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Top 10 des villes françaises qui ont du style

Place de la Bourse, Bordeaux

Top 10 French cities with style

Published April 10, 2014, in France

Some cities have remained victims of fashion of their time. Today they are the guarantors of the architecture that made them. Their visit is a real history lesson and urbanism. We love their look or hate him … here are the 10 French cities are not forgotten after they have visited.

1. St. Quentin and Art Deco (Aisne)

Largely destroyed during World War II, the city of Saint-Quentin , in Haute Picardie, was rebuilt in the early 1920s in a style Art Deco . Today it brings together a set of 3000 buildings that are connected to this style. A heritage not valued until recently, when the municipality conducted an active restoration policy. Besides the station, the school of music or film Le Carillon, the streets of Lyon or the Sub-Prefecture offer fine examples of listed buildings.

The tourist office offers a thematic guided tour (www.saint-quentin-tourisme.fr) And the municipality website lists the Art Deco buildings the most interesting (www.ville-saintquentin.fr). 

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Art Deco, Saint-Quentin image: http://www.lonelyplanet.fr/sites/all/themes/zen/lonelyplanet/images/creative-commons.png

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Classified as  World Heritage of Unesco , the magnificent buildings of the center of  Bordeaux  keep the grandiose imprint of  the Enlightenment . At the time became the first French colonial port, the city emerged from its walls, turned to the Garonne and saw rising hundreds of mansions along straight avenues. Today, docks to the famous »  Golden Triangle  «, one can observe the architectural evolution of this period. Built under Louis XV,  the Place de la Bourse , with its rock, its gargoyles and wrought iron balconies, shows a flowery rococo, while the  Grand Theatre , completed in 1780 and neoclassical announces already the Napoleonic architecture its ancient columns.

To extend this dive in history, head to the Museum of Decorative Arts (39 rue Bouffard, May 56 October 14 00), set within the beautiful Lalande hotel, built in 1779 and rich in furniture XVIIIth  century.


The city of  Havre  is inseparable from the name of Auguste Perret . The architect, poet of reinforced concrete, was indeed the architect of the reconstruction of the  first port of France , destroyed 80% by the Italian bombing of 1940 and 1944. British Perret designed an orthogonal town plan, rational imposing and airy; if the rejection of ornament may seem austere, it should not overshadow the refusal Perret build skyscrapers in order to leave the city with a human dimension and scope to the sea. A modern urban experience, designed in continuity and intelligence, and unique in France, which earned him to enter the  UNESCO list  in 2005.

The Epic Continues: Odyssey 21, designed by Jean Nouvel, is to equip the renovated docks of Le Havre for an ambitious center of the sea and sustainable development.

image: http://www.lonelyplanet.fr/sites/default/files/lehavre.jpg

Architecture in Le Havre

4. Les Arcs, an architect’s vision (Savoie)

When, in 1960, we decided to build from scratch ski resorts to support the development of winter sports, the town of Bourg-Saint-Maurice had the brilliant idea to ask an architect and talented designer, Charlotte Perriand . During twenty years, it supervises projects Arcs 1600 and 1800 , and marked the its mark: Planning functionality (pedestrian stations) and housing (optimization of residential spaces), interior harmony / outside (large bay windows and balconies), use prefabricated (bathrooms molded polyester) … above all, this original Tarp, loving mountain and Japanese culture, took care to incorporate environmental constructions , making them marry slope and adorning the local materials (larch, slate …). The residence La Cascade (Les Arcs 1600) constitutes one of the finest examples.

The tourist office organizes summer free tours of the station (www.lesarcs.com).

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Architecture Arcs by Charlotte Perriand.

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5. Bastide country (Dordogne)

Today, Monpazier , Beaumont , Eymet or Domme , small villages »  quaint  » with their two or three parallel streets, their square surrounded by arcaded houses, their church and their fortified city walls, the charm of the black Perigord . theXIIIth century, it is a different story. These «new towns» were the ultimate. In a hundred years (1250-1350), 300-500 bastidas were founded in a precise architectural plan to establish populations in one place, create trade (fairs and markets) and, for kings, to mark their territory. With their preserved architecture and their markets, houses are now traveling in time.

the site www.pays-des-bastides.com brings together nine Tourist Offices of the Dordogne, including those of the prettiest houses.

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The village of Monpazier in the land of country houses (instead of arcades)

6. Nancy and Art Nouveau (Meurthe-et-Moselle)

If Nancy symbolizes the new Art is that she was born this artistic movement from the beginning ofXIXth century. It is indeed in the city Lorraine Emile Gallé, Louis Majorelle, Jacques Gruber or the Daum brothers participated together in the revival of the decorative arts and the creation of the Nancy School in 1901. The Art Nouveau touches fields as diverse as architecture, furniture, glassware and lighting and is inspired by the fauna and local flora through different materials (glass, wood, ceramics, wrought iron, etc.).

If the 1900 architecture is very present today in Nancy, the tourist nevertheless offers 4 themed itineraries to discover the Art Nouveau buildings in the city (www.ot-nancy.fr).

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Detail & # 039; a door, Nancy

7. Collonge-la-Rouge, Renaissance city (Corrèze)

During the Renaissance, the nobliaux the corner came to take their summer quarters in this village of red sandstone topped with roofs of blue slate. This stage in the foothills of the Habitarelle , which gave it its color. You will see fancy castles flanked turrets and pepper shakers, a priory, the halls ofXVIth century church and shared in two to accommodate papists and heretics. It is accessed by wooded roads chestnut and straw wine is famous. But Collonge-la-Rouge , the »  ruby bottom Limousin  » as proudly announce the tourist brochures, shines in all its glory in the fall, when the light becomes fruity and walkers, more rare.

From mid-July to mid-August, on the Place du Lavoir, stands the Theatre Festival, the classical repertoire.

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Village of Collonge-la-Rouge

8. Le Vieux Lyon (Rhone)

During the Renaissance, the golden age of the city, old Lyon inherited an architecture that is found in the palaces of Florence. An Italian perfume emanates from its colorful facades ocher, gold and pink . The many mansions of the great families of bankers and Italian traders attracted by the radiation Lyon remained intact sinceXVth century: Philibert Delorme gallery of Jewry Street, the hotel Gadagne current museum of the history of the city, home of the Lawyers street Bombard, or the pink tower rue du Boeuf.

In April, a festival recreates the atmosphere of the Renaissance district. It takes place before the Primatial St. John, where people dress up for the occasion.

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Lyon during the Festival of Lights.

9. Troyes, steeped in history (Aube)

With Reims , Troyes is the historic capital of Champagne. Take the alley cats, dark and very narrow, which takes you into the Middle Ages . The old town has a remarkable range of medieval buildings and Renaissance lined with wonderful timbered houses, colorful, dating mostly from theXVIth century. Mansions, such as Mauroy, also witnessed the Trojan architectureXVIth century. The wealth of the city is its last dozen listed churches, which have beautiful stained glass windows.

The Museum of Modern Art has a beautiful French art collection, including works by Fauves.

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Troyes, medieval city

10. Rochefort, new city XVIIth century (Charente-Maritime)

Impossible to get lost in Rochefort , in any military scheduling, and built in checkerboard around the place Colbert and its tidal clock. His door of the Sun gives access to the Dockyard, a waterfront meander of the Charente . Contemporary gardens will surround the splendid royal rope and dry docks. One can visit the construction site of a replica of Hermione , who lives frigate embark Lafayette during the American Revolution. The city itself is home to remarkable places, including the Cup Golden Theatre and the Museum of Art and History Hebrus of St. Clement.

Visit the School of Naval Medicine (combined ticket with the Navy National Museum): the place is fascinating, worthy of a horror movie. Special mention for the panels artériologie and surgical coffersXIXth century. Not recommended for children.


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