Grand Magasin Printemps on Boulevard Haussmann

Printemps ("spring" in French; French pronunciation: [pʁɛ̃tɑ̃]) is a French department store (French: grand magasin, literally "big store").

The flagship Printemps store is located on Boulevard Haussmann in the IXe arrondissement of Paris along with other well-known department stores like Galeries Lafayette. There are other Printemps stores in Paris and throughout France. In addition, the store has opened branches outside France, in locations including Andorra, the Ginza shopping district in Tokyo and Jeddah. The store in Seoul, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore which opened in 1980s, and the one in Taipei which opened in 1993 are closed.

The only North American branch was a franchised location in Denver, Colorado, at the Broadway Plaza Shopping Center, which opened in 1987. It is now closed.

Printemps was previously owned by the PPR group, the parent company of Gucci and FNAC.

The figures of the Four Seasons on the façade were sculpted by French sculptor Henri Chapu.

Jaluzot was replaced as owner in 1900 by Gustave Laguionie, after the business came close to collapse. In the early 20th century, the building was then extended along the Boulevard Haussmann by architect René Binet in an art nouveau style. The building burned down, and its interior was rebuilt in the 1920s.

A remarkable feature of the Haussmann store is an elaborate cupola above the main restaurant in the store, installed during the 1923 reconstruction. In 1939, to avoid the risk that it would be destroyed in bombing attacks, the cupola was dismantled and stored at Clichy.[1] It was restored in 1973 by the grandson of its original designer, using plans that had been kept in the archives of the family business. In 1975, the façade and cupola of the building were registered as historical monuments.

Their slogan, invented in 1996, is "Au Printemps, nous avons des vêtements!", which is sung as a catchy jingle on advertisements.

Part of the cupola above the tearoom of the Boulevard Haussmann Printemps store


Printemps (French for “Spring,” as in the season) was founded in 1865, by Jules Jaluzot and Jean-Alfred Duclos. The store was designed by noted architects Jules and Paul Sédille and opened at the corner of Le Havre and Boulevard Haussmann, in Paris France on 3 November 1865. The building was greatly expanded in 1874, and elevators (then a great novelty) from the 1867 Universal Exposition were installed. Rebuilt after a fire in 1881, the store became the first to use electric lighting, in 1888. (Customers could observe the workings of the power plant behind a glass wall.) It was also one of the first department stores with direct subway access, the Metro being connected in 1904.[2]

The policies of Printemps revolutionized retail business practices. The store marked items with set prices and eschewed the haggling based on customer appearance that had previously been standard in retail shopping. Like other grand magasins (literally “big store,” department store) Printemps used the economies of scale to provide high quality goods at prices that the expanding middle-classes could afford. They also pioneered the idea discount sales to clear out dated stocks, and later the use of window models to display the latest fashions. Printemps was noted for its branding innovations as well, handing out bouquets of violets on the first day of each Spring and championing the new Art Nouveau style, with its nature inspired motifs.[3]

In 1904, a near collapse of the business led to the resignation of Jaluzot. He was succeeded by Gustave Languionie who the following year announced the construction of a second store. This location, designed by architect Rene Binet, opened five years later and is famously dominated by a glass domed hall 42 meters in height, and a noted Art Nouveau staircase. (Removed in 1955.) The first store outside of Paris was opened in 1912 in Deauville. Peter Laguionie, son of Gustave took the helm of the store in 1920, rebuilding it after another large fire in 1921. In 1931, Printemps created the discount chain Prisunic. By 1970 there were 23 Printemps locations and 13 Prisunic discount outlets. The oil-price driven French economic crisis of the early 1970s significantly threatened Printemps business model. In response, the firm is transformed into a limited corporation, with controlling interest acquired by the Maus Frères Group. Led by Jean-Jacques Delort the firm embarks on a turnaround strategy, creating specialty stores and brands (such as Armand Thierry clothing) and branching out into retail areas such as food (Disco), and mail ( La Redoute ). In the 1980s, the brand went global, opening stores in Japan, Istanbul, Jeddah, Dubai, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.[4]

Printemps and its subsidiaries were acquired in 1991 by François Pinault and merged with other holding into Pinault-Printemps-Redoute (and now PPR). The Printemps stores focus on beauty, lifestyle, fashion, accessories, and men’s wear. In 1997 a complete renovation of the flagship store was completed. In 2006, PPR sold Printemps to the Borletti group.

On 16 December 2008, the Paris department store Printemps Haussmann was evacuated following a bomb threat from the terrorist group FRA (Afghan Revolutionary Front). The demining services found five sticks of dynamite in the toilet of the store. The FRA claims this assassination attempt and demanded the withdrawal of 3000 French soldiers currently deployed in Afghanistan.


  1. ^ Clichy, Entrepôts du Printemps (French)
  2. ^ Camille Rey, Histoire du Printemps, 1865–1924 , mémoire de maîtrise, dir. Christophe Charle, Université Paris 1, 2004.
  3. ^ Camille Rey, Histoire du Printemps, 1865–1924 , mémoire de maîtrise, dir. Christophe Charle, Université Paris 1, 2004.
  4. ^ Camille Rey, Histoire du Printemps, 1865–1924 , mémoire de maîtrise, dir. Christophe Charle, Université Paris 1, 2004.

External links

Coordinates: 48°52′27″N 2°19′42″E / 48.8740761°N 2.3284686°E / 48.8740761; 2.3284686

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  • printemps — [ prɛ̃tɑ̃ ] n. m. • prinstans XIIe; lat. primus tempus « premier temps » 1 ♦ La première des quatre saisons qui va du 21 mars au 21 juin dans l hémisphère nord. Équinoxe de printemps (⇒ vernal) . Au printemps dernier. Saison qui succède à l hiver …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • printemps — Printemps. s. m. La premiere des quatre saisons de l année, qui commence le 22. de Mars, lorsque le Soleil entre dans le signe du Belier, & où les herbes & les plantes commencent à pousser. Dans le printemps. au printemps. à ce printemps. nous… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • printemps — Printemps, quasi primum tempus. Ver veris, Annus renascens. Qui se fait au printemps, Vernaculum. Le printemps est sur la fin, Ruit ver. Le printemps, ou par le printemps, Per ver. Au commencement du printemps, Vere nouo, Primo vere. Le milieu du …   Thresor de la langue françoyse

  • Printemps — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Printemps (homonymie). Floraison des cerisiers au printemps à Kyōto …   Wikipédia en Français

  • printemps — (prin tan) s. m. 1°   Au sens astronomique, la première des saisons de l année, qui commence du dix neuf au vingt et un mars. •   Le printemps est l intervalle compris entre l équinoxe du printemps et le solstice d été, LAPLACE Exp. I, 2. 2°   Au …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • printemps — nm. : printan nm. (Cordon, Giettaz.215b, Megève, St Nicolas Cha.125, Saxel.002) / ê (Aillon V.273, Albanais.001b, Albertville, Chambéry, Combe Si., Compôte Bauges.271, St Alban Hu., BEA., AMA.) / in (001a.PPA., Aix, Arvillard.228, Montendry,… …   Dictionnaire Français-Savoyard

  • PRINTEMPS — s. m. La première des quatre saisons de l année, qui commence lorsque le soleil entre dans le signe du Bélier. Dans le printemps. Nous aurons un agréable printemps. Toutes les fleurs du printemps. Un beau jour de printemps. Au printemps, les… …   Dictionnaire de l'Academie Francaise, 7eme edition (1835)

  • PRINTEMPS — n. m. La première des quatre saisons de l’année, qui commence vers le 20 mars, quand la déclinaison du soleil devient boréale. Toutes les fleurs du printemps. Un beau jour de printemps. Au printemps, les herbes et les plantes commencent à pousser …   Dictionnaire de l'Academie Francaise, 8eme edition (1935)

  • Printemps — Glaskuppel …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Printemps —    A department store founded in 1865, in Paris by Jules Jaluzot. In 1991, the Pinault Printemps Redouté (PPR) group bought Printemps and divided it into five universes: Beauty, Art of Living, Fashion, Accessories, and Men. The store s façade and …   Historical Dictionary of the Fashion Industry

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