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Bury Saint Joseph; Sell a House

Volume XXII, Issue 11

The charming garden of the house for sale on Rue Tatin in Normandy, France

A PIECE OF THE ART WORLD ON QUAI VOLTAIRE

Karl Lagerfeld’s futuristic Quai Voltaire apartment is going under the hammer at Sotheby’s March 26th.

The lucky buyer of this 2,800-square-foot gem, situated in a 17th-century building on Quai Voltaire, will enjoy a five-star panoramic view encompassing the River Seine River and the Musée du Louvre, a mere six-minute stroll from the front door. The auction is scheduled for March 26th by the Paris Chamber of Commerce and Industry, with bidding starting at €5.3 million, or approximately $5.7 million.

View of the Seine from Lagerfeld's apartment on Quai Voltaire in Paris

According to the Notaire overseeing the transaction, Lagerfeld, renowned as the creative force behind Chanel, resided in the apartment from 2006 until his passing in 2019. Over two years, the fashion maestro transformed the space, replacing its dated interiors with contemporary elements like concrete and resin flooring, concert-like lighting, and a revolving glass bookcase, which remains an integral part of the property.

The result is not just modern but according to reports, visionary. Featured in a piece by writer John Colapinto for The New Yorker in 2007, shortly after the renovations, Lagerfeld described the contrast between the building’s centuries-old façade and his apartment’s sleek design as “like floating in your own spaceship over a very civilized past.”

Inside Lagergfeld's apartment on Quai Voltaire in Paris

The apartment building for Lagerfeld's apartment on Quai Voltaire in Paris

Other highlights of the apartment include three expansive windows framing the Seine, a sleeping area secluded by sandblasted panels, a bathroom featuring a Corian bathtub, a spacious dressing room, and a contemporary stainless-steel kitchen. The property also boasts of a state-of-the-art security system, two cellars, and a garage.

Despite its austere design, Lagerfeld’s quirky personal touches brought whimsy to the Quai Voltaire apartment. During a visit in 2021, a Vogue journalist observed Pokémon stickers adorning the silver door of a Whirlpool fridge—a nod to Lagerfeld’s playful side. He once remarked that “the last thing he wanted to be was a serious person.”

Lagerfeld’s personal effects were auctioned by Sotheby’s between 2021 and 2022. The auction house offered over 1,000 items from Lagerfeld’s eight different residences, including his 19th-century house near Versailles, his Monaco apartment, and his office in Paris. Alongside the whimsical fridge, Sotheby’s also sold custom Coca-Cola bottles, DVDs of Lagerfeld Confidential (2007), and suits by Hedi Slimane.

You may or may not be a contender, but either way, click here to see all of the photos, as reported in the Robb Report.

BURYING SAINT JOSEPH

A friend in New Orleans reminded me that March 19th is Saint Joseph’s Day, the patron saint of real estate, and that we should “bury a Saint Joseph’s statue in Susan Loomis’ yard!”

You may recall that Susan Herrmann Loomis’ Normandy home is for sale—an 11th-century house, which I am convinced would make a great auberge, or for sure, a very special home. Our New Orleans friend, also reminded us that we should check “online to see if it [the statue] needs to be upside down and what direction it must face.” She went on to add, “Another superstition: if you steal a lemon from a Saint Joseph’s altar (and don’t get caught), you will get a new beau within a month!” And, that “Saint Joseph’s Day is not included on the Catholic calendar. It actually is adapted by the Creoles in Louisiana from the medieval French celebration of mid-Lent.”

The kitchen in the house on rue Tatin

The kitchen in the house on rue Tatin

I had a chuckle, remembering fondly the various rituals New Orleanians impose on themselves that no one else seems to know anything about!

I wouldn’t know from Catholic tradition, but Wikipedia says that Saint Joseph’s Day, also known as the Feast of Saint Joseph or the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, holds significance in Western Christianity as the principal feast day honoring Saint Joseph, the husband of the Virgin Mary and the legal father of Jesus Christ. This day is observed on March 19th and holds the rank of a solemnity in the Catholic Church. Additionally, it is commemorated as a feast or festival in the provinces of the Anglican Communion and the Lutheran Church.

Statue of Saint Joseph

But, Wikipedia doesn’t suggest any superstitions or rituals held in Louisiana. On Reddit.com, it was reported that a statue of Saint Joseph was found buried while landscaping in the backyard. The response to that was:

“We did that when we wanted to sell a house. We weren’t getting much interest, so someone suggested Saint Joseph. We aren’t Catholic but figured we’d give it a try. Maybe he would attract Catholics, right? So I went to a Catholic bookstore and asked for a Saint Joseph statue.”

“Trying to sell a house?” the clerk asked. “He had a bunch of them, about $3 each. He said he sells a few every week. I don’t remember all the details, but you are supposed to bury him head down, near one particular corner of the house (I don’t remember which), facing the foundation. Anyway, we had an offer in about a week, for more than any house on our street had ever sold for. I don’t know how much Saint Joseph had to do with it, but I’d give him another go if I was selling another house.”

Another comment on the same site cracked me up: “My parents’ realtor suggested this to my Jewish parents and they were desperate to sell so they did it and the house sold less than a week after.”

With some research, I found quite a bit about good ol’ Saint Joseph and his powers to sell property. I’m not so sure Saint Joseph will replace real estate agents or website promotion of properties, but what they hell…it can’t hurt. The big question I have is when it comes to a Paris apartment, where would you bury it? In the cellar (if that exists)? Ha! I can just see it now!

At the Normandy home, there is plenty of yard in which to deep-six the old guy, so maybe I should plan a day to do this with Susan and chronicle the event? What do you think?

Here’s a really good article to read, that is if you want to go so far as actually burying the statue. And here’s where you can get the kit!

A Saint Joseph home sale kit

A bientôt,

Adrian LeedsAdrian Leeds
The Adrian Leeds Group®

P.S. The house at 1 rue Tatin in Louviers is a very special house that is a landmark in the village and beyond. And someone special deserves to own it, with or without Saint Joseph’s blessing! Visit our site for more information.

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