Luxury fashion brand Chanel, have announced the acquisition of Villa La Pausa, a house “imagined, built and decorated” by its founder, Madame Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel.
After buying the land in the late 1920s, the construction of the villa ended in January 1930. It is not clear whether Coco Chanel or her lover, Hugh Grosvenor, the 2nd Duke of Westminster, financed the building but 'La Pausa' was built by architect Robert Streitz. The design of the house was modelled on the 12th-century convent-orphanage in Aubazine, which Chanel spent her childhood.
The furnishings were “new, simple and modern,” and caused an immediate sensation, according to the house of Chanel. Guests of the couple included artists, musicians, writers and painters; Igor Stravinsky, Jean Cocteau, Pablo Picasso, Luchino Visconti, Somerset Maugham and Pierre Bonnard being amongst those visited often.
In 1954, after the death of the Duke of Westminster, Coco Chanel sold Villa La Pausa and all its furniture to Emery Reves, an American author and editor. It continued to see numerous high society guests throughout this period, including Winston Churchill, Prince Rainier and Princess Grace of Monaco and the actors Greta Garbo, Errol Flynn and Clark Gable. La Pausa was occupied by Wendy Reves until her death in 2007.
The luxury French fashion house, Chanel, which is owned by Alain and Gerard Wertheimer, released a statement saying: “It is thus an essential testimony to Gabrielle Chanel’s life that has now become part of the heritage of Chanel. After renovations to restore it to its original spirit, La Pausa will take on a new lease of life and radiate the culture and values of Chanel.”