Boulogne-Billancourt is a wealthy area in the inner south-western suburbs of Paris. With its approximately 121,000 inhabitants (2018), it is the most populous municipality in the Paris urban area after the city of Paris, and one of the most densely populated. Although not a major tourist hub, it is nonetheless worth a visit for its 1930s heritage.
Bordered by the river Seine to the south and west, by the Bois de Boulogne to the north and by the 16th arrondissement of Paris, Boulogne-Billancourt is the most populous municipality in Ile-de-France after Paris 'intramuros'. Its central position on the old East-West road of Versailles, between the Royal Palace of the Louvre is at the origin of its development. Today, it continues to develop thanks to its intermediate position on the north-south axis, between the economic hubs of La Défense and Vélizy-Villacoublay.
For nearly two centuries, Boulogne-Billancourt has been known for its technological innovation, home to the first suspension bridge in 1824, the design of the first automobile gearbox, and the first place outside Paris intramuros to be connected to the Paris metro in 1934. The cultural golden age of Boulogne-Billancourt was undoubtedly the inter-war period, and more precisely that of the 1930s, which results in it being home to a large amount of notable Art Deco architecture from that period. It was also during the first half of the 20th century that Boulogne became the city of aircraft engines and cinema, and saw the establishment of the vast factories of the car manufacturer Renault (on what is now the Ile Seguin), whose primary headquarters are still found in the suburb.
The suburb is primarily served by metro lines(Pont de Sèvres, Billancourt and Marcel Sembat) and (Pont de Saint-Cloud, Jean Jaurès), and is in fare zone 2. Line 10 feels like it belongs in a museum from the Second World War and is quite fun to ride. The new line 15 is scheduled to open in the mid-2020s as part of the Grand Paris Express scheme, and will connect Pont de Sèvres station with the surrounding inner suburbs of Paris.
Parc de Saint-Cloud station on tram line Tis a short walk across the river Seine from Pont de Saint-Cloud metro station, as is Brimborion station from Pont de Sèvres metro station.
Although the RER does not serve the commune directly, the RERserves Issy - Val de Seine station located just across the Seine in the neighbouring commune of Issy.
Two free shuttle bus routes around the commune are provided by the Service Urbain de Boulogne-Billancourt (SUBB), and are adapted for people with disabilities. A map and timetable are provided on the council website.
- 1 Albert Kahn Museum (Musée Albert-Kahn), 10 Rue du Port ( ). The former estate of the Edwardian philanthropist Albert Kahn, consisting of a beautiful botanical garden and a museum of early 20th-century colour film/photography documenting various world cultures and remote tribes. While the museum is closed for renovation until Autumn 2021, the gardens remain open and entry is free on the first weekend of each month.
- 2 Museum of the 1930s (Musée des Années Trente), Espace Landowski, 28 Avenue André Morizet ( ). A municipal museum specializing in the fine arts, decorative arts, and industrial arts of the 1930s
- 3 Marmottan Library (Bibliothèque Marmottan), 7 Place Denfert-Rochereau ( ). Museum library of books from the Napoleonic era
- 4 Paul Belmondo Museum (Musée Paul-Belmondo), 14 Rue de l'Abreuvoir. T-F 14:00-18:00, Sat-Sun 11:00-18:00. Museum dedicated to the sculptor Paul Belmondo
- 5 Parc Edmond de Rothschild, 3 Rue des Victoires. Charming little park and Japanese garden around an old derelict stately home
- 1 Le parcours des années 30 ( , ). Self-guided walking tour of Boulogne-Billancourt's 1930s architectural heritage starting from Porte de Saint-Cloud and ending at Jean Jaurès metro stations.
- 2 La Seine Musicale ( , ). Classical music venue on the Ile Seguin.
|Routes through Boulogne-Billancourt|
|END ←||W E||→ 16th arrondissement → 9th arrondissement|
|END ←||W E||→ 16th arrondissement → 15th arrondissement|
|Rouen ← Giverny ←||NW E||→ Paris|