The Hotel Danube Paris, part of the history of Saint Germain des Prés
The Hotel Danube Paris is a former mansion house built in the 18th century and extended under the Second Empire (1852-1870).
The Hotel Danube Paris presents its history…
Our American friends will note with interest that the United States independence treaty document was signed in 1783, in the building next door which currently houses the Centre for International Studies and Research of the Institute of Political Studies.
It was also at the Hotel Danube Paris that General Sikorski, the exiled leader of the Polish government, stayed at the beginning of the Second World War.
Until the 1960s, the Hotel Danube Paris provided modest accommodation for students of the nearby School of Fine Arts, as well as for a number of more or less bohemian artists who frequented Saint Germain des Prés, which had been the focal point of the capital’s intellectual and artistic scene since the 19th century.
The quarter had forged itself a literary reputation which had become particularly pronounced during the post-war period.
Effectively, it became the meeting point for writers, artists and intellectuals including Sartre and Beauvoir, who gathered in the cellars of nightclubs and jazz clubs and on the terraces of its famous cafes, such as Les Deux Magots, Café de Flore and Le Bonaparte.
At the same time art galleries and antique dealers, interior design boutiques, publishers and booksellers helped to make Saint-Germain-des-Prés the soul of the Left Bank. Over the last twenty years or so, restaurants and fashion boutiques have sprung up, redesigning the face of this quarter whose intellectual appeal has started to wane in the shadow of its tourist attractions.