In 2010, renovation work began on the Laennec Hospital’s main buildings, set on either side of a chapel built during King Louis XIII’s reign. More than 17,000 m2 were restored and embellished in keeping with the site’s atmosphere and protected spaces, providing a modern working environment where creativity can flourish.
“Given the almost total absence of documentation, it was only through close examination of the existing elements and a hunt for the rarest and most tenuous clues – when they were not hidden from view – that we were able to understand this understated, modest and almost austere architecture and to define the restoration project as precisely as possible.”
Chief Architect of France’s historical monuments.
Many months of painstaking work were necessary to bring the remains to life. A ten-year study and three years of renovation to shed light on a history both unexpected and unconventional. Day after day, original facades, peripheral galleries and rooms with majestic vaulted ceilings were reborn, revealing the color and pure quality of Lutetian limestone or Pierre de Paris, typical of the Classical period.
Numerous treasures emerged: ancient wood-framed sash windows allowing for air to enter a narrow staircase, or impressive iron hooks that were apparently intended to support the building’s rafters in the attic.
The result is utter harmony. The buildings’ architecture fittingly suits the symmetry and simplicity of the enclosed and open gardens, which owe their renewed splendor to landscape gardener, Philippe Raguin.