Brothels of Paris: Where society took its Leisure
A Private Tour of iconic Brothel Locations
GlobeBleu offers only Bespoke programs. We tailor each itinerary to a specific customer's needs and interests. These experiences and itineraries are examples of what we can do.
Step with me into the dusky, perfumed boudoirs of the historic brothels of Paris.
An integral part of life and the city, the Parisian brothels were very fashionable pleasure palaces, where high society gathered to socialize. Many famous artists, including Toulouse-Lautrec, lived in these brothels, which occupied magnificent 17th - and 18th-century mansions.
Famous Paris brothels and architecture
These houses of (not so very) ill repute left their mark on an entire society and era. Closed by the government in 1946, they have always been romanticized in literature and painting. Today, there remain only the facades of these houses, which have all been preserved, while the interiors have been transformed. Nonetheless, here and there, you can still find traces of their former glory – and notoriety.
Life in the brothel
I will share the history of the best known and most extravagant of these places, which were discreetly tucked among bourgeois homes. I will retrace their history and tell you about the famous people who frequented them, from Edward VII to Marlene Dietrich. I will show you how every house tried to outdo its rivals through fanciful and exotic decor and inventive amenities, such as the Hindu bedroom, the "pleasure chair" and the champagne bath...
Focusing on a few locations with particularly colorful histories, I will talk to you about life in the brothel, and illustrate my story with a selection of historical archives and drawings.
Have a drink in the grandest pleasure palace in Europe
Our experience will take place over tea in one of the oldest brothels, the grandest establishment of its kind under Napoleon III. A hundred years later, the walls have not changed much. The building's decor, despite touches of modernity, still tell a fascinating story.
Paris in a day? I invite you to spend 2 hours for a journey into this most mythical of worlds.
Beyond the brothels, you join a cultural and historical private tour on La Belle Epoque, Paris architecture and decoration and French art de vivre.
GlobeBleu Expert: Maud, Art Historian
Experience: The Brothels of Paris: Where Society took its Leisure
Location: Paris, 1 arrondissement
Language: French, English & Spanish
This Itinerary includes:
- a private tour of iconic brothel locations that marked the early 20th century in the 1st and 2nd arrondissements of Paris.
- a history of the most notorious and extravagant brothels of Paris.
- an exploration of architectural trends and interior design of the Golden Twenties through images and archives.
- a bite to eat at a chic Paris bistro that was once the grandest brothel of Europe under Napoléon III.
- History of the Paris brothels
Important Note: GlobeBleu offers this itinerary, however our experts and travel designers will develop a themed itinerary adapted to your needs and taste.
Maud, an Art Historian, is a graduate of the Ecole du Louvre, has a Master's in Art History from the Sorbonne, and a Master's in Management of Cultural and Social Centers from the Conservatoire national des arts et métiers in Paris (CNAM).
She loves to share the history of the mythical Paris brothels, and stories of the life that took place behind their closed doors. Also an expert on the cinema and literature of the City of Paris and Versailles, she draws on this medium to to bring this era to life.
A designer of experiences for museums and TV channels
Maud has designed and provided experiences focusing on art history for the Louis Vuitton Group, the SNCF, Canal+ and many museums, including the Musée des Années Trente, le Musée Paul Belmondo and the Musée Guimet.
Paris VIP Experience Request for Travel