Bibliothèque nationale de France, Richelieu

BnF I Richelieu

The historic home of France's national library, the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, has reopened on 17 September 2022. The building is an 18th-century architectural treasure that offers a unique cultural experience just a few steps away from the Louvre...

  1. What to see and do
  2. Museums and monuments
  3. Monuments
  4. BnF I Richelieu


After more than 10 years of renovation and transformation, the Richelieu site, the historic home of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, will finally reopen its doors on 17 September 2022.

With a spectacular reading room open to all, new rooms for researchers, a museum, a temporary exhibition gallery, a bookshop, a café and a garden, the BnF - Richelieu is now open to the general public. The site's opening will be celebrated on the weekend of 17 and 18 September 2022 as part of the European Heritage Days with free events staged by the director Anne-Laure Liégeois.

A historic building and a unique cultural offer in the heart of Paris

Ideally located in the historic centre of Paris, a few steps away from the most iconic sites – the Louvre museum, the Museum of Decorative Arts, the Tuileries and Palais-Royal gardens, the Comédie Française and more – the BnF is returning to one of its key missions to provide access to knowledge and culture for all in a magnificent setting.

The new tour allows readers, researchers and casual visitors to take advantage of a fully updated cultural assortment and an architectural walk covering the 17th to the 21st centuries, with expressions by the architects Mansart, de Cotte, Labrouste, Pascal and Roux-Spitz. A "vast archipelago of spaces", many of which are listed or registered as historic monuments, such as the Mazarin Gallery, the Mansart Gallery, the Oval Room and the Louis XV Salon – along with ** their sumptuous decorations painted by Romanelli, Boucher, Van Loo and Natoire** – plus the most recent enhancements, like the Glass Gallery, all showcase the wealth and diversity of the BnF's collections, which have been built up since the Middle Ages by the kings of France and continue to grow up to today.

The new BnF museum encompasses the full extent of these rich collections over 1200 m² and displays nearly 900 exceptional works. Discover rare pieces such as the Grand Camée de France, the throne of Dagobert and Charlemagne's chessboard. Illuminated manuscripts (The Psalter of Saint Louis) and key foundational documents in philosophy and literature such as Pascal's Pensées and Victor Hugo's Les Misérables are displayed alongside prints by Rembrandt and Picasso, photographs by Nadar and Depardon, as well as objects and costumes.

The Oval Room, a fully restored architectural gem designed at the very end of the 19th century by Jean-Louis Pascal and opened in 1936, offers free access to more than 20,000 volumes that enable visitors to discover the history of the arts and heritage, as well as comics and digital arts. Much more than a reading room, the Oval Room is intended to be an easy-to-access place to visit and explore experiences of all kinds with innovative tools such as digital costume fitting, to take a playful journey through the BnF's collections.

With its two entrances on rue de Richelieu and rue Vivienne, the Richelieu site promises to introduce visitors to an exceptional cultural heritage, open to all, in the heart of Paris. It’s simply stunning!

Back to tab description

Community facilities

Access and contact

5, rue Vivienne
75002 Paris 2ème

    Bus: lines 20, 29, 39, 48, 74, 85 Metro: lines 3 (Bourse), 1 and 7 (Palais-Royal-Musée du Louvre), 7 and 14 (Pyramides).

    Days and opening hours

    From 1709 to 3112 between 9 am and 8 pm. Closed on Sunday. Closed exceptionally on January 1st, Easter Monday, Feast of the Ascension, Whit Monday, May 1st, May 8th, July 14th, August 15th, November 1st, November 11th and December 25th. Musée de la BnF I Richelieu: Tuesday from 10am to 8pm. Wednesday to Sunday: 10am to 6pm. Closed on Monday.



    Spoken languages

    • French
    Back to tab informations


    • Hearing disability
    • Visual disability
    • Accessible for self-propelled wheelchairs
    • Reception staff sensitized to the reception of people with disabilities

    5, rue Vivienne
    75002 Paris 2ème

    • Copyright image:
    • Guillaume Murat- BnF