Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Galleries Lafayette -A Parisian Institution

Most tourists who come to Paris have visited at least once the supreme Parisian department store --Les Galleries Lafayette.  Each year some 25 million visitors visit this temple dedicated to Parisian luxury.

Just before the turn of the 20th century (1893), two cousins from Alsace , Theophile Bader and Alphonse Kahn, opened a  haberdashery store at the corner of rue La Fayette and rue de la Chaussee d'Antin.  The store benefitted from an ideal location, in proximity of the Opera House and the busy St. Lazare rail station.  In 1903, as the result of the initial success of the store, the cousins undertook an extension of retail space  by buying adjacent buildings along the Boulevard Haussman and rue de la Chaussee d'Antin.

In 1912, the store as we know it today, was constructed by architect Ferdinant Chanut and its interior was designed in the style of Art Nouveau with as its landmark the Byzantine-like central colored glass cupola.

Every year, for the holidays, the main hall under the magnificent cupola is lavishly decorated with a Christmas tree and this year it is with an upside down one.

Happy Holidays!!

For a Parisian Christmas holiday visit  www.enchanted-france.com

#Paris, # Galleries Lafayette, # Paris Christmas

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