Museum Architecture: Musée Dobrée

The Musée Dobrée, nestled in Nantes within the picturesque Loire Valley of France, stands as a testament to historical and architectural splendor. This museum, a cultural gem, recently underwent a significant renovation, with a primary focus on modernizing its envelope—one of the key reasons for its initial closure by the local government. This case study exemplifies Maison Janneau’s prowess in managing light commercial projects, blending historical preservation with contemporary innovation.

(c) Alessandro Brotto


The Musée Dobrée is an architectural marvel, comprising three distinct buildings: a neo-medieval palace, a 15th-century manor house, and two extensions from the 20th and 21st centuries. These structures are harmoniously set amidst an Anglo-Norman garden, creating a unique and eclectic ensemble. The museum is home to a diverse collection of artifacts, including those amassed by Thomas Dobrée, the eminent Nantes collector and founder of the institution. Spanning four floors and 36 rooms, the museum’s impressive 2400 square meters house over 130,000 objects, each narrating a story of its own.


In 2016, the ambitious renovation of the Musée Dobrée was set in motion, spearheaded by a team of renowned architects and designers: Atelier Novembre (architect), Atelier Moabi (landscape architect), and Ateliers Adeline Rispal (scenographer). Maison Janneau played a pivotal role in this transformation, particularly in the renovation of the windows in the neo-medieval palace where the majority of the collections are displayed. The primary challenge was to meticulously execute the intricate assemblies while incorporating fireproof solutions, ensuring both aesthetic and functional excellence.


The project involved the installation of 33 steel windows, 10 of which were designed to be fireproof. The chosen solution for this project was the Eiffel collection, renowned for its superior quality materials and thermally broken jamb and sash. The windows were finished with a matte grey 7022 paint, which carries a 10-year warranty in France, ensuring durability and longevity. To achieve a sleek and contemporary appearance, the hardware and accessories were painted black, complementing the overall aesthetic. The largest window assembly in this project spanned over 10 feet, showcasing our capability to handle substantial and complex installations.

The successful completion of the Musée Dobrée project underscores our commitment to quality and innovation in window manufacturing. This endeavor not only revitalized a historic landmark but also demonstrated our ability to seamlessly integrate modern solutions into traditional settings. Our involvement in such a prestigious project reinforces our position as a leader in the high-end residential market, catering to the discerning tastes of luxury architects, interior designers, and builders.

Final results

In May 2024, Maison Janneau had the pleasure of hosting a select group of architects, builders, and a journalist in Paris and Nantes, providing them with an exclusive opportunity to explore the architectural wonders of our regions, our workshops, and our esteemed projects. The Musée Dobrée was a highlight of this visit, allowing our guests to witness firsthand the intricacies and craftsmanship involved in the renovation.

We invite you to delve deeper into the Musée Dobrée project through the video below, which offers a glimpse into the 2024 Window Design Trip. This video provides a comprehensive overview of the project, highlighting the meticulous attention to detail and the collaborative efforts that brought this vision to life. At Maison Janneau, we take pride in our ability to transform spaces with our bespoke window solutions, ensuring that each project we undertake is a testament to our dedication to excellence and innovation.

In conclusion, the Musée Dobrée renovation stands as a shining example of our expertise in handling light commercial projects, blending historical charm with modern sophistication. As we continue to expand our presence in the United States, we remain committed to delivering the highest quality products and services to our esteemed clientele. Thank you for considering Maison Janneau for your next architectural endeavor.

Case studies

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