Hermitage Plaza by
Foster + Partners


Slidehow: architects Foster + Partners have been granted permission to build two 320-metre-high towers beside the Seine, just outside Paris.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

The mixed-use Hermitage Plaza development will provide offices, apartments, a hotel and a spa within the two new buildings, as well as a public plaza that will slope up across a busy road to meet the river's edge.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

Diamond-shaped in plan, the two towers will have a twisted form that tapers outwards as they grow in height.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

The project was first presented at real estate summit MIPIM in 2009 and you can see the first visuals by clicking here.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

Here's the full press release from Foster + Partners:

Hermitage Plaza granted Permis de Construire

Hermitage Plaza will create a new community to the east of La Défense, in Courbevoie, that extends down to the river Seine with cafés, shops and a public plaza at its heart.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

The project incorporates two 320-metre-high buildings – the tallest mixed-use towers in Western Europe – which will establish a distinctive symbol for this new urban destination on the Paris skyline.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

The result of a close collaboration with EPAD, the City of Courbevoie, Atelier de Paysage Urbain and Département de Hauts-de-Seine, the project is intended to inject life into the area east of La Défense by creating a sustainable, high-density community. The two towers accommodate a hotel, spa, panoramic apartments, offices and serviced apartments, as well as shops at the base.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

The buildings face one another at ground level. Open and permeable to encourage people to walk through the site, the towers enclose a public piazza which establishes the social focus. As they rise from an interlocking diamond-shaped plan, the towers turn outward to address views across Paris.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

The angle of the façade panels promotes self-shading and vents can be opened to draw fresh air inside, contributing to an environmental strategy that targets a BREEAM ‘excellent’ rating. The highly efficient diagrid structure uses less steel and emphasises the elegant proportions of the towers.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

A crystal-shaped podium building contains office space, with two detached satellite buildings housing a gallery and auditorium that further extend the public realm.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

The piazza – created by burying the existing busy road beneath a landscaped deck – slopes gently downward to the water’s edge, which is lined with new cafés and restaurants. Connected to the existing Courbevoie and EPAD masterplans, the project will reinforce the regeneration of the riverfront.

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

Click above for larger image

Grant Brooker, a senior partner at Foster + Partners: “Our ambition was to create a project that would inject new life into La Défense by bringing a new type of occupation and creating a new public focus on the edge of the Seine. This announcement represents a very important stage in the project’s development and is thanks to the passion of our client, Emin Iskenderov, and the support we have had from EPAD, the City of Courbevoie and the Département de Hauts-de-Seine – we could not have reached this milestone without them.”

Hermitage Plaza by Foster + Partners

  • Shavool

    It was really kind of Norm to contribute that sketch

    • Chris

      I think the signature completes it.

  • Maxi

    Boring…yawn russian money ni vision

  • josh

    I give it an hour before some americans comment on how insensitive it is because they are twin towers.

    • H-J

      How insensitive of you to generalize in such a way about Americans.

  • kim

    Can't see the Morphosis tower from the Champs Elysées anymore!!! How rude

  • archi

    This is what they should be building in New York.

    • Chris

      Yes just what New York needs, more glass boxes…

      • Als

        These are not boxes!

  • Albaro Recoba

    Foster's 'Go forth and multiply' plaza. I expect a Hellman's sketch with a British two fingered salute to the French financial district!

  • Michael Putman

    the lack of architectural experience (or creation of space) is why interior decorators are becoming more involved and why the general public is confused to what exactly architects do.

  • Tom Ford

    Just what Paris needs – another giant Foster glass thing. Gotta love the sketch too: "so there is a very clear axis and these skyscrapers are, um, well – just a bit to the side of the axis, you know, not on it, but to the side – let's call it close proximity."
    Thank you, your Lordship for enlightening us, it's a fabulous thing, sofas and all.
    Another victory for the 1%.

  • Frankenstein

    So the British Architect gave the French 2 giant fingers…

  • Bjarke Ingels

    Besides the fact that the two towers are of axis and the story of the gates is lost. The renders are very good and it will be sponsored by rich ass politics. Nice job i think.

  • CCC


  • james w

    hahaha love fosters little doodle. more than a little arrogant, and perhaps ever so slightly presumptuous?

  • An erruption of this type, legalized by the municipal authorities could set precedent for similar proposals proliferating, irreversibly altering the urban space along the Seine and threatening the city’s consolidated profile.