“The most beautiful place in the Paris area,” according to Renoir. In the 19th century, Chatou Island –to the west of Paris and today accessible by public transport – attracted Sunday pleasure-seekers flocking to the Seine. It also attracted the Impressionists, who were charmed by the landscapes and the peaceful flow of the river along its banks. Among the buildings that still grace its shores, Alphonse Fournaise’s restaurant has stood the test of time. Since 1860 his establishment has welcomed artists including Monet, Sisley, Manet, Morisot and Pissarro.
A listed historic monument, the restaurant has revived its rustic lunch service since reopening in 1990, and has preserved its most beautiful decorative aspects. Such as the lovely wrought iron terrace facing the Seine, that is still such a pleasure to sit at. In that very spot Renoir depicted his friends in the 1881 masterpiece, “Luncheon of the Boating Party.” His portrait of the daughter of the restaurant owner “Alphonsine Fournaise” (1879), belongs to the Musée d’Orsay collection. On the first floor, fantastic murals by period illustrators embellish the restaurant’s walls.
Traditional French cuisine is served here. After your meal, the visit continues at the Fournaise Museum, located behind the building. The museum is offering a new trail that pays homage to Renoir through a remarkable and spectacular immersive experience.
Access and contact
Days and opening hours
Every day throughout the year. Closed on Monday.
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- OTI SGBS