Nouvelles Galeries is the place to meet
A new beginning with so many new surprises
Since the Galeries Lafayette mall in Annecy just received a makeover, we have decided to take you on a tour of the recently inaugurated building with its brand-new layout.
This original concept at one of Annecy’s most iconic locations, Galeries Lafayette, includes a circular promenade and extensions that house a thriving ecosystem of shops and services, and enough space for a lively schedule of events and entertainment all year long.
© Stef Candé / Les Nouvelles Galeries
Every visit transforms into a unique experience that lies at the crossroads between shopping, amusement, and leisure. The entire structure surrounding the Galeries Lafayette department store (also recently renovated) has been renamed “Nouvelles Galeries“.
This modern interpretation of the original design was handed over to Manuelle Gautrand, an award-winning French architect, and David Thustrup, a Danish architect and designer. Here are just a few good reasons to visit for an hour or two (or three).
For its unique architecture
Nouvelles Galeries in Annecy first opened in 1969; designed by architect Antoien Dory, it was built on land that a Soeurs Blanches orphanage once occupied. The name transformed into the Galeries Lafayette that we now all know.
While the original building fit well into the Annecy landscape, it stood out with its amazingly immaculate concrete spiral parking lot exit ramp, a perhaps unintended tribute to the Guggenheim Museum. When focusing on the architecture, you can explore the secrets of the structure’s unique design filled with so many astonishing symbols, like the parking lot’s 52 support pillars and 365 load-bearing cross beams that represent the number of weeks and days in a year. For the new version, the pillars were redesigned and numbered.
© Stef Candé / Restaurant Mi Amici delle Alpi
For the fun-filled experience
All year long, Nouvelles Galeries organizes a variety of regularly scheduled and one-time sporting, leisure, and cultural events and activities: arts and crafts workshops for kids and yoga sessions all day long on Saturdays and Wednesdays during school holiday periods (in partnership with “Festival des Enfants”), arts and crafts workshops for adults (dried flower crowns, candle making, upcycling), expos, round-table discussions on a variety of topics, meet-and-greets with designers…
© Stef Candé / Yoga in the circular walk
As well as the trio Bazar, Bozar, Bizar, invented by Wondervision Creative Studios, in partnership with ESAAA Annecy (the Annecy Alps Undergraduate and Graduate School of Art) and HEAD (the University of Applied Arts and Design) in Geneva. Three new areas focus on reusing materials (a repair and reuse center, an art gallery, and a boutique run by Bazar Sans Frontières, one of the leading back-to-work programs in Haute-Savoie).
Starting on November 17, add a cornucopia of festive events and entertainment between now and Christmas, as well as a few must-see experiences:
© Wondervision / Recycling centre Bozar
- On December 3, workshops on animated films and virtual reality as part of the Winter Festival.
- Through February 28, the I-Dance Experience, a virtual dance floor where you can make an avatar that you create, draw, and scan, dance. A fun, interactive experience for everyone, available for free Wednesdays and Sundays at certain times during opening hours.
- Starting on October 12, TeamLab, an interactive digital exhibit, takes you on a one-hour voyage through the four seasons: seasonal plants that bloom and wither, and are in a perpetual state of change. World-renowned Japanese artists created this immersive experience that takes visitors deep into a creative digital world.
© Wondervision / Festive events
Atome, indoor climbing for beginners and experts
Atome is an all-new hybrid concept that combines sports and lifestyle, with a high-end climbing gym and a restaurant where everything is made using fresh and primarily local products. The idea formed when Helena and her associates from the world of sports met the two gentlemen from Canailles – a restaurant on Avenue de Genève – Nicolas and Nicolas (one Nicolas hosts and serves, while the other spends his time in the kitchen).
© Stef Candé / Climbing hall Atome
While the gym proves more than difficult enough for even the most hardcore climbers, the goal is to make climbing accessible to first-timers, beginners, and climbers of all levels and ages, even as young as four years old. The warm and friendly atmosphere simply calls to you. Weekly lessons are offered, as well as memberships or simple day passes. The avid climber will enjoy the XXL boulder with new problems set every week by the gym’s creative route setters. Unique in France, a connected, adjustable wall allows climbers, through the Kilter Board app, to set challenges and compare themselves to other climbers all around the world.
The concept has already proven successful, with regulars who use the gym to work remotely, organize informal meetings, and even to play cards… as well as stay for a meal. The menu offers high-end, gourmet street food. We promise, once you’re here you’ll feel right at home and never want to leave. So if you’re curious, stop by and check it out, the lights are on and the doors open from 09:00 (9am) to 23:00 (11pm).
Did you know that?
Did you know that Nouvelles Galeries had the very first escalator in Haute Savoie? Today, a 15-meter long slide takes visitors from the first to the ground floor lickety-split!
- © Stef Candé
Journalist: Aude Pollet-Thiollier
Translation: Darin Reisman