Christian Louboutin Will Help Restore This French Art Deco Palace

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As an homage to the the palace that inspired him as a child, Christian Louboutin is set to sponsor a large-scale restoration of the Palais de la Porté Dorée–the art deco palace located on the edge of the 12th arrondissement in Paris, where Louboutin grew up.

The architectural gem was first actualized in 1931, when French architects Albert Laprade, Léon Jaussely and Léon Bazin designed it to accommodate the Paris Colonial Exhibition. It has since been the home of various exhibits and events, and now houses an aquarium as well as the National Center of the History of Immigration.

In fact, the aquarium served as muse for one of Louboutin’s earliest shoe designs–a metallic leather pump with a mirroring pattern inspired by the tropical fish he had spotted when visiting the palace.

“Today, the palace also represents the values that I share around diversity and openness to the world,” the designer said when announcing the sponsorship Friday.

The restoration, which will be sponsored in large by Louboutin, will include a renovation of the palace’s intricate facade: One featuring bas-reliefs of animals, ships, wildfires, and oceans, designed by sculptor Alfred-Auguste Janniot back in the ’30s.

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