Louvre Museum

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The place

A central landmark of Paris, France, it is located on the Right Bank of the Seine in the 1st arrondissement (district). Nearly 35,000 objects from prehistory to the 19th century are exhibited over an area of 60,600 square metres (652,300 square feet). With more than 8 million visitors each year, the Louvre is the world's most visited museum.

The museum opened on 10 August 1793 with an exhibition of 537 paintings, the majority of the works being royal and confiscated church property.

By 1874, the Louvre Palace had achieved its present form of an almost rectangular structure with the Sully Wing to the east containing the square Cour Carrée and the oldest parts of the Louvre; and two wings which wrap the Cour Napoléon, the Richelieu Wing to the north and the Denon Wing, which borders the Seine to the south.

In 1983, French President François Mitterrand proposed, as one of the Grands Projets of François Mitterrand the Grand Louvre plan to renovate the building and relocate the Finance Ministry, allowing displays throughout the building. Architect I. M. Pei was awarded the project and proposed a glass pyramid to stand over a new entrance in the main court, the Cour Napoléon.

The pyramid and its underground lobby were inaugurated on 15 October 1988. The second phase of the Grand Louvre plan, La Pyramide Inversée (The Inverted Pyramid), was completed in 1993. As of 2002, attendance had doubled since completion.

Source : Wikipedia contributors, "Musée du Louvre"

More info
  • Opening hours - Open everyday except tuesday, from 9am to 6pm - Night opening until 9.45pm on wednesday and friday - Closed on the following holidays : January 1st, May 1st and December 25th
  • Prices - Permanent collections : 11 euros (does not include exhibitions at the Napoléon Hall and the Eugène-Delacroix Museum) - Temporary exhibitions : 12 euros (at the Napoléon Hall ; such exhibitions are not free on the first sunday of the month) - Combined tickets : 15 euros
  • The Pyramid - It was conceived by architect Ieoh Ming Pei, it was made of foliated glass and metal, and it was inaugurated in 1989. Parisians have now almost forgot how much controversy this Pyramid raised in the 1980's.
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