Paris’s oldest bakery is closing after doing business for over 200 years.
According to Reuters, the Boulangerie Patisserie Au Grand Richelieu in the rue de Richelieu in central Paris is being forced to close shop because the store’s landlord doubled the rent in line with rising property prices.
Claude Esnault, the owner of the bakery for the last 43 years, said the rent on the facility is about to jump from 18,000 euros ($22,860) per year to 35,000 euros ($44,450) per year.
“I would have liked to see someone take over the bakery, but I know it will close and die,” said Esnault, who acquired the Au Richelieu Boulangerie bakery in 1969. ” It’s an end. A sad end.”
The bakery, which at its peak produced some 4,000 baguettes per day, is located in a rapidly growing neighborhood near the Opera Garnier and the Louvre museum. That area is now littered with sushi restaurants and shops that now cater to Japanese tourists.
Mr. Esnault added:
“I feel sorry for the people who live in the neighborhood. The absence of local facilities will make the area dead. It’s like in a village when there’s no bakery and no school.”
Reuters reports that the new tenants of the bakery will turn the shop into a candy store, selling sweets instead of bread.
More on the closing of Paris’ oldest bakery, the Boulangerie Patisserie Au Grand Richelieu, in the video below: