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Designed between 1929 and 1932, the Villa Cavrois is the most emblematic achievement of the architect Mallet-Stevens. For this reason it s a monument historique in 1990 and was bought by the state in 2001.
In the early twentieth century, the north of France was one of the most industrialised regions in the country. Roubaix and Tourcoing were major centres of textile production, so much so that Roubaix became known as the ‘city of a thousand chimneys’.
The residence is a structure of imposing proportions (including a 60 metre-long façade and 2800m² of flooring), and it comprises two symmetrical wings, adhering to the tradition of the aristocratic residences of the 17th century. It is, however, a modern villa, characterised as such by the starkness of its aesthetic canon, its lack of ornamental décor, its large number of rooftop terraces, its advanced technological features (central heating, telephone, electric timer, lift, etc.) and its composition from industrial materials (glass, metal, steel).
During World War II the villa was occupied by the German army and was turned into barracks. After the Liberation, the Villa Cavrois was given a completely different interior layout, created by the architect Pierre Barbe. However, the villa was abandoned after the deaths of the Cavrois family, and quickly deteriorated after falling prey to vandalism. It is only thanks to the mobilisation of a conservation association in 2001 that the state bought the villa and the central part of the park, restoring the estate to its former glory.