Paris Time Capsule Apartment

This is the sort of story that completely captivates me. Maybe it is my love for antiques and vintage or just because I love the idea of how it must have been to live in another era. Whatever the reason, this story gives you the perfect idea, a complete picture of just how it was. This story is about time capsule that lay undiscovered for 70 years. What an amazing glimpse into the past, I just had to share. This is the apartment of Mrs. De Florian.  Mrs. De Florian left Paris just before the outbreak of World War II when she headed for the South of France, never to return to the city again. For seven decades her apartment lay untouched, the rent faithfully paid but no one knew what was inside.

Painting by Giovanni

In 2010 Mrs. De Florian passed away at the age of 91. It was only when her heirs enlisted professionals to make an inventory of the Parisian apartment she left behind. This is when the time capsule was finally opened. The  team likened the experience to ‘stumbling into the castle of sleeping beauty’. What the team did not know was that amid the dust and cob weds was a painting by Giovanni Boldini, one of Paris’ most important painters of the Belle Époque. The subject, a beautiful Frenchwoman who turned out to be the artist’s former muse and Mrs de Florian’s grandmother, Marthe de Florian, a beautiful French actress and socialite. The art world went nuts for the story and the painting. Which later sold at auction for $3 million.

Why did Mrs. De Florian never return? I guess the answer to that died with her but for us some of the details of her life will live on in these photos. If you want to learn more about the painting and the apartment check out this article by The Telegraph.

Enjoy the amazing photos of the apartment as found in 2010

All Photos by GETTY


  1. That is amazing. I do wonder why she never returned. Maybe she was too traumatized by the war.

  2. What a great story–so glad you posted it! The painting is stunning and the stuffed ostrich is, well, weird.

I'd love to hear what you think!

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