Once known as “La ville noire”, or “black city”, Saint Etienne is reinventing itself as a centre for innovation and design. After a period of decline, the “city of a thousand patents” is shedding its reputation as a grimy industrial city and re-emerging as a creative and inventive hub with much to offer.
Beautiful and modern urban space and building restoration projects have added to the city’s appeal as a great place to settle down in the Rhône-Alpes region.
The story of Saint-Étienne is closely tied to its love of football. Forty years ago on 12 May 1976, the whole of France watched on as AS Saint-Étienne (ASSE) won the European Cup final in Glasgow. Now, in preparation for Euro 2016, a vast amount has been invested to renovate Stade Geoffroy Guichard, increase its capacity to 41,677 and bring back memories of those glory days of old.
The Stadium: Stade Geoffroy Guichard
14 June 21:00
Portugal vs Iceland – Group F
17 June 18:00
Czech Republic vs Croatia – Group D
20 June 21:00
Slovakia vs England – Group B
25 June 15:00
Round of 16 – RA vs RC
Saint-Étienne initially failed to make the selection as a Euro 2016 host city in 2011, but the iron determination of the town’s mayor, and a lot of luck turned things around. Strasbourg had to withdraw due to an internal crisis at the club, Nancy dropped out because of financial problems, and as a result, the renovated and extended Chaudron (Cauldron)—as the stadium is known locally—was added to the list of host cities.
Meet new faces at the Saint-Étienne Fan Zone in François Mitterrand Park or in the bright and friendly town centre, where a “Saint-Étienne welcomes Europe” banner marks out the special Fan Village.
- City Population: 178,530
- Region: Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
- Stadium: Stade Geoffroy Guichard
- Local Team: AS Saint-Étienne (ASSE)
- Capacity: 41,677
- First Match: 14 June 21:00
- Fan Zone: Parc François-Mitterrand
Where to go when you’re not watching a game
LE CHAUDRON VERT**
THE official ASSE bar/restaurant is just a five minute walk from the “Chaudron”. Experience the atmosphere of the game from the comfort of the bar without forking out on a ticket.
23 rue des Trois-Glorieuses, 42000 Saint Etienne
An ideal place for pre-match, match and après-match. Sit out on the terrace or watch from the counter inside. You’ll find a warm welcome in this café located in the centre of Saint-Étienne.
CAFÉ JEAN JAURÈS
Comfortable bar and terrace to watch the beautiful game and celebrate team wins. Located on Place Jean Jaurès.
19 place Jean Jaurès, 42000 Saint Etienne
LE MÉLIÈS CAFÉ
For film buffs, the bar in Le Meliès Café provides some welcome calm. The large sunny terrace is a winner for pre-match preparations or for après-match drinks.
1,000 sq. m club with original light show, bar and outside terrace area with pool. Enjoy match celebrations or take a dip in the pool between two fixtures. Located at La Talaudiere close to the outskirts of Saint-Étienne.
Things to do in and around Saint-Étienne
La Mine: burn any nervous energy accumulated during the day’s matches at this well-known Saint-Étienne nightspot. 2 cours Jobin Bouchard, 42000 St-Étienne
Club In Box: Chic vintage club playing some of the best music around. 25 rue Jean Claude Tissot, 42000 St-Étienne
Rent a car or jump on a bus or regional train (TER) and head for the Pilat regional natural park.
If the heat becomes too much, you can always have a swim in the open-air pool.