Résumé

Le Printemps is one of Paris's most iconic department stores, but it wasn't the first. Aristide Boucicaut opened Le Bon Marché in 1852, on the left bank of the Seine, followed by Au Printemps in 1865 and Galeries Lafayette in 1894. In the early days, Jules Jaluzot, with the help of his wife Augustine Figeac, opened Au Printemps with Jean-Alfred Duclos. The store met with initial success with the exclusive sale of a black silk, "Marie-Blanche". In 1866, Au Printemps launched seasonal sales, revolutionizing the business. Despite a devastating fire in 1881, the store was rebuilt and expanded, introducing architectural and technical innovations. Over the decades, Le Printemps continued to prosper, expanding into other cities and developing renowned fashion brands. In 2006, the PPR group sold Le Printemps to RREEF, and since 2013, the DISA fund, owned by Qatari investors, has held the majority stake. Despite controversies and management changes, Le Printemps remains a major retail player in France, with a significant online and in-store presence.

Localisation
Open hours

Regular opening hours

  • Monday - 10:00-20:30
  • Tuesday - 10:00-20:30
  • Wednesday - 10:00-20:30
  • Thursday - 10:00-20:30
  • Friday - 10:00-20:30
  • Saturday - 10:00-20:30
  • Sunday - 11:00-18:00

Exceptional openings times

  • Wednesday, December 20, 2023 - 10:00 - 20:30
  • Thursday, December 21, 2023 - 10:00 - 20:30
  • Friday December 22, 2023 - 10:00 - 20:30
  • Saturday December 23rd 2023 - 10:00 - 20:30
  • Sunday December 24th 2023 - 11:00 - 18:00
  • Monday December 25, 2023 - Closed
  • Sunday december 31, 2023 - 11:00 - 18:00
  • Monday, January 1, 2024 - Closed
Access

Printemps Haussmann
64 Boulevard Haussmann
75009 PARIS

  • Métro : Opéra (lignes 3, 7 et 8), Chaussée d’Antin (lignes 7 et 9) et Havre Caumartin (lignes 3 et 9)
  • RER : ligne A (Station Auber )
  • Bus : 22, 42, 53, 66, 68, 81
  • Parkings : Haussmann Berri, Haussmann Galeries
Address

Printemps Haussmann
64 Boulevard Haussmann
75009 PARIS
Tél : 33 (0) 1 42 82 50 00
http://www.printemps.com/magasins/paris-haussmann

Coordinates Latitude Longitude
Sexagesimal (°, ', ") 48° 52′ 19″ N 2° 19′ 55″ E
Degré décimal (GPS) 48.87395 2.32791
Description complète

Le Printemps department store wasn't the first. In fact, it was Aristide Boucicaut, the "father" of today's department stores, who opened Le Bon Marché in 1852 on the other side of the Seine (on the Left Bank), and it's still a very active department store today. So it was "only" on May 11, 1865, that Jules Jaluzot and Jean-Alfred Duclos created Au Printemps, followed in 1894 by Galeries Lafayette.

Jules Jaluzot and Augustine Figeac's modest but remarkable start at Au Printemps

In early 1864, Jaluzot went to work at Le Bon Marché to learn the trade. Among his customers, he met Augustine Figeac, a star and member of the Comédie-Française. He married her on February 17, 1864. The bride brought a considerable dowry of 300,000 francs. Jules Jaluzot contributed a more modest 60,300 gold francs. Thanks to his wife's dowry, he could now, at the age of 30, build on his experience to open his own business, the Au Printemps store, in partnership with Jean-Alfred Duclos.

Jules Jaluzot and Jean-Alfred Duclos set up shop in 3 floors at the crossroads of boulevard Haussmann (right bank) and rue du Havre. This was a long way from the lively heart of Paris at the time, but close to the Gare Saint Lazare station - and la few years later close to the Opéra Garnier.

That same year, Printemps achieved its first major success, with the exclusive marketing of a black silk, "Marie-Blanche", which was widely popular with customers until the 1900s.

Then, in 1866, Printemps innovated and launched the principle of sales as we know them today: rather than camouflaging out-of-fashion or faded products, they would be sold at knock-down prices every year, at clearly defined periods. This principle appeals to the masses, even though the economic recession is spreading.
Finally, following a dispute, or a failure to comply with capital contribution clauses, Jules Jaluzot bought out Jean-Alfred Duclos's shares by deed dated June 4, 1866.

Success after success at Le Printemps department store

In July 1870, with war declared, a large majority of Printemps' 250 employees were forced to join the Garde Nationale. However, stocks held in reserve enabled the store to resume business immediately in 1873.
In April 1874, Printemps Haussmann expanded with two new floors and two houses on rue de Provence, linked by iron bridges, and the addition of two elevators, new for the time (La joie des enfants). The department store gradually absorbed the neighboring buildings. By 1881, it had a fourth façade on rue de Caumartin.

Le Printemps department store disappears in the fire of March 9, 1881

On March 9, 1881, a fire broke out when a sweeping employee lit a gas burner to work, suddenly setting fire to a muslin curtain and ravaging the store. A little later, the fire melted two gas pipes, causing explosions and adding new fires. The building eventually collapsed, completely destroying the Printemps department store buildings, except for those on Rue Caumartin.
But by early 1882, architect Paul Sédille was already erecting the structures for the new building, which was completed in 1883, including the installation of electricity.

A disaster becomes an opportunity

The burnt-out section was rebuilt, and the old buildings demolished, to ensure the harmony and modernity of the new building.
In 1904, the Printemps was accessible by line no. 3 of the metro.
Among the architectural and technical innovations was a layout ensuring a functional space, still recognized today by art and architecture historians as the prototype of the modern department store and industrial building. In addition, the use of iron as a visible decorative element, rather than as the sole reinforcement of the building, was introduced, along with brand-new, safer lighting.
In 1905, to enhance the presentation of items for sale by displaying them to the public, the basement was enlarged, and a large central staircase with four decorative revolutions, symbolizing ascent, was installed in the main hall.
In 1906, Printemps was equipped with a telephone.

New flight from 1907 for the department store

In 1907, Le Printemps constructed a new building, which by 1908 had already opened several of its new galleries on the corner of Rue Caumartin and Rue de Provence. It is connected to the older store by an underground passage.
April 1910 saw the inauguration of what became known as Les Nouveaux Magasins. At the time, they occupied about half the floor space of today's Printemps Haussmann stores.
The style of the new building, topped by a cupola and terrace, was similar enough to that of the store built by Paul Sédille to preserve a certain homogeneity. But once again, the architectural innovations did not go unnoticed: the new octagonal hall was perceived as daring, the ironwork on the balconies and staircase railings was in the Art Nouveau style, the lighting of the new building was astonishing, and the three new high-speed elevators amazed visitors.
In 1912, with the birth of the arts nouveaux and then the decorative arts, Printemps began offering catalogs of furniture and tableware: this was the Primavera art workshop, whose pieces were made in two Montreuil workshops.
The first mannequins arrive in Printemps windows during the First World War. Specially created for Printemps, their original style set them apart from mass-produced mannequins. During the war, Printemps' window displays became a strolling destination for Parisians with little else to do.

Again a new fire on September 28, 1921 for Le Printemps department store

On September 28, 1921, another fire in the Nouveau Magasin had disastrous consequences. Very few parts of the facades and roof structures were spared.
Architect Georges Wybo directs the reconstruction work, based on the same plans as before the fire. This time, however, Wybo used new, safer building techniques (notably Grinnell's automatic sprinkler system) to keep the store free of devastating fires for good.
In 1923, a second metro line (no. 9) serving the Havre-Caumartin station opened directly into the Printemps building.

Le Printemps department store: one event follows another

That same year, in 1923, the great master glassmaker Brière installed a stained-glass dome in the store on boulevard Haussmann.
From 1924 onwards, Printemps Haussmann began to organize exhibitions and events within its buildings. For example, an exhibition is held every January to mark the white season.
Since its reconstruction, the Printemps store on boulevard Haussmann has also given priority to displays and windows that represent fashion. These are true works of art that bring in the whole of Paris.
It was also at this time that the concept of animated Christmas window displays was created, attracting crowds that were all the greater for the fact that television was not yet available in the home.
The Printemps stores did not stop there. In 1930, the first escalators took over the upper floors of the buildings, improving access and aisle traffic.

By the 50s and 60s, Le Printemps had 23 department stores throughout France and 13 Prisunic stores. Le Printemps Haussmann, also known as the "flagship", spread over three buildings.
Branches were also opened in atypical locations such as Orly airport, the ocean liner France and, from 1964, on the outskirts and in shopping malls (such as Nation, Parly 2 and Vélizy 2).

Fashion at Le Printemps department store

In the 1930s, Printemps launched the Brummel men's label.
In 1933, fashion designer Paul Poiret shows his collection at Printemps.
In 1962, Pierre Cardin created a special collection for Printemps.
In 1978, the "Rue de la Mode" was created.
In 1998, Christian Lacroix designed wedding dresses for the store.
In 1999, Internet-connected sales assistants make their appearance at Printemps.

Le Printemps brands

In 2000, the neighboring Citadium building was inaugurated. Citadium is the Printemps group's urban fashion brand, "the reference store for 15-25 year-olds, offering the best in fashion, sneakers, accessories and gadgets, with over 250 emblematic and emerging brands. More than just a store, it's a unique concept, a place for living, sharing and discovering, which vibrates to the rhythm of artistic and musical happenings. Today, Printemps boasts a total of 9 stores in addition to its Rue Caumartin location, plus an e-shop.

In 2001, Printemps devoted an entire floor to luxury: Printemps du Luxe, featuring high jewelry.
In 2003, it inaugurates the world's largest "beauty space".
In 2006, a 3,000 m² floor is entirely dedicated to women's footwear.
2011 sees the creation of La Belle Parfumerie. A "food hall", entirely dedicated to luxury groceries and gastronomy, is also installed.

The Great Dome, World War 2, and renovation from 2007 to 2012

In 1939, the stained-glass dome of the Printemps Haussmann store was completely dismantled and stored in Clichy to prevent its destruction by bombing raids. In 1973, the dome was restored by the grandson of master glassmaker Brière, according to plans preserved in the family workshop.
From 2007 to 2012, a major renovation project was carried out on the facades of the two Printemps Haussmann buildings. The aim was to reinforce the store's image as a "masterpiece of the decorative arts", and turn its buildings into models of architectural avant-garde, as in the store's early years.

Christmas window displays at Le Printemps department store at Haussmann Boulevard in Paris

For six weeks at the end of the year, Printemps Haussmann's animated Christmas window displays are an ever-renewed attraction for Parisians, provincials and foreigners alike. In all, over ten million people attend this event every year.
The tradition dates back to the creation of Printemps in 1865, but it was Le Bon Marché that "popularized the concept" from 1909 onwards. Christmas window displays became widespread in the 1920s.

Key figures for Printemps Haussmann

  • 45,500 m2 of store space, divided into 3 buildings and 27 floors
  • over a million different items on sale
  • 40,000 visitors per day (and up to 100,000 during Christmas)
  • 7.5 million visitors a year, including 20% from abroad
  • Sales: 1501 million euros in 2015 (recent accounts not filed)
  • Net income: 11 million euros in 2015

Who owns Le Printemps?

Changes in ownership of the Au Printemps Group over the decades have not weakened the store's commercial dynamism.

1865: the founders: Jules Jaluzot and Jean-Alfred Duclos created the general partnership Au Printemps by notarial deed on May 11, 1865, a meaningful title whose first slogan reveals its full depth: "Au Printemps, everything is new, fresh and pretty, just like the title: Au Printemps".
1866: departure of Jean-Alfred Duclos
1905: Jaluzot is forced to resign by his shareholders following an economic crisis linked to falling sugar prices. He is replaced by Gustave Laguionie.
1920: On Gustave Laguionie's death, his son Pierre takes over as head of Printemps.
1972: The Maus Frères group (Maus Frères Holding is a Swiss group of distribution and sales companies) takes control of the Printemps group. In 1977, Jean-Jacques Delort heads a new team whose aim is to turn around Printemps' difficult economic situation.
1991. François Pinault acquires the Printemps group, then merges his own group with Printemps, which takes the name Pinault-Printemps. The group includes Conforama, Prisunic, La Redoute and, in 1994, Fnac. Printemps now focuses on five strong universes: Beauty, Art of Living, Fashion, Accessories and Men.
2006: The PPR group sells Printemps to the RREEF real estate fund (a subsidiary of Deutsche Bank!), in association with the Italian Borletti group.

Le Printemps after François Pinault (from 2013)

2013: In March, the Borletti Group announces exclusive negotiations with the Luxembourg fund "Divine Investments", or "DISA", made up of Qatari investors including Mayapan, the personal fund of the Emir of Qatar, for a majority stake in its capital and the acquisition of RREEF's shares.
In April, AFP reported that the same fund planned to take control of the Borletti group, which would become the sole owner of Printemps.
In June of the same year, the Paris public prosecutor's office, under the direction of François Molins, announced that it intended to open a preliminary investigation into the sale of Printemps to the DISA fund owned by Qatari investors.
Summer 2013:During the summer, investigative newspaper Mediapart published an email exchange between Printemps CEO Paolo de Cesare and Jérôme Cahuzac, then Minister of the Budget, referring to the latter's tax exile in Switzerland. The investigation subsequently revealed that Paolo de Cesare had set up a financial arrangement enabling the 22 million euros in bonuses paid on the sale of Printemps to pass through a holding company domiciled in Singapore, thus avoiding taxation. The capital gains realized on the sale (over 600 million euros in five years) were also tax-exempt, as they were paid into an account in Luxembourg.
2020: In March, the Group parted company with CEO Paolo de Cesare, who had held the post since 2007.
September 2020: Six months later, in September, he is succeeded as CEO by Jean-Marc Bellaiche, formerly of BCG, Tiffany & Co and Contentsquare.

Today, the parent company of Au Printemps is Printemps Holding Luxembourg, controlled by the DISA fund, made up of investors from Qatar. The Le Printemps Group comprises:

  • 4 banners, Printemps, Citadium, Place des Tendances and Made In Design;
  • the Printemps group is expressed through its 20 Printemps department stores in France, including 4 affiliates, 9 Citadium stores
  • and 4 e-commerce sites, printemps.com, citadium.com, Place des Tendances and Made In Design;
  • and has established itself as a key omnichannel player, distributing over 3,500 brands in France and abroad.
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