You never get a second chance to make a first impression. An entryway should exude personality and offer an introduction to the interior beyond; when complimented by the bones of the building, this exterior space is the perfect vehicle for encapsulating the style of that building’s era.
Art Nouveau, one of the most recognizable styles of decoration and architecture, originated in the 1880s-1890s. The name ‘Art Nouveau’ came from an interior design gallery located in Paris; the gallery was ‘The Maison de l-Art Nouveau’ (“House of New Art”). Art Nouveau uses geometric forms, as well as nature-inspired shapes such as stems and flower blossoms, to create a magical and intricate design style.
There were many influences in Art Nouveau, but perhaps most prominent was a mix of decorative and Victorian era arts. The Art Nouveau movement swept through the world of architecture and design, its bold and unique style earning it global recognition.
Some of the most stunning entryways around the world still showcase this incredible decorative style that has withstood the test of time. The below entryways are some of our favourite Art Nouveau-inspired doors – unique, eclectic, and timelessly beautiful.
VILLA MELCHIORRI, PARIS
Designer: Circo Contini, 1903 – 1904
Nothing quite rivals the beauty of this round entryway located in Paris. Look closely; the details are what make this piece so unique. There are many floral decorations carved into the concrete which resemble those of the Bolognese archiect Sironi. The other unique aspect of this entry is the railing; made by Augusto de Paoli, it symbolises the creation of the city-garden.
RUE DU LAC, BRUSSELS
Architect: Léon Delune, 1904
This entryway is located in Brussels. 6 Rue du Lac exhibits a unique curvature in its windows and door. The architect left his personal mark by taking inspiration from his surname, De Lune, which translates as ‘Moon’, and designing the round windows to represent the different phases of the moon.
VILLA PAPPONE, ITALY
Architect: Gregorie Botta, 1912
The entrance canopy of iron and colored glass is the first thing that catches the eye when admiring this entryway. Villa Pappone was built during an era when the skyline of Naples was rapidly changing; old buildings that flanked the city like hills were gradually giving way to modern architecture. The flowing iron railing helps to ground the entry but also complements the carved wooden door and stained glass.
CASA MELA LE PEDRERA, BARCELONA
Architect: Antoni Gaudi, 1906 to 1912
The entry access to Casa Mela Le Pedrera is protected by this stunning iron gate, reflecting the architect’s style that is so prevalent in the curvature of the building. The reasoning behind this iron gate was to allow cars access to the basement garage. This massive gate is now an incredible piece of art that creates restricted access and makes for an entryway worth talking about.
HOTEL CENTRAL, PRAGUE
Architects: Alois Dryak & Bedrich Bendelmayer, 1899-1902
One of the oldest and most beautiful Art Nouveau buildings in Prague was designed by architects Alois Dryák and Bedrich Bendelmayer and completed in 1899. The gorgeous Art Nouveau details on the facade are simply breathtaking; the lamps, colors, and awning bring this entryway together.
LAVIROTTE BUILDING, PARIS
Architect: Jules Lavirotte, 1909
This extravagant doorway is the centerpiece of the building; framed with statues of Adam and Eve and a woman’s head (the wife of architect Lavirotte), it boasts some incredible craftsmanship. The doors are decorated with wrought iron lizards and the windows on the main floor are richly sculptured. The upper floors, which are faced with ceramic tiles, feature lavish sculptural decoration, animal themes, curved windows, curling wrought iron railings, and picturesque balconies. Some observers claim to have also identified many erotic elements in the facade. This entryway is a never-ending story of hidden secrets.