Maxime d’Angeac architecte
XIX century building, historical monument
After winning the LVMH competition, the project consisted of creating a heritage building that would rejuvenate the image of Guerlain, the sleeping beauty of the perfume world. The plan was to create 3 commercial floors in a building that was not built for that purpose: a tiny historic store on the Champs Élysées, upstairs an office area and, on the 2nd floor, a magnificently ageing Spa, created by Jean-Michel Franck at the dawn of the Second World War. All of which was protected by the Ministry of Culture and superbly ignored.
Major structural work has let light in and created general proportions; since all the decorative elements are protected much skill and cultural knowledge was required in order to create here a staircase, there to restore one or make it turn in another direction, here take a vintage wood item and move it inch by inch 30 metres away in the building. Then there was the restoration of listed heritage pieces whilst hiding the modern techniques used. Partnership with André Putnam was essential during the renovation work and enabled the interior architect to work on the purely commercial section and some of the Spa furnishings. We worked closely with Pierre Mesguich on the newly created areas and on the restored areas to be preserved. As usual, limiting the time taken on the work and remaining within budget were major features of the project.