A remarkable discovery was unearthed in Paris’ 9th arrondissement recently when an apartment left untouched since WWII welcomed its first visitors in 70 years.

The owner, one Madame de Florian, had fled the apartment at the onset of WWII for the south of France, never to return, though she faithfully paid rent for the 70-year interim. Mme de Florian’s recent passing at age 91 in 2010 induced her heirs to take stock of the Paris apartment, an experience dubbed as “stumbling into the castle of Sleeping Beauty,” with its treasure trove of beautiful furniture and vintage toys and various objets d’art.

A painting by Italian artist Giovanni Boldini, an important painter during Paris’ Belle Époque of Madame de Florian’s grandmother, Marthe de Florian (an actress, socialite – and lover to Boldini) was discovered amongst the belongings, eventually selling at auction for €2.1 million.

9 Responses

  1. sky

    Wow! That is just unbelievable!! Wouldn’t it have been fantastic to have been one the people to first walk in there? What an absolute aladdins cave of treasures.That painting is gorgeous!

  2. Marie Christopher

    I think this is so amazing!! A treasure..Thanks for sharing it with us.

  3. Malibanne

    Do you relly believe this story? It looks like a room from a Hollywood props back lot. Why would someone pay rent on an unused apartment for 70 years? At some point along the path of live, she would have been bound to realize she didn’t care about the place anymore. Was wasting rent money. Or, at least might have been curious to go back and see what was in there. The South of France is not so far from Paris that she shouldn’t have done that.

  4. kSto

    What an amazing find! This is like Christmas for cultural historians. Wish I could visit.

  5. Sheree

    This is so amazing – such a fantastic story! Makes you wonder what other unknown abandoned homes are out there. Almost a shame it had to be sorted and touched – would have made the most amazing museum!!

  6. silvy

    if i was one of them who first entered this apartment, i would have never left! not to mention selling anything!!!!!!!!!!!!!!