I recently went to Paris and visited the historical place know as the Piscine Lutetia (Lutetia pool) now a luxury Hermès shop. It's absolutely stunning, I love how it has been restored- much like an antique its been given a new lease of life and a new purpose. We often get bogged down by change and although this place would be an amazing pool again- it is a really fantastic homage to it and Hermès seems the most fitting shop to occupy this stunning space.
The Piscine Lutetia was a 1935 landmark building with an Art Deco swimming pool in Paris which opened in 1936. The Hermès Rive Gauche store which now occupies it is located on rue de Sèvres (no 17) and has been open since 2010.
The pool space has been renovated with 3 swooping, 9m tall teepee-shaped structures in ash wood. There is an amazing staircase with a tactile ramp that mirrors the teepees. The renovation was designed by French architects RDAI. There are lots of nods to its previous use including a mini display pool in one of the structures. The teepees have clever shelving which make for interesting and extremely versatile displays.
The store is a clever combination of modern design mixed with the historic charm of the former swimming pool building. The mosaics and the lovely railings and pillars are all original. On the first floor there would have been the "cabines" changing rooms"and there was also two hamams and a fitness room. Now beautiful frescos by artist Matthieu Cossé adorn the walls. It's the adventures of the god Hermes depicted in a Chagal-esque 120 m long paper friese. You could spend hours looking at the details.
The Lutetia Swimming Pool is was listed as a Historic Monument in 2005. the pool closed in the 70's, can you imagine how wonderful it must have been to swim there?