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A city trip for an immersion in design

Montpellier stands out thanks to its daring, contemporary architecture, which can be seen in some modern and futuristic neighbourhoods. Buildings of interest include Pierresvives, the City Hall, the Port Marianne district and the Antigone, designed by internationally famous architects (Jean Nouvel, Zaha Hadid, Massimiliano Fuksas, Ricardo Boffil).

These contemporary creations are surrounded by over 1,000 years of urban architecture, condensed in an ancient city centre: a medieval fortified enclosure, a labyrinth of side streets, mansion courtyards... They have become unmissable cultural sites for modern architecture and contemporary design, like La Panacée or the Agora, International City of Dance.

New for 2019:

  • Les Halles du Lez
    The future Halles du Lez covered market (opening in June 2019) will be home to the region's finest traders, producers and restaurateurs, in a remarkable setting.  This 3-storey hotspot devoted to eating well combines traditional market hall architecture and a contemporary layout in an industrial-ethnic spirit.
    Local gastronomy will have pride of place with the arrival of Chefs Pierre-Oliver Prouhèze, Jacques and Laurent Pourcel, or the famous Bebelle from Narbonne.
  • Le MoCo, Montpellier Contemporain (Contemporary Montpellier), completes its palette
    A multi-site structure dedicated to contemporary art, Le MoCo is expanding. As well as La Panacée and the Higher School of Fine Arts, the Hotel Montcalm will be added in June 2019. Montpellier and its Metropolitan Area are thus inventing a new generation art centre, encompassing the whole art sector from learning to exhibition.


Topic: Contemporary Montpellier.

Period: all year.

- Walk in the Port Marianne district, discovering contemporary Montpellier with the City Hall by Nouvel and Fontès, the RBC Design Center, the Lycée Georges Frêche hospitality school, Le Lez Market, and old warehouses that have been restored and decorated by street artists, and now are home to startups, restaurants, craftspeople and antique stores.
- Cookery lessons at the RBC Kitchen, the RBC Design Center's restaurant.
- Discovering historic sites: the Agora International City of Dance (formerly a women's prison), La Panacée – centre for contemporary culture (1st site where medicine was taught), and the Carré Saint-Anne (a deconsecrated church).

Place to go: the L'Arbre Blanc restaurant, 21st-century architecture.

Experts to meet: Charles Fontes or Eric Cellier, associate chefs at the L’Arbre Blanc restaurant. Nicolas Bourriaud, Director of Le MoCo and La Panacée, co-founder of the Palais de Tokyo. Choreographer in residence at the Agora, International City of Dance.

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