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The long-awaited renovation of the Palais Caïs de Pierlas (otherwise known as “Matisse House”) is finally finished. And the result is. . .well, you decide. Here is a photo of the original:

Palais Caïs de Pierlas

And here is a photo I just snapped today:

Matisse House now

It looks neater for sure but maybe too neat? I admit that I found the new facade jarring. I miss the sunny tones of the original and I’m not sure I like the addition of the grayish-beige trim. The actual tone is much grayer than appears in this photo.

I shouldn’t complain I suppose as the road to the building’s renovation was long and hard. The owners are descendants of the original Caïs de Pierlas family and they’ve been at odds for many years over the building’s future and many other money matters. Finally in 2010 the city of Nice stepped in as guardians of Nice’s architectural and cultural heritage. Constructed in 1693, the building became famous in 1921 when Matisse moved in. Enchanted with the views over Cours Saleya and the sea, the artist created some of his most iconic paintings there until his departure in 1938.

Even after the city went to court to force the owners to maintain the facade, it took years to resolve the legal issues. The scaffolding went up in mid-September 2020 and the result was unveiled this week.

What do you think?


4 Replies to “Matisse House Renovated”

  1. avatar

    Where exactly is Palais Caïs de Pierlas? It does not come up when searching with Google Maps.

    1. avatar

      It’s on the eastern edge of the Cours Saleya.

  2. avatar

    I agree with you. It’s great that the building is being maintained but the facade is dull compared to the old one. It almost looks like one of those painted trompe l’oeil.

    1. avatar

      It does! And my camera made it look much livelier than it is. What appears beige is actually a dull gray.

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