Sixteen years ago, the La Samaritaine was closed due to safety reasons after the building had stood empty for some time. This week, LVMH, the luxury goods group, owners of various labels, including Louis Vuitton, opened the structure again.
French President, Emmanuel Macron, said that the building is a "wonderful French treasure".
The refurbished version of the La Samaritaine will feature more than 12 eateries, luxury brand shops and a hotel.
The owners hope that the building will become a destination that tourists will spend their money at. Its location will certainly assist with that aspect. Set on the Right Bank of Paris, across the oldest stone bridge in Pont Neuf, sits the La Samaritaine.
The heritage building holds prime real estate along the Seine. The Louvre Museum is a short five-minute walk away to the west, while the Notre Dame Cathedral within walking distance to the east. Macron recently opened contemporary art museum, Bourse de Commerce-Pinault Collection, five minutes north, reports CNN.
The building will also house a five-star hotel with its own four restaurants and an exclusive Dior spa. The hotel will only open in September, but all 72 rooms and suites will overlook the Seine River.
With the world still in a pandemic and millions who have lost their jobs, the opening of this luxury building is somewhat controversial. Many have accused the LVMH group of being insensitive towards current circumstances.
Image credit: Arch Daily