Fodor's Expert Review Ensemble Conventuel des Jacobins
An extraordinary structure built in the 1230s for the Dominicans (renamed Jacobins in 1216 for their Parisian base in Rue St-Jacques), this church is dominated by a single row of seven columns running the length of the nave. The easternmost column (on the far right) is one of the finest examples of palm-tree vaulting ever erected, the much-celebrated Palmier des Jacobins, a major masterpiece of Gothic art. Fanning out overhead, its 22 ribs support the entire apse. The original refectory site is used for temporary art exhibitions. The cloister is one of the city's aesthetic and acoustical gems, and in summer hosts piano and early music concerts.