Fournaise House – Chatou. “Alphonse Fournaise, born into a family of bargemen and boatbuilders, bought a modest house on the island (La Seine forms a long island here) from one of his cousins in 1857. With the help of his daughter, Alphonsine, he also developed a boat building business, boathouse rental and the organization of river festivals which rapidly became famous. The Fournaise House and restaurant became a meeting place for writers, painters and political and financial celebrities. Among those guests.... the name of Maupassant and Renoir will always remain engraved in our memories. Renoir painted thirty masterpieces here including the famous "Le déjeuner des Canotiers". At the end of the XIXth century, the new craze for bicycling put an end to the era of boating on the Seine and to a decline in the clientele which brought about the closure of the restaurant in 1905. When Alphonsine died in 1937 the house was divided into thirteen rented appartments and detoriorated rapidly. The Chatou municipality purchased the building in 1979 so that it could be completely renovated. In 1982 the facades were listed.... The restaurant.... reopened in 1990 and since 1992 the.... building houses a memorial museum." This text is taken from an information display on the side of the building. The balcony and its cover are still/again the same as on Renoir's painting "Le déjeuner des Canotiers".