Chaumet reopens the doors of its legendary mansion

For lovers of Paris, for lovers of fine jewelry, for admirers of Place Vendôme.
Reading time 3 minutes

Chaumet has 240 years of uninterrupted history, dazzling archives, most of them have been miraculously preserved. Marie-Etienne Nitot, the founder of the house - who had apprenticed as the jeweler of Queen Marie-Antoinette, received in 1805 her prestigious customers in private salon located in the Hotel de Gramont, that is to say the place where the Ritz hotel was founded a few decades later.

Benoit Verhulle, who watches over a cohort of craftsmen, jewelers, polishers and apprentices, masterfully embodies the 13th generation of the House, which now has a new location - the Place Vendôme.

It took 12 months for the total renovation of the mansion. For Jean Marc Mansvelt, who has presided Chaumet since 2015, it is much more than a facelift which is offered to the visitor, but a total overhaul of the place. This ambitious project was designed over the long term, with a desire to exalt the essence and the singularity of the Place Vendôme while galvanizing the extraordinary heritage of a house born under the old regime.

The store on the ground floor does not seek to impress at all costs with unreasonable pomp. It is rather the impression of comfort, elegance and warmth, that predominates even if each square centimeter of the place, conceals luxurious and symbolic details. Wheat ears, the central motif of the house, thrive on wall hangings, walnut paneling, mineral walls, embroidered, engraved or gilded with fine gold. Here and there, some references to Napoleon.

The ballad is gaining in intensity on the mezzanine floor which hosts several opulent and intimate salons: the jewels salon is dedicated to special orders and presentations of fine jewelry pieces. On the walls, a dazzling straw marquetry, of natural color or tinted in Chaumet blue proves the extent of the works which animated the hotel these last months. Composed of radiant beams, this spectacular coating was produced by the Jallu Straw workshop.

The Salon Malmaison has a large fitting room. On the ground, the weaving of the carpet evokes the garden of the Empress Josephine. The bridal whiteness of the decor clearly indicates the vocation of the show: the engagement. The golden halo of the ceiling imitates the rippling of water.

Another very pleasant surprise: the return of the Arcade. It was in 1970, a unique space with the air of a contemporary art gallery, dedicated to graphic creations. The house has resurrected this entity, exactly at its original location. The furniture displays a tender seventies look, without excess but with a lot of character. We will come here to look for personalized or declining pieces - medals, watches - as desired.

The famous big salon also contain admirable novelties. First of all, the admirable Pearl Fair, which until now had been completely untapped by the House. The Napoleon III period woodwork has been restored, as well as the scene painted on the ceiling by Pierre-Victor Galland, nephew of Jean-Baptiste Fossin, who had succeeded Marie-Etienne Nitot. Woodwork and painting light up the midnight blue tones that dominate this truly imperial-looking living room with a delicate touch of light. A long table indicates that the place will certainly serve as a reception place for a handful of privileged people.

Finally, the absolute treasure of Place Vendôme, The Grand Salon, which overall harmony was imagined in 1779, has been scrupulously preserved. It must be said that this sumptuous living room, with its woodwork carved by the Rousseau brothers and paintings by Lagrenée Le Jeune is classified as a historic monument since 1927. A Pleyel piano from 1920, by its presence, recalls that it is where the illustrious musician composed his last mazurka in 1849.

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