Created
2015-08-13
Created by
agathe
As if there aren’t enough reasons already for Paris being a super-sound financial investment – a gentle but solid upward trend in prices, a strong dollar and mortgage rates in the 2% range – the international accounting firm KMPG just added another reason for why buying in Paris is not only therapeutic for your lifestyle, but good for your pocketbook:

In a publication entitled “Global Cities Investment Monitor 2015” ,the KMPG study shows that Paris is exceeded only by London and Shanghai in global rankings of cities attractive to investors. By contrast, New York is fifth.

The French capital’s rise from eight place in 2014 to third in 2015 is reflected every day in the offices of Just France Sales. We see Americans and other US-dollar-based buyers buying up residential properties at rates not seen since before the Recession. According to the KMPG study, in 2014 36% of overall investment capital in Paris came from North America.

Favorable developments on the capital gains and inheritance issues

And there’s more good news for property buyers: two long-time thorns have now been removed from the sides of non-French buyers who have bought or are thinking of acquiring second homes in France.

The first is that the 15.5% “social security” tax on capital gains has been removed by order of the European Union Court. The Court found that imposing the tax only on non-French owners violated principles of equal treatment, since unlike French taxpayers, foreigners derived no benefit from French social services.

The second change – a major boon in particular to American buyers – is that non-French buyers can opt out of French inheritance laws and pass on property to their heirs as they choose.

This new European Union regulation is effective August 17, 2015. It allows an owner to create a will in his or her own country, and designate that will as the controlling instrument. Heretofore non-resident owners have been obliged to conform to French inheritance laws that create statutory legacies for certain family members, regardless of the legator’s desires. Heretofore the only way to avoid such laws was to pursue the expensive and somewhat cumbersome remedy of creating a special French real estate corporation (SCI) with at last two shareholders.

The eternal allure of Paris

Finally there is the allure of Paris itself, a city that celebrates a rich and variegated history even as it presses ahead toward new frontiers in art and social ideas. Paris is still the most sought-after tourist destination in the world, yet it is constantly evolving. The fabulous Fondation Luis Vuitton museum in Bois de Boulogne, the gorgeously renovated and universally acclaimed Picasso Museum in the Marais, and development of the “Grand Paris Express” rapid transit line are but three examples of Paris’ being in the forefront of a rapidly changing world.

Good for the soul and good for the portfolio

What else is new in Paris? More bike lanes, yet another Métro line, non-polluting buses, a wave of exciting new restaurants with an Asian flair, a bigger and better Paris Plage on the Seine, all this in addition to the usual cultural feast of avant-garde opera, ballet and theatre. The City of Light continues to reinvent itself in in ways that delight the senses, stimulate the intellect and enrich the soul. That Paris can do this and still be good for your portfolio is a miracle few other cities can match.

Created
2015-06-01
Created by
agathe
It’s official: the seemingly interminable renovations of the Picasso Museum in the Marais have indeed terminated, and the museum is now open for business after shutting down five years ago for a total overhaul. The number of works by the 20th century master has been doubled to more than 400. In a new twist, the top floor of the fabulous 17th-century structure home that houses the collection has been dedicated to some 100 works by other artists favored by Picasso, among them Matisse, Miro, Gauguin, Rousseau, Renoir and Braque.

As noted in the Wall Street Journal and numerous other accounts, the Picasso Museum’s reopening signals a distinct new chapter in its 30-year-history. Political squabbles and staff hostility to the former director, the Picasso scholar Anne Baldassari, are now a thing of the past, and the museum has a new president in Laurent Le Bon, who ran the Pompidou’s affiliate museum in Metz. The renovation will enable the display of some works that exceeded the previous building’s ceiling height. Among the new pieces will be plaster models of Picasso’s lover (and mother of Picasso’s daughter) Marie-Thérèse Walter. Judging from the great number of people – some 13,000 - who previewed the renovated structure in September, the Picasso Museum will be a huge draw for tourists.

And that’s not all the big news for the Paris art scene:

In a defiant riposte to critics who say Paris has fallen behind as a leader in avant-garde art, the super-futuristic Louis Vuitton Foundation museum by architect Frank Gehry is now open for visitors in a park-like setting north of Paris. Not surprisingly given the money and talent involved, Gehry’s imaginative design is a dazzler - a thrilling arrangement of soaring glass panels that from an aerial view resemble a series of glassy clouds, or vertical and horizontal kites filled to swelling by a strong breeze. The surface area of the museum is 11,700 square meters, or 126,000 square feet. New York Times writer Joseph Giovanni said the building resembles a “Cubist sailboat.” as-his-vuitton-foundation-opens.html?ref=design. According to the Times, at the October 20 opening ceremony French President François Hollande described it as a “cathedral of light” and a “miracle of intelligence, creativity and technology.”

The just-completed structure – its official name is the Louis Vuitton Foundation - houses the private collection of luxury goods magnate Bernard Arnaut, chief of LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moet-Hennessey), one of the world’s most celebrated art collectors. Arnault got the Ville de Paris’ accord to build the museum on government land (on the site of a former bowling alley in the Jardin d’Acclimation, created by the city in the 19th century as a children’s park). In return the building will be deeded to the city in 50 years. The museum will give public access to one of the greatest private collections on the globe – a good deal for a city whose economy thrives on tourism.

The Picasso Museum is situated in the Marais quartier of Paris at 5, rue de Thorigny (3rd arr., Métro), tel. +33 (0)1 85 56 00 36. It is closed Saturday through Monday. You will find practical information at http://www.museepicassoparis.fr/en/contacts-map/

The Luis Vuitton Foundation is in the Bois de Boulogne (16th arr.) at 8, avenue de la Mahatma Gandhi, tel. +33-1-40.69.96.00. It is open every day except Tuesday. For information on transportation and parking see http://www.fondationlouisvuitton.fr/Informations-pratiques.html.