On May 6, 1889, the Eiffel Tower opened its doors to public and became the icon par excellence of the
French capital. It was built as part of the World’s Fair of the Universal Exposition and in commemoration of the centenary of the French Revolution.
The Eiffel Tower is a landmark of modern architecture just 6 hours and 25 minutes from Barcelona by Renfe-SNCF en Coopération, but do you know all curiosities this building enshroud?
1. FOR 41 YEARS IT WAS THE TALLEST BUILDING IN THE WORLD
With its 300 meters high, it was the
in the world since its construction
, year in which the Chrysler Building in New York snatched the position. However, it remains the tallest structure in Paris, the tallest fifth in France and adding the antenna at the top, it surpasses the height of the Chrysler Building reaching 324 meters.
2. IT WAS NOT SUPPOSED TO BE PERMANENT
At the beginning, the Eiffel Tower was intended to be destroyed twenty years after the
Universal Exposition. However, in 1900 the French Navy added a radio antenna at the highest point that saved it from destruction. During the Nazi occupation of Paris (1940-44) the antenna was used to broadcast German television.
3. THE EIFFEL TOWER COULD HAD BEEN A RENOWNED SYMBOL IN OTHER EUROPEAN CITIES
The Project was presented in many cities but was rejected by all of them. Actually, Gustave Eiffel was thinking in Barcelona when he designed it, but the Catalan capital did not approve its construction due to lack of adaptation to local aesthetic.
There are currently 17 reproductions of the Tower all over the world, being the replica of Las Vegas the largest (165 meters) and the one in Michigan the smallest (3 meters).
4. GUSTAVE EIFFEL WAS NOT HIS REAL NAME
The Eiffel family was originally from
Germany and their last name was Bönickhause, but the French were unable to pronounce it. Gustave officially changed his surname in 1880, nine years before the opening of the Tower.
5. GUSTAVE EIFFEL WAS NAMED BUILDER OF THE EIFFEL TOWER
Maurice Koechlin, Émile Nouguier and Stephen Sauvestre - Wikimedia Commons
The original design project came from Maurice Koechlin y Émile Nouguier, which was reviewed and improved by Stephen Sauvestre.
6. THE TOWER CHANGES COLOR EVERY 5 YEARS
Every seven years, the Tower is painted with 60 tons of paint to prevent corrosion. That is why it has changed color several times. The new tonality is decided by visitors through voting on the first floor.
7. IT IS THE FOURTH MOST VISITED MONUMENT
It is the fourth most visited monument in the world surpassing the 7 million visits.
8. THE EIFFEL TOWER DOES NOT ALWAYS HAVE THE SAME SIZE
In summer the tower is 18 centimeters taller than in winter due to thermal expansion of metal.
9. ICE SKATING IS OFFERED IN WINTER
Ice skating - www.toureiffel.paris
In 2005 an ice rink was installed on the first floor for the first time. It measures 190 square meters and skates can be rented there.
10. FOR FIVE YEARS IT ADVERTISED A CAR BRAND
During the period 1925-1934 an ad for Citroën was installed in each face of the Tower, and became the largest neon sign worldwide.