Brentano's in Paris set to re-open

<p>Brentano&#39;s &#39;American&#39; bookshop in central Paris should re-open before the end of next week, following its last-minute rescue last autumn from liquidation and a full renovation. The store&#39;s former director Chantal Bodez will run the book section.<br /><br />The emblematic store at 37 avenue de l&#39;Op&eacute;ra, which stopped trading after 113 years in June, will bring in a &quot;new concept&quot;, according to its website. The lease and brand of the American bookshop were taken over by Iranian-born Farokh Sharifi, who owns stationery, pictures and framing retailer Images de Demain in Montpellier.<br /><br />The American bookshop closed down after the bank BNP Paribas nearly tripled the annual rent from &euro;75,000 to &euro;206,000 for the 200 sq metres that face on to the avenue. Sharifi was unable to negotiate a lower rent, but aims to increase profitability by diversifying stationery and pictures.<br /><br />The new lines are &quot;products that will attract customers in this highly touristic area,&quot; Sharifi&#39;s wife Armelle said. About 35% to 40% of the display space will be devoted to English-language books, including many new titles and travel guides.<br /><br />Bodez will be assisted by a qualified bookseller, who has still to be recruited. Other posts to be filled are salespeople, cashiers and a receptionist, all of whom must be bilingual and preferably have some knowledge of Japanese. Bodez was quoted as saying when the store closed : &quot;The avenue de l&#39;Op&eacute;ra has become Japanese, (whereas) in the past it was American.&quot;<br /><br />Bodez took over as director from her father at the beginning of the 1980s.</p><p>Update: Brentano&#39;s now says it will open this week (beginning 8th Feb). </p>