House of All Nations

During the 1920s, the House of all Nations was probably the most well known bordello in the world.  The skinny, eight story building, located at 12 rue Chabanais, was a favorite destination for foreign dignitaries, royalty and other notables looking for the exotic and unusual. In fact Bertie, the Prince of Wales who would become King of England, had his own room reserved just for him.

The entrance hall looked like a primitive cave with bare stone, but each bedroom was lavishly decorated, each with its own theme such as Indian, Moorish, Japanese, Musketeers, African and even one that had a pirate motif.  There was also the “Room of Mirrors” and a torture chamber for those who enjoyed pain.  Toulouse-Lautrec, who spent much time in, and drew his inspiration from, Paris brothels, offered the House of All Nations 16 paintings depicting male and female centaurs for the Pompeii room.  The brothel also had numerous theaters where audiences could watch exotic sex acts being performed.

When Bob and Muriel were performing at the le Boeuf sur le Toit in 1925, Madame Estelle, the manager of the House of All Nations, was a frequent customer and became a good friend.  The Madame invited them to visit her brothel, which they did – numerous times.