Hugo Marchand talks to France.fr about his favourite places in his home town of Nantes. The arty and trendy Hangar à Bananes, the historic districts, the Lieu Unique... We follow the star dancer of the Paris Opera as he performs a pas de deux in the heart of the city of the Dukes of Brittany.
Hugo Marchand was born in Nantes, lived there for part of his youth and visits whenever his schedule permits. The prima ballerina of the Paris Opera is happy to act as an ambassador for his home town, inviting us to discover it through his favourite addresses and anecdotes.
It's a very cultural and historic city, and he admires the tufa stone buildings once built by shipowners on the Ile de Nantes in the centre of the city, but it's also an industrial city, with the harbourfront now developed for leisure activities.
It's here, on the former wasteland of the Hangars à Bananes, that you'll find a succession of places to live and go out, along the quays and the Buren rings: restaurants, art galleries, bars, lounges and discotheques, all very popular with the people of Nantes.
His favourite unusual place? Le Lieu Unique, a building whose glass wall was closed at the turn of the millennium, inviting residents to lock up a favourite object, souvenirs, flowers... before reopening in 2100. Hugo Marchand, aged 6 at the time, recalls with amusement that he refused to deliver his cuddly toys there!
The Royal Deluxe troupe's huge elephant
An unforgettable memory? The moment when Royal Deluxe's huge elephant arrived on the Cours des 50 otages, "it was really impressive to see this huge robot arrive, grandiose ".
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Le Grand Éléphant ne passera pas les fêtes tout seul ! 🐘 Un troupeau de 25 statues d'éléphants sera exposé sous les Nefs, afin de sensibiliser le public à la sauvegarde des éléphants. #NantesenFêtes #Nantes #NantesPassion #Nantesfr #elephantparade #Noelauxnefs #IledeNantes
Nantes' most iconic landmark? A very beautiful place, the Cathedral, witness to a multi-centenary heritage, also built in tufa stone and recently renovated. It's this mix of history and industry that makes the city so rich and appeals so much to Hugo Marchand.
Escapade à Pornic
A place to get away from it all? Nantes is close to the ocean, so we're lucky to be able to get to Pornic quickly, in the Golfe du Morbihan", a place where the dancer spent his childhood and teenage summers at the family home. It's the colours, the smells, the heather, the wind and the fishing...".
What are we waiting for to discover Nantes and the surrounding area in the footsteps of Hugo Marchand?