Getaway to Deauville

Deauville established itself in 1912 - with the inauguration of the Hotel Normandy and the casino - as the place where artists and lovers of shows and music moved in the summer. In July 1914, Comœdia, the famous art magazine of the time, commissioned Guillaume Apollinaire, a well-known art critic, and André Rouveyre, a painter and caricaturist, to cover Deauville's third major cultural season.

When they arrived in Deauville on July 25, they stayed at the Hôtel de l'Europe (now the Hôtel Continental).
Apollinaire joined the gaming tables, strolled along the beach and lingered on the terrace of La Potinière. The café where everyone shows up and meets.
The eye on the lookout Apollinaire attends and comments on amazing scenes:
" On the morning of the 31st, a marvelous negro dressed in a simarre of changing colors, silver blue and pink, rode his bicycle through the streets of Deauville. We saw him going towards the beach, riding along the rue Gontaut-Biron. He finally reached the sea where it seemed to us that he was sinking. Soon we saw only the green turban of water which merged with the bitter wave ".

On July 31, the general mobilization is proclaimed. Apollinaire and Rouveyre return to Paris as quickly as possible.
From this stay, there remain correspondences and several poems included in Calligrammes.
All the details of the stay in Deauville are developed in a text written on October 5, 1914 and published under the title Souvenirs de la grande guerre (Memories of the Great War), but also in La Fête manquée (The Missed Party), a chronicle written for Comœdia on August 1, 1914, published only on August 1, 1920. The latter text was reused by Apollinaire at the beginning of a novel in the making, La Femme blanche des Hohenzollern. This was the poet's last foray into the rituals of the resort before the war made him a soldier in the French army in December 1914... Guillaume Apollinaire died of Spanish flu on November 9, 1918, at the age of 38, two days before the armistice.


Contact us:
+33 (0)2 31 14 40 00

Our tourist information offices :

Résidence de l'Horloge
Quai de l'Impératrice Eugénie
14800 Deauville
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Place Jean Mermoz
14640 Villers-sur-Mer
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32 bis avenue Michel d'Ornano
14910 Blonville-sur-Mer
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40 rue du Général Leclerc
14113 Villerville
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20 Place Lemercier
14800 Touques
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Promenade Louis Delamare
(behind the first-aid post)
14800 Tourgéville
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