it is the prior’s dwelling dating from the 16C.


The research allows experts to find under the convent the expected trace of the intersection of the cardo maximus, main street of Condate (Roman name for Rennes), and another important artery. At this intersection is erected a monument, an aedicule or a statue, which will become, three centuries later, a temple. Traces of buildings from three different periods are found, as well as everyday objects. A sword is also found on the spot, confirming the martial quality of the city. The renewal of the site began in the 14C when the Dominican order decided to install a convent on the site with the help of the founder is the Duke Jean IV (John) who laid the foundation stone. In this place are celebrated the engagement of Anne of Brittany and Charles VIII in 1491. There is a painting of the  Notre-Dame-de-Bonne-Nouvelle of the 14C depicting the Virgin that made the convent a place of pilgrimage and preaching. It is today preserved in the Basilica Notre-Dame-de-Bonne-Nouvelle. The convent then declines, until its end at the French revolution. Some brothers refuse to take an oath of the new revolutionary French constitution, while others found a priest position in Rennes. In 1793, the building was assigned to the army, which turned it into a barracks, and then housed the sports club of the garrison of Rennes. 

rennes basilica Notre Dame de Bonne Nouvelle from rue st malo sept19

The official Convention Center of Rennes :

The City of Rennes on the Convention Center :

The Rennes tourist office on the Convention Center :

There you go folks, ,one simple trip to Rennes and gems are found, we have more , a lot more , stay tune in m lovely Bretagne ,and my belle France, Hope you enjoy the monument in a great location for walks, this is the old Jacobins convent now the Convention Center of Rennes !

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

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