The biggest gold reserve in France is in the middle of Paris and no one knows it

It is in the heart of the capital that the largest quantity of gold in the country is stored.

The biggest gold reserve in France is in the middle of Paris and no one knows it

It is in the heart of the capital that the largest quantity of gold in the country is stored. Every year, millions of people pass by without knowing it.

It's a myth that still inspires dreams, a timeless fascination. Talking about gold feeds the collective imagination and creates many fantasies. The most precious metal is still highly sought after. Owning it can allow you to earn a lot of money since 10 grams are exchanged for €650.

In France, several regions are still gold resources. In mainland France, the Pyrenees, the Cévennes but, above all, the Armorican massif are the main territories still suppliers of this metal. Far from France, but still in France, it is Guyana which is a real… gold mine, where extraction operations still exist.

However, it is not on the other side of the Atlantic that the largest reserve of mined gold exists, but in mainland France... right in Paris! A stone's throw from the Elysée Palace and the Louvre Museum lie 2,436 tons of gold. Valuation of the treasure: 146 billion euros! The loot is enormous, colossal even.

However, its location is public: Hôtel de Toulouse, 1 Rue de la Vrillière, 75001 Paris. In its postal aspect, the place seems unknown. It is actually the headquarters of the Bank of France.

28 meters underground, beneath a water table, lies a room that only a handful of people have access to: France's gold reserve. It is a space as big as a football field, with 720 pillars supporting a 6m50 thick frame, made of limestone, concrete and steel, as shown in a TV report in 1950.

To access these golden meanders, you must pass turrets, take narrow corridors which may be blocked and use elevators. Each time visitors are presented with imposing armored doors, one of which weighs 7 tons and rotates slowly.

100m long corridors leading to equally protected rooms are then revealed, containing the various ingots of 12.5kg each. The carefully guarded gold belongs to France, but also to other countries, whose identities are not known.

Don't think you can access this room for heritage days. Those who can are handpicked. Only the Governor of the Bank of France, his seven colleagues from the gold department, and five to ten other people can go down there. Among which, inevitably, the President of the Republic, very probably the Minister of the Economy, or even the Minister of Public Accounts.

This is how on February 11, 2019, Gérald Darmanin, then in Bercy, went there… with his mother, as recounted by Anita Hausser and Jean-François Gintzburger in the book Gérald Darmanin, Les secrets d’un ambitious . The man who has since become Minister of the Interior then discovered a financial reserve... less important than the fortune of Bernard Arnault, the richest man in France.

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