Built between 1869-1875, this Haussmann-era mansion was home to the obscenely wealthy Edouard André and his wife, the artist and socialite Nellie Jacquemart. Bequeathed by Nellie to the Insitut de France and opened to the public in 1913, the Museum André stands today as a voyeur’s dream.
In addition to the fantastic collection of Renaissance and 18th-century French art, the very 19th-century residence allows the 21st-century visitor a peek into the fabulous life of the Second Empire’s haute bourgeoisie. The Jacquemarte-Andrés were especially famous for their lavish parties, facilitated by the grand maison’s collapsible walls, orchestra balconies and unique porte-cochère.
Avoid the locale on weekends—especially during special exhibitions—as the museum is a Parisian favorite and accordingly slammed with visitors. Best to go when you have room to leisurely revel at the grandeur of how the elite class once lived.