The 1905-built Lavatory de la Madeleine had been closed for 12 years but recently underwent a comprehensive restoration

Some public toilets are not only a place to relieve yourself but are important architectures with a historical design that represents an era. That’s the case of the Lavatory de la Madeleine in Paris.

According to this article, The Madeleine opened in 1905 and is a wonderful example of belle époque design, with stained glass windows, lovely ceramics and mosaics, brass faucets, and varnished wood furnishings.

The Lavatory de la Madeleine has reopened after being closed since 2011 for lack of use. And it looks just fantastic.

It was initially a private women’s restroom; the adjacent men’s restroom, built at the same time, is now used by the public transportation agency RATP. But, in the 1990s, several of the cabins were converted to urinals, making the restroom mixed-sex.

After being closed for 12 years due to neglect and lack of use, the restroom has finally been repaired. The restoration of the woodwork, glass, and tiles was eventually finished last month, but similar contemporary models have been used in lieu of the old toilets, sinks, and taps. The site’s preservation of an ancient shoe-shine chair adds to the feeling of entering a lavish “throne room”.

The introduction of public restrooms in London in the 1880s served as inspiration for the concept. The purpose of the underground facilities was to be both functional and aesthetically pleasing. There are now only six such restrooms left in Paris, one of which is located on the Champs-Élysées.

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It’s stylish, but there are costs related to doing your business here. It is outrageously expensive to use the Lavatory de la Madeleine; it costs a hefty €2 ($1.80, $2.10). But, it also serves as a cultural marvel, so it could be more accurate to consider those two euros as paying for a kind of museum admission.

The eighth arrondissement’s Lavatory de la Madeleine is located at the base of the La Madeleine church, built in the nineteenth century. Madeleine, which is accessible through lines 8, 12, and 14, is the closest metro station.

Not just Paris has some gorgeous public restrooms. Tokyo is building a series of amazing public toilets around the city as part of the Tokyo Toilet Project.