The oldest planned square, the Place des Vosges, is one of the most beautiful parks and gardens in Paris. Situated near the Museum of Hunting and Nature, and surrounded by residential buildings, this place was listed as a historical monument in October 1954. Today, this green space is perfect for relaxing far away from the busy Parisian streets. The Place des Vosges should be on everyone's must-see list.
In 1805, Henry IV, the King of French, ordered the construction of the new square in Paris on the occasion of the engagement of Louis XIII and Anne of Austria. This unique square was inaugurated in the heart of Paris in 1612, and it was named the Place Royal. It was surrounded with 36 brick residential buildings, mansions of the upper-middle class, and officials of the monarchy and its access was strictly forbidden to poorly dressed people. No wonder that this square has become a favorite place of the French and European aristocrats. They just loved to meet here and hang around. But, the French Revolution would soon change everything. In 1800, the square was renamed the Place des Vosges, in honor of the French department of the Vosges, the first to have paid the tax and support the revolutionary army. Today, this is a perfect place to take a break and escape from the city hustle.
The Place des Vosges is renowned for being the place of residence of many notable personas, such as internationally acclaimed journalists, artists, and politicians. In one of the buildings surrounding this square lived Victor Hugo, probably the best-known French writer. This building was even transformed into a museum named the House of Victor Hugo in 1902. Isadora Duncan, an American and French dancer as well as Colette, a French author, were also residents of the Place des Vosges. Until recently, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, a former Managing Director of the IMF, was domiciled in this oldest planned square.
The Place des Vosges, one of the oldest and most beautiful parks and gardens in Paris, is open every day and the entrance is free of charge. Before you lay on the lawn and start daydreaming, make sure to go for a walk around the arcades of the residential buildings. You might even have a chance to attend a classical concert, as many musicians love to come here and play music under those historic vaults.
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