Worth the price of admission

The City of Paris has offered residents and visitors alike free access to 435 public toilet facilities, but today it is officially opening a public lavatory that charges a 2€ admission fee. From what I have seen so far, the cost is well worth a visit.

The lavishly appointed facility closed in 2011 after more than a century of use. In recently years, it has been completely restored and renovated. Located under Place de la Madeleine, the ornate facility was built in 1905 and originally welcomed both men and women in its underground galleries. Decorated with mahogany woodwork, stained glass, ceramic tiles, and colorful mosaics, the facilty was inspired by 19th century public lavatories in London.

The restored gender-neutral toilets, which will be open from 10am to 6pm, are situated in what was the original “ladies” section. The 1905 “mens” space has been lost to  public transit. The lavatory, shut because of disuse and lack of maintenance, has taken 12 years to restore. The restoration of the woodwork, glass and tiles was finally completed last month but the toilets, sinks and taps have been replaced with similar modern models. An old shoe-shine chair, preserved on the site, adds to the impression of entering a grand “throne room”.





This entry was posted in Architecture, Art, Europe, History, Public Transport, Tourism and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Worth the price of admission

  1. This lavatory is a beauty! The restored and newly designed lavatories. Brings back good memories of how they used to be!
    Many thanks regards

  2. Impossible to object to that admission charge.

  3. When did they start offering free access to bathrooms? I never knew that, it used to be a euro everywhere

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