This extraordinary and highly imaginative chair was originally designed for Edward VII, the Prince of Wales and later King of England, during his youthful escapades in Paris. Made to measure by the prominent (yet discrete) cabinetmaker Louis Soubrier in 1890, the siège d'amour
, or "seat of love," was delivered to the Parisian bordello Le Chabanais for the future king's personal use. The design allowed the infamous playboy prince to amuse himself in numerous ways, including with two ladies at the same time. While the original chair used by the prince is now owned by the great-grandson of the original 19th-century maker, the present example is one of just three known based on the original design. Another example can be found on display at the Museum of Sex in Prague.
Bordellos were legalized in France in 1802, but it wasn't until 1878 that one of high standing, Le Chabanais, was opened. One of the great bordellos of fin-de-siècle Paris, Le Chabanais was renowned for its extravagance. The bedrooms were lavishly decorated in their own exotic styles, including the Turkish Chamber, Pompeii Room and Japanese Salon. Many foreign dignitaries visited this famed tourist landmark, the future King Edward VII among them. This siège d'amour
is an extraordinary relic of this alluring history.
78" length x 28 1/2" wide x 64" highClick here to view a video of this item.