Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Hôtel de Sully in the Marais Paris, France.

The Hôtel de Sully is a hôtel particulier, or private mansion, in the Louis XIII style, located in the Le Marais, IV arondissement, Paris. It is located at 62 rue Saint-Antoine. Twin sphinxes face each other at the foot of the staircase leading out of the courtyard.

The financier Mesme Gallet built the hôtel, with gardens and an orangery, between 1625 and 1630. The building was designed by the architect Jean Androuet du Cerceau. The site was chosen to give access to the Place Royale - today the Place des Vosges - and was located in the Marais, at the time a fashionable district of Paris.

Detail of the decoration

Maximilien de Béthune, duc de Sully, former Superintendent of Finances to King Henri IV, purchased it on 23 February 1634. He completed the decoration of the hôtel, and spent his last years living there. His grandson Maximilien commissioned the architect François Le Vau, son of Louis Le Vau, to build an additional wing in 1660, to the west of the garden. The Hôtel de Sully still bears the name of this family, who owned the building into the 18th century.

he cobblestone-paved front courtyard features a celebrated series of sculptures representing the four elements and the two seasons. 

The hôtel then passed through the hands of various owners, becoming an investment property in the 19th century. Various additions and alterations were made, to accommodate trades, craftsmen and other tenants. In 1862 it was classified as a monument historique, and new owners, more concerned with conservation, gradually restored the building. It became a state-owned property in 1944. A long restoration programme was then undertaken, which was completed with the repair of the Orangery in 1973.

Since 1967 it has been the home of the Caisse nationale des monuments historiques et des sites, which in 2000 became the Centre des monuments nationaux. This public body, under the supervision of the Ministry of Culture and Communication, is responsible for the management of historic buildings and monuments in state care.

On the left there is the presence of a fox wall, blind arches.

Hôtel de Sully, Garden and Orangerie

Detail of the decoration

Hôtel de Sully, Garden and Orangerie

Through the central portal, go to the side garden. And what a garden! 
Admire the façade of this side vested in abundance and pleasure, therefore bringing the statues of beautiful seasons. On the left there is the presence of a fox wall, blind arches. A right wing was built at right angles to the second Duchesse de Sully, Charlotte Seguier by François Le Vau, in the late seventeenth century.

 architectural sculpture in the garden of the Hôtel de Sully

The Air and Fire adorn the left side, while Earth and Water are right. These high reliefs reminiscent of Carnavalet, attributed to Jean Goujon, made ​​about a century before ... The floating a little style, the position of imbalance are a nod to mannerism. The abundant decoration, many masks, foliage and stone lingeries are in the baroque tone. However, the regularity and symmetry of the building are all classics. This hotel is therefore at the edge of the baroque and classical records.

Hôtel de Sully, Garden and Orangerie


  1. The symmetry of the building was indeed classical... perfect, given the fact that the Marais was a very cool part of Paris in 1630. And I am rapt that the original owner's grandson commissioned the architect son of Louis Le Vau, to build an additional wing in 1660. Continuity is everything!

    But why would this extravaganza be built to give access to the Place Royale/Place des Vosges? Why not just clear a road, if access was all that was wanted?

  2. The land backed up to the Place Royale now called Place des Vosges. Where other rich people lived. Rich people love to be surrounded by other rich people.