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Paris 17th district - Etoile
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Paris 17th district - Etoile

As previously mentioned, Place de l'Etoile is located at the "summit" of what was known as Roule hillock which was leveled between 1768 and 1774 by Perronet so that the road leading from Place Louis XV (Concorde) to Neuilly "was of an equal gradient". This hillock was already named "Etoile de Chaillot" in 1730 as a few paths crossed here. Although hardly majestic at the time, the first foundations of the Arc de Triomphe were laid as early as 1806. The “Mur des Fermiers Généraux” circumnavigated it to the east, and two large pavilions serving as tollgates were built by Ledoux. In the 1860’s as Paris grew and the tollgate was moved to Porte de Neuilly (Maillot), they were demolished. Its current layout was defined in 1854 and three years later seven new roads were opened: avenue Friedland, avenue Reine-Hortense (Hoche), avenue Roi Jerome (Mac-Mahon), avenue Essling (Carnot), avenue Eylau (Victor Hugo), avenue d’Iena and avenue Josephine (Marceau). The Etoile neighborhood is on the edge of three arrondissements: the 8th, the 16th and the 17th. The twelve impressive avenues spreading out from Etoile create a remarkable architectural ensemble.

Properties in Paris 17

Avenue Carnot

Established, as previously mentioned, between 1854 and 1867, the avenue got its present name in 1880. It is not only the longest but also the most residential avenue of the twelve radiating from Place Charles de Gaulle. It is lined with paulownia, and beautiful purple flowers bloom each spring.
French composer Maurice Ravel lived at n° 4 avenue Carnot and wrote here some of his major works including waltzes, Ma Mère l'oye and the ballet Daphnis and Chloé.

Place Charles de Gaulle

Over many years numerous additions have embellished this square: a triumphal elephant in 1758, an obelisk in 1770, a sundial in 1799 ... .and it was Napoleon, after Austerlitz, who decided that a colossal triumphal arch in honor of the Grand Army should be constructed; it would bear the name of Arc d'Austerlitz. Its construction was entrusted to Chalgrin. Building was long and complicated, for it was necessary to build foundations 8 meters deep to compensate for the fragility of the base. On April 2nd 1810, only a canvas model was ready to welcome Napoleon and the new empress as they entered Paris. In 1811, the arch was just 5 meters high; it was not until October 9th 1823 that Louis XVIII ordered resumption of work on the arc, now dedicated to the successful conclusion of the Spanish Civil War. By 1831, only the main structure was completed. Thiers again modified the project, and when it was inaugurated in 1836 the Arc de Triomphe was not entirely finished. Decoration of the summit had been a subject of discussion for many years without having been resolved, and even today the monument is in fact unfinished. The “Commune” installed artillery, and the monument was seriously damaged during fighting in 1871. In December 1840, Napoleon’s ashes were placed here for a few hours, and this was to become a tradition imitated with the Duke of Orleans in 1842, Thiers in 1877, as well as Gambetta, Victor Hugo, Carnot, Mac-Mahon, Foch, Joffre, Leclerc, De Lattre and Lyautey ... Under the Arc de Triomphe, the world’s biggest arch and a symbol of French military power, rests the remains of the Unknown Soldier, a homage to the victims of WWI marked by a continuous flame. The remains were buried on January 28th 1921, and the flame lit on November 11th 1923. This square, over the years known as Place de l'Etoile, was renamed in 1970 Place de l’Etoile-Charles de Gaulle.

In this neighborhood, superb private mansions, luxury apartments and “pieds à terre”, as well as office space are on the market.

Avenue de Wagram

Avenue Wagram got its name in 1864 shortly after its opening in honor of Napoleon’s victory against the Austrians on July 6th 1809. It runs from Place Charles de Gaulle to Place Wagram, cut by Place des Ternes at the junction with Avenue des Ternes. The "Haut de Wagram" was one of the capital’s hubs for shows. This part is less residential than the rest of the avenue, and has many shops and offices.

N° 39: Founded in 1812 with the name "Bal Dourlans", the Salle Wagram was a “guinguette” style dance hall The garden extended to numbers 35 to 39. At n° 41: the location of the former "nautical circle".

Place des Ternes was crossed until 1864 by the toll-wall; it was part of Avenue Wagram until 1893.