Standing opposite the Louvre, this building was constructed in the time of Richelieu. This incredible site, with its turbulent history, is a real small town in itself with gardens, theatres and institutions, all of which you can explore during your stay at the Hôtel Brighton.
A place of memory, the Palais-Royal has been the scene of historic events in the city of Paris and bears witness to Parisian life in the past, as in its theatre, the Comédie Française, where Molière was president.
The turbulent history of Palais
The Palais-Royal, located just opposite the Louvre to the north, is a vast complex of monumental buildings including the palace, gardens, galleries and a theatre, as well as various administrative buildings. Built by Richelieu in 1624, the "Palais Cardinal", as it is known, was the residence of Anne of Austria and the young Louis XIV during the events of the Fronde. It was at this time that it took the name of "Palais-Royal". Philippe, Duke of Orleans, also known as "Philippe-Égalité" and father of King Louis-Philippe, inherited the palace just before the French Revolution. Shops, theatres and cafés proliferated, to the delight of the rioters. Philippe-Égalité saw this as a way of inheriting power. The palace became a famous meeting place for the festivities of French society. In 1871, the building was ceded to several institutions of the Republic and today houses the Council of State, the Constitutional Council, the Ministry of Culture and the Comédie Française. The courtyard of the Palais-Royal was redesigned by Daniel Buren at the request of François Mitterrand in 1986. The project, called Les Deux Plateaux, was strongly criticised. It is composed of different black and white cylinders of different heights. The title of the work is enigmatic but could suggest the two plates of a balance, a symbol of freemasonry, dear to Philippe-Égalité.
The theatre and the Place Palais-Royal near the Brighton Hotel
Founded in 1637, also by Richelieu, the theatre was taken over by Molière in 1660. Later, Lully created an opera with a music academy which was unfortunately demolished in 1781. It was not until 1799 that the Comédie Française moved in with its now famous Salle Richelieu. Today, the plays of the greatest classical authors are performed there, Molière's plays being the most performed. Opposite the Comédie Française is the Place Palais-Royal with its notable landmark, Othoniel's work, Le Kiosque des Noctambules, installed next to the Palais-Royal Musée du Louvre metro station. This contemporary art sculpture is made of Murano glass and aluminium.