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Located on Rue de Sèvres on the Left Bank in Paris, close to the Montparnasse district, the Bon Marché was originally a simple shop that Aristide Boucicaut and his wife would transform in 1852 into a department store to suit the rapidly growing city of Paris. It was an immediate success. Based on a design that revolutionized business models in use up to that time, the Bon Marché became the first department store in France and would influence many builders throughout the world. In 1869, the Boucicauts undertook to expand their space and hired the architect, Louis-Charles Boileau, to erect a new building. An art gallery and an events hall were included. The Bon Marché's success was the inspiration for Emile Zola's novel, "Au Bonheur des Dames", where he described the hustle and bustle of a new world instituted by the success of large department stores.
In 1910, after Mrs. Boucicaut decided to create lodgings for her customers close to the store, the Hôtel Lutetia came into being and is still a landmark luxury hotel on the Left Bank.
Today, the Bon Marché is a high-end store representing a chic, Parisian style and the art of fine living. The greatest luxury brands are to be found there from the realms of fashion, beauty products and design. Since 1988, the Bon Marché's "Grande Épicerie de Paris" has offered food lovers refined, epicurean delights.