Before the House of Denmark
According to historians, links between Denmark and the Champs-Elysées date back to the Vikings. They were said to have established their camp on the location of the colonnade of the Louvre, that is to say on the future route connecting the Louvre to the Arc de Triomphe – via the current site of the House of Denmark.
Up until only four centuries ago, the area around the House of Denmark was considered one of the most insalubrious suburbs of Paris – the Marais des Gourdes. In 1670, Louis XIV asked architect Le Nôtre to design a road connecting the Jardins des Tuileries to the village of Neuilly, as part of a policy aimed at increasing prestige and private buildings. A century later, this road became the Champs-Elysées. Housed in the Marais up until this point, the aristocracy started to feel crowded and moved to large and comfortable residences in the western suburbs of Paris. Thus was born the prestigious district of the Champs Elysées.
During the 19th century, the site of the House of Denmark was occupied by the Jardin Beaujon, a theme park famous for its firework shows and hot-air balloon rides.
At the beginning of the 20th century, a four storey private mansion was built on the current site of the House of Denmark: the Hôtel Subiran consisted of a main house looking out onto the Champs-Elysées, a large interior court and two other buildings looking out onto rue Lord Byron.