Hauts de France

Nord-Pas de Calais: Lille and Roubaix.

by Bert Schwarz

Lille is the ideal starting point to discover the lesser-known highlights of the Nord-Pas de Calais region, now part of the Hauts de France department. In addition to places like Amiens, Arras or Villeneuve d'Ascq, Roubaix was the right destination for us to visit La Piscine - also due to the weather.


Story, Camera, Editor : Bert Schwarz

© travel-magazine TV 2016

Each of these places has its own attraction worth seeing and is therefore ideal for day trips. Above all, it is Lille, whose inner city looks older than it is, because it was almost completely rebuilt after the First World War - with modern materials, but in appearance as before its destruction.

Then there is Roubaix with La Piscine, for example, a unique Gallierie that used to be a bathing establishment. The gallery shows a breathtaking selection of sculptures and paintings, illuminated by an enormous sunset painted on glass. Also worth a visit is the Church of Saint Martin, built in 1511, where you can successfully dislocate your neck.

La Piscine © Bert Schwarz

The André Diligent Pool - Museum of Art and Industry, which opened its doors on 21 October 2001, is located on the site of the former Art Deco Swimming Pool, built between 1927 and 1932 on the initiative of Mayor Jean-Baptiste Lebas according to the plans of the Lille architect Albert Baert (1863-1951). The swimming pool, now part of the 20th century cultural heritage, offered a high quality sports and hygiene service with an innovative social function, which presented the image of a communal working class team and was able to promote exceptional and prestigious projects.

The museum's programme is at the heart of the museum concept, which focuses on social and economic life. Jean-Paul Philippon's project uses this object to transform the central place, the basin, into a magical space. A large water level remains, which can be adapted to all scenarios.