Eiffel Tower Goes Gold!

by Alice White Walker
a view of the eiffel tower from underneath

The next Olympics is coming to France, and the City of Light’s most famous monument is getting dressed for the occasion…

SUBSCRIBE TO THE MAGAZINE

In preparation for the 2024 Olympics which will be held in Paris, la Dame de fer (“Iron Lady”), the Eiffel Tower is being painted a golden hue!

The Tower has been repainted a total 19 times so far, a lengthy process that is repeated every seven years (a time period recommended by creator Gustave Eiffel himself). Each painting can take between 18 months to 3 years, so in advance of the 2024 Paris Olympics, the Tower is currently getting a little beauty treatment.

While it is made from sturdy puddled iron, the World Heritage Site needs regular repainting in order to avoid damage from rust, city pollution and bird droppings!

It is a colossal operation incorporating 50 painters and 60 tonnes of paint, and it is still done by hand to this day.

© Anthony DELANOIX / Unsplash

But did you know that this world-famous monument has seen several shades already?
Initially “Venetian red” before it was assembled for the 1889 World Exhibition, it transformed into a spectrum of yellows in 1899 — which was also when the 7-year painting system was adopted. From 1907 to 1947 it morphed into “yellow-brown,” with the 1917 repainting delayed due to the war. From 1968 onwards, the color coined “Eiffel Tower Brown” was selected because of its conformity with the Parisian skyline.

You might not notice it, but today’s Eiffel Tower is painted in three different shades — the darkest at the bottom and the lightest at the top.

For the painting of this newest color, all 19 layers of paint will be removed and replaced with “yellow-brown,” Gustave Eiffel’s preference for the monument. The project, costing €50 million ($60 million or £44 million) overall, is likely to be completed in 2022.

Sports fan or no, it’s another great reason to head to Paris!

Related Articles