Travel & Pictorial

Paris: Les Boulevards

Pulled from the shelf of a rare-book store by collector Neale M. Albert, Paris: Les Boulevards is a true gem that was forgotten for well over a century but will now enchant readers once again in this charming facsimile edition. Paris’s romantic architecture and vibrant street culture make it one of the most enjoyable cities in the world to stroll and people watch in. This charming little illustrated volume by Charles Franck captures just that through delicately rendered Victorian-era illustrations of panoramic cityscapes of the most gorgeous Parisian boulevards. Complete with horse buggies in the streets, women in society hats, and men in coattails, Paris: Les Boulevards highlights a nostalgic era in both fashion and architecture. To further add to the charm, this volume honors its original unique binding with eleven gatefolds: each page folds out to six panels displaying the whole of the famous promenades at once. With pages including boulevard des Italiens, avenue de l’Opéra, and boulevard Montmartre, Parisians and tourists alike will savor Franck’s beautiful and meticulous re-creations of the city’s most important streets and their buildings. Added to the original book are thoughtful texts on each panel and an introduction by author and curator, Pamela Golbin. Each panoramic image is brought into historical context by Golbin with short anecdotes and musings on famous addresses and landmarks that may or may not still exist. The original book can only be found in one other library in the world, so little is known about the original publication date or the author, adding further captivation to this volume. Paris remains one of the most romantic and dreamy cities in the world, and for this Paris: Les Boulevards will be perfect for those of all ages smitten with the city’s charms.

About The Author

Pamela Golbin is the Chief curator of Fashion and Textiles at the Museé des Arts Décoratifs in Paris and the author of Dries Van Noten, Louis Vuitton/Marc Jacobs, Madeleine Vionnet and Valentino. Charles Franck is an illustrator who presumably lived in France during the late 19th century.

  • Publish Date: March 31, 2015
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Category: Travel - Europe - France
  • Publisher: Rizzoli
  • Trim Size: 8-1/4 x 3-13/16
  • Pages: 8
  • US Price: $29.95
  • CDN Price: $29.95
  • ISBN: 978-0-8478-4504-0


"This slim hardcover offers a delectable nugget that has the power to transport you into a bubble of Gallic magic. It will be a short, sweet trip, as the book is comprised of just 11 gate-folded illustrated maps."

"This enchanting little volume by Charles Franck captures the romantic buildings and street culture of the Victorian era through delicate drawings and panoramic cityscapes with eleven pull-out gatefolds...the illustrations will gently propel you back to another era when leisurely strolling and people watching were an art."

"Each illustration is exquisitely detailed, down to the windows of each building and the elegant horse drawn carriages and 19th century men and women strolling amidst the grandeur of old Paris. . . 'Paris Les Boulevards' is a charming, interesting look at the boulevards of Paris in all their 19th century glory." 

Author Bookshelf: Pamela Golbin