The story of a dream
"The idea for an ambitious, large-scale museum dedicated to Charlie Chaplin and his life’s work came about in the year 2000, when Swiss architect Philippe Meylan and Quebecois curator, film buff and Chaplin aficionado Yves Durand first met. The project was brought to life by a dedicated group, made up of business people, artists and key local players, as well as teams of architects, engineers and designers, working together with the Chaplin Foundation.
Chaplin’s World is the product of ten years of work: market and feasibility studies, site renovation, and scenic design, as well as consultation and co-operation with Swiss authorities and stakeholders. This unique project brought together financial and institutional partners such as the Canton of Vaud, local authorities, cultural and tourist organisations, and businesses on the Swiss Riviera."
A project with solid foundations
"Chaplin’s World is now established as an exemplary cultural, touristic and economic project in the region, through the support of the following bodies: The Chaplin Museum Foundation, The Chaplin Office (the artist’s legal heirs), Roy Export Company Establishment and Bubbles Incorporated SA (holders of the rights associated with Chaplin’s image and likeness), and Chaplin Museum Development and Nestlé Switzerland (the project’s development sponsor).
It also received the support of the Canton de Vaud, with the extension of an economic development loan of CHF10m (€8.2m), which is backed by ten neighbouring municipalities. Their commitment demonstrates the project’s economic, cultural and touristic significance."
A pivotal meeting
"The project picked up pace in 2008 when the Luxembourg-based capital investment, asset management and financial advice company Genii Capital came on board, bringing its expertise and the financial support necessary to get the project off the ground.
In 2011, the project’s developers, under the umbrella of Chaplin Museum Development, approached a key player in the European leisure industry, Compagnie des Alpes (CDA), renowned for their expertise in managing and operating museums and amusement parks across the world. In the same year, they also approached Grévin, for its artistic and scenic designs.
All of these stakeholders ambitioned to bring to life the priceless cultural and cinematic legacy of Charlie Chaplin, and contribute to the touristic and cultural appeal of the Swiss Riviera by creating a truly unique site for culture and entertainment.
A partnership agreement was signed on January 31, 2014, between Compagnie des Alpes and Domaine du Manoir de Ban (Genii Capital and Chaplin Museum Development - CMD) for the purpose of launching the Chaplin’s World Museum."
Creating an exceptional site
It took more than two years of construction work to bring back the Manoir de Ban and its magnificent park to their former glory. The conservation and restoration of this authentic private home was a key motivating factor for all parties involved in this project. More than 200 builders, workers and craftsmen laboured industriously to complete the renovation. They encountered significant architectural and integration challenges during the various stages of the project: the renovation and transformation of the Manoir de Ban and its annexes, the construction of a new building of Hollywood proportions, the development of a car park (cleverly hidden between the garden and the forest), and the park’s landscaping.
Bringing together culture and entertainment
"Chaplin’s World By Grévin is a great example of what Grévin is capable of: creating a unique design, bringing together culture and entertainment. Their playful and innovative scenic design allows for an immersive exploration of Chaplin’s life and work.
More than 30 wax figures created by Grévin decorate Chaplin’s World: the Tramp, Oona and Chaplin, politicians like Gandhi and Churchill, artists who crossed paths with Chaplin, like Paulette Godard, Buster Keaton and Sophia Loren, and others who were inspired by Chaplin’s cinematic work or his iconic character, like Roberto Benigni, Federico Fellini and Michael Jackson."
They created Chaplin’s World
"The Genii Capital consortium and Chaplin Museum Development (CMD) chose Compagnie des Alpes and Grévin to operate the site, a property of the consortium, under the brand Chaplin’s World.
Compagnie des Alpes and Grévin are responsible for the project’s art direction (specifically through the creation of 30 wax figures) and for the sets and decor, in collaboration with renowned scenic designer François Confino.
The company Domaine du Manoir de Ban (DMdB), a collaboration between Genii Capital and Chaplin Museum Development, is responsible for the renovation of the Manoir and the construction of the new museum. Construction work was contracted to the Swiss company HRS Real Estate."
"Genii Capital is a capital investment, asset management and financial consultancy company based in Luxembourg and operating in such fields as real estate, technology, automobile and energy. It acquired the Domaine du Manoir du Ban in 2008. It raised the necessary funds for the renovation and construction and oversaw project's successful completion.
See www.genii-capital.com for more information."
Domaine du Manoir de Ban SA (DMdB)
"The public limited company Domaine du Manoir de Ban SA was founded in 2008 by the project’s initiators, Swiss architect Philippe Meylan and Canadian museographer Yves Durand (who were partners in Chaplin Museum Development), along with Genii Capital, a capital investment company.
Chaplin Museum Development has spent the last 16 years nurturing the project, with funds and valuable advice from Genii Capital, who joined in 2008. Domaine du Manoir de Ban SA acquired the estate as soon as the company was founded, and brought Chaplin’s World to fruition in April 2016.
See www.manoirdeban.com for more information."
Chaplin Museum Development
"Founded by architect Philippe Meylan and museographer Yves Durand, the company Chaplin Museum Development oversaw the project from the start, in 2000. Chaplin Museum Development instigated the original museum concept and undertook the studies, strategies and decision-making, working with Chaplin’s heirs and the partners, both public and private, involved in Chaplin’s World by Grévin. Roy Export and Bubbles Incorporated, who own the copyright to Chaplin’s image, films and archives, gave the Chaplin Museum Development unparalleled access to the estate of the artist and his family.
See www.chaplinmuseum.com for more information."
The Charlie Chaplin Museum Foundation
"The Charlie Chaplin Museum Foundation is dedicated to promoting the understanding, conservation and appreciation of Chaplin’s legacy, in line with Chaplin’s own humanist and ethical values.
Created in 2001, the Foundation strives to acquire artefacts of Charlie Chaplin’s legacy from his heirs and throughout the world, for the purpose of expanding the scope of Chaplin’s World By Grévin."
Artistic excellence with a French touch
"Going back 133 years, the Grévin brand is steeped in history. Renowned for its famous museum in Paris, this iconic name in the history of wax museums in France went international in 2013.
“Imagining new Grévin worlds is always exciting. We are very receptive to our clients and partners’ wishes and provide them with tailor-made services that make the most of our unique expertise: creating life-like wax models set in sumptuous surroundings.”
Béatrice de Reyniès, Chair of Grévin.
A benchmark name in the entertainment industry, Grévin designs, develops and produces playful, interactive, immersive props and sets allowing visitors to explore a truly exceptional dream-like world of illusion. Grévin’s new generation museums, present across four continents, offer a unique educational and entertainment experience, through its unrivalled artistic expertise in areas such as sculpture, painting, costume design and hairdressing.
Grévin operates in Paris, Montréal, Prague, Seoul and Vevey.
Grévin is a brand of Compagnie des Alpes, leader in the European leisure industry since 1989.
For more information visit www.grevin.com
A wholly-owned owned subsidiary of Compagnie des Alpes, BY Grévin SA is responsible for operating and marketing Chaplin’s World. The company, headed by Jean-Pierre Pigeon, has 22 employees.
La Compagnie des Alpes
"A leader in the European leisure industry with 25 years of experience, Compagnie des Alpes gained its undisputed reputation for excellence in the industry by making performance its number one priority. It boasts unrivalled expertise in producing outstanding mass entertainment and leisure facilities, both in France and internationally.
From the largest ski resorts in the Alps to world famous amusement parks, the company’s wide variety of offerings is based on unparalleled historical and technological expertise that creates value for local regions.
Our areas of expertise: ski resorts, leisure and amusement parks, and indoor attractions
Find out more about La Compagnie des Alpes.
Partners of the museum project
"For this project, the Swiss general contractor HRS Real Estate and the Confino scenic design studio collaborated with several experts in a variety of fields, such as interior design, exhibition design, theatre, multimedia (sound, video, lighting), special effects and virtual reality. The unusually complex, large scale-construction works were made possible by the architectural firm IttenBrechbül, the engineering firm Amstein, Walthert & TBM, the landscape design company In-Situ, the scenic design workshop Bodino, the multimedia companies Inytium and ETF, the audio-visual production company Lobster Films, and various consultancy firms, building contractors, workers and craftsmen.
Access to the Chaplin estate was established in close collaboration with the Montreux Archives (custodian of Chaplin’s paper archives), the Musée de l’Elysée (custodian of a collection of unique photographs originating from Chaplin’s Studios), and the Bologna Film Archives (which has been digitalising the entire family collection of Charlie Chaplin works for the past ten years)."
Development partners of the museum project
"The Canton de Vaud’s Department of Finance and Sports (DECS)
The ten municipalities that make up the Swiss Riviera
The Chaplin family, via the companies Roy Export.
The Banque cantonale de Fribourg, the project's financial partner"