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The Eiffel Tower

Metro : Bir-Hakeim or Trocadéro. 9h30 - 22h30.

eiffel tower history and description
Thanks to the visual lightness of its structure one needs reminding of the tower’s monumental proportions and staggering weight, 7000 tonnes of metal with a surface area sufficient in size to mean it is constantly being repainted. Its architect Gustave Eiffel was heard to exclaim during the Universal Exposition of 1937, “I’ve become jealous of my own tower, it is now more famous than I am!” However, from its birth it was clear that its function conditioned its form, suggesting that it could have been the wind itself that was responsible for the design.
Since then more than 150 million people have visited the Lady of Iron, the tower becoming as representative of the City of Lights as any other monument. An astounding feat considering just how recently she appears in the city’s history.
Gustave Eiffel had already made a name for himself in designing the Statue of Liberty. The conception of his famous tower in 1889 was an architectural revelation as at the time the 300m arrow was the tallest man-made structure in the world, its design reminiscent of spectacular projects of times long past such as the Egyptian’s pyramids.
Not that such a grand or ambitious plan was universally applauded at the time, quite the opposite. Its very existence was threatened from day one by many Parisians. Some contented themselves with ridicule, naming it the “giant metallic carrot”. Others were more militant, committing themselves to its ultimate destruction. The writer Guy de Maupassant humourously claimed to visit each day in order to take refuge in the one Parisian location where the tower couldn’t be seen.
Despite such attitudes the tower fascinated the crowds at its inauguration during the Universal Exposition of 1889. More than two million finding their curiosity too strong to resist the urge to climb the towers’ three levels and experience the highest view of Paris that ever existed, a view that even took the Chartres Cathedral on a clear day.
Like the pavilions constructed for the expositions of the day the tower was only ever intended to last a few decades before being dismantled. During the 1920’s, with the tower’s lease coming to an end, Eiffel took up the fight to save his masterpiece. Curiously though, the tower was saved not through its status as the most successful work of steel from the industrial revolution. It was rather its more practical role as a giant antenna that rendered it indispensable and saved it from destruction. From the First World War onwards it proved to be a valuable asset in the domain of radio transmissions. The tower was involved in the interception of numerous enemy messages during that war, allegedly being responsible for foiling the work of the infamous spy Mata-Hari.
Today more than ever the Eiffel Tower represents a vibrant and festive Paris. Since celebrations to mark the millennium it has been adorned with thousands of silver lights, which bring it alive for ten minutes at the start of each nighttime hour. This tower of lights truly the centerpiece for the city of lights.


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Absolutely not the same place than Studio Marais , rue du Bourg-Tibourg,
Completely the other side of Paris from Studio Sicile , rue du Roi de Sicile.