The plot originally dates from 1582, but nothing remains on site today from this period. As these houses passed down through the generations, successive owners would rebuild according to the fashions of the day, and the building we see today is from the 18th century.
The house remained a country escape until 1778 when it was sold to three men, Jean-Baptiste Servat, Charles-Nicolas Rolland, and Samson-Nicolas Lenoir, from a new breed of speculator stock. It was Lenoir, an ambitious architect, in particular who saw money making potential of the land, and he installed a metalworks factory in the gardens. A site of aristocratic idling became one of proletarian toil.
His next act though was more interesting, and one that has left a trace today. He chose to pierce a street right through the heart of the chateau – a very revolutionary pre-revolutionary act!
Although named Rue Bayen today, this street was originally baptised Rue de l'Arcade, a name seemingly designed to attract the urban flaneurs who were starting to appear. The revolution that followed brought further rapid change to the area, although this house remained outside of the city until 1860. 19th and 20th century urbanisation saw the gardens disappear (although two or three small patches still remain) and today it is difficult to imagine that there was ever a country house here at all.
An interesting thought as you walk through what must have once been the entrance to the property!