We were so pleased to discover this amazing area in the 15th arrondissement, not far from our hotels – a green space with authentic 1930s details, surrounded by beautiful art deco buildings in a fascinating neighbourhood. Take a look!
It’s amazing how Paris always has something to surprise and enchant you, even if you think you know the city well.
We had vaguely heard of the Square Saint-Lambert and its 1930s elements, but exploring the area was like stepping back in time!
What first strikes you is the architecture around the square, with perfectly-preserved gleaming white buildings from the early 20th century, and the occasional glimpse of the Eiffel Tower…
The detail on these buildings is often impressive and carefully-crafted ….
Then there’s the intriguing names of the streets around the square, which made us want to find out their origins:
- rue du Docteur-Jacquemaire-Clemenceau (a French radiologist and grandson of the revered Georges Clemenceau),
- rue Léon Séché (a poet),
- rue Jean Formigé (an architect and member of the Académie des Beaux-Arts),
- rue Léon Lhermitte (a painter),
- rue Théophraste Renaudot (a doctor and philanthropist)…
It was while scouring Wikipedia for these names that we also learned the history behind the square. The plot used to be a gas factory, but was turned into an a green space in 1933 and is now a protected monument.
With the surrounding buldings quite far back on each side, the square is sunny for most of the day, and although it looks smallish initially, there’s a lot to explore in each corner.
Look around and you may find a sculpted fresco, and old-school shelter, an open-air theatre stage or a brand new eco-friendly garden (in which there’s a great bronze sculpture of two bear cubs by Victor Peter)…
But the most impressive feature is without doubt the pond and its large fountain. This area of the square is calm and full of flowers, and with the light playing on the water, it’s almost magical…
And even though the large central lawn is off limits for the winter while it rests, you can imagine how great a picnic in the summer would be here, or sitting on a bench on one of the leafy alleys…
Even after your visit, there’s plenty to explore nearby. It’s a part of town that has managed to keep a sort of village atmosphere, with a few interesting surprises.
One of these is the great Chaplin Saint-Lambert Cinema which has three screens and specialises in arthouse films. They also have a busy schedule of events, such as debates with journalists or filmmakers, and all films are shown in their original language (with French subtitles).
The square Saint-Lambert and the area around it are well worth a visit at any time of year. It’s like stepping back in time to a calmer era, with greenery and sun to help you really relax!
The Square Saint-Lambert (here) opens at 9am at the weekend and 8am during the week
Closing time varies on the time of year (between 5.45pm and 9.30pm). Full details here
To check out all our photos of the square Saint-Lambert, simply click here.