Paris, Champs Elysées 68. The Maison Guerlain is a grand architectural masterpiece located on one of the worlds most famous avenues. For more than 100 years, this has been the home to Guerlain and the boutique is still attracting an enormous amount of visitors every year. In 2013, the house has been renovated by star architect Peter Marino, who kept the many magnificent historic elements and combined them with the works of 20 contemporary artists to decorate the interior in a modern, timeless way. The result is a stunning combination of art, design and history.
A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to participate in a tour of the renovated Maison Guerlain and today I want to share my impressions with you.
On the lower floor you can find Le 68 Guy Martin, a small palace for gourmets. Guy Martin, who has been decorated with three Michelin Stars, works with Guerlain’s perfumer Thierry Wasser to create a fine selection of delicacies.
Inspired by the fabulous world of Guerlain’s fragrances, you will also find an exclusive selection of perfumed teas, like the Thé Guerlain Shalimar or the Thé Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire
Not only do Guerlain’s candles look beautiful, but they also have a pleasant and gentle scent and make an ideal gift.
Throughout the house you find a lot of art and selected decorative pieces that reflect the long history of Guerlain.
The centerpiece of the Maison is the redesigned sales and consulting space for cosmetics and perfumes, which is located on the ground floor. Entering from the Champs Elysées, the visitor finds himself below a seven meter high installation of golden bees (left image), which have been the hallmark of the house since 1853.
You will find exclusive perfume creations which are only available in the Maison Champs Elysées.
A dream for every lover of cosmetics and maybe the largest selection of lipsticks I have ever seen in my life.
The mezzanine floor offers consulting around care, decorative cosmetics and perfume.
In the pictures above you can get an idea of the so-called “perfume organ,” a work of art designed by Peter Marino. Alluding to an opening, blooming flower, the most beautiful perfume creations of the house are presented like a fairy tale.
However, the first floor has far more to offer, being the home of the world-famous custom-made perfume creations. The development of an individual fragrance that is perfectly matched to a customer takes place over a period of approximately one year. In this highly complicated process both the customer and the perfume experts Sylvaine Delacourte and Thierry Wasser are involved; the prices for these creations start at around €40,000.
In addition to the private collection of Sylvie Guerlain, which showcases valuable pieces from the early days of the house (top photo), it is possible to purchase selected accessories made of leather and silk, whose materials exude the elegant scent of perfumes like Shalimar or La Petite Robe Noire.
The spa on the second floor is an impressive and stunning oasis. A calming silence and the beautiful decorative art ensure that the visitor of the “Institut Guerlain” can shake off the stress of the outside world completely.
The Institute only offers a holistic treatment (and, if necessary, medical consultation). Thus, the program is conducted customized according to the needs of body, skin and soul.
The orchid garden of artist Laurence Guillon adorns the large and strong windows to the Champs Elysées, which keep out all sound of the noisy parisian traffic. A treatment lasts around 90 minutes and prices start at €400.
Conclusion: The Maison Guerlain in its entirety is a small palace of many treasures that I find very rare. Modernity meets history, functionality combines with design and beauty – a concept that not only runs through the Parisian boutique, but also through the history of the french maison. In the house of Guerlain, fans of cosmetics can be enchanted the same way as art and history lovers.