Boulevard des Capucines
Boulevard des Capucines at the start of the 20th century
440 m (1,440 ft)
35.40 m (116.1 ft)
Madeleine . Chaussée-d’Antin
rue Louis-le-Grand, rue de la Chaussée-d’Antin
rue des Capucines, rue de Caumartin
Located near the Métro stations: Opéra and Madeleine.
The Boulevard des Capucines is one of the four ‘grands boulevards’ in Paris, a chain of boulevards running east-west that also includes Boulevard de la Madeleine, Boulevard des Italiens, and Boulevard Montmartre.
The name comes from a beautiful convent of Capuchin nuns whose garden was on the south side of the boulevard prior to the French Revolution.
The former name, Rue Basse-du-Rempart (“bottom-of-the-wall street” in French), suggests that, in the beginning, the street paralleled the city wall of Paris. Then, when the wall was destroyed, the street was widened and became a boulevard.
Piet Mondrian’s little known story De groote boulevards (Les Grands Boulevards), written in 1920 in Paris at the instance of Theo van Doesburg, was inspired by the Boulevard des Capucines.
Very first movies
At No. 1 stood the Neapolitan Café, famous for the writers, journalists, and actors who were its patrons, such as Catulle Mendès, Jean Moréas, Armand Silvestre, and Laurent Tailhade.
No. 2, at the junction with the rue de la Chaussée-d’Antin, was the site of the former Hotel de Montmorency, then Théâtre du Vaudeville 1869, later Paramount Opéra movies in 1927 and Gaumont Opéra since 2007. The main hall was the ‘grand salon’ of the Hotel in the 18th century. The rotunda on the facade has been kept.
No. 5 was the location of the photographic studio of Pierre-Louis Pierson (later associated with the Mayer brothers), who was the photographic collaborator of Virginia Oldoini, Countess di Castiglione.
At No. 7, the Georama was erected in 1825: it was possible to see “the whole earth” inside a sphere 14 meters in diameter.
At No. 8, Jacques Offenbach lived from 1876 and died in 1880.
At No. 12, the Grand Hotel was built on a former swamp-garden.
No. 14 was the site of the Hotel Scribe and the location of the former Grand Café where the first public showing of movies by Auguste and Louis Lumière took place in the Salon Indien on 28 December 189