1. The Eiffel Tower was originally built as a temporary entrance to the World’s Fair, commemorating the centennial of the French Revolution. It was built to only last 20 years before it was to be destroyed.
  2. It was Gustave Eiffel, the tower’s engineer and builder who kept the tower standing after 20 years thanks to the installation of a giant antenna for the earliest radio broadcasts.
  3. Gustave Eiffel built a secret apartment at the top of the tower with a small laboratory for his experiments.
  4. Gustave Eiffel was also responsible for the Statue of Liberty’s internal structure.
  5. 300 famous artists originally protested the tower with a petition, calling it useless, monstrous and a gigantic black factory chimney. "We, the writers, painters, sculptors, architects and lovers of the beauty of Paris, do protest with all our vigour and all our indignation, in the name of French taste and endangered French art and history, against the useless and monstrous Eiffel Tower."
  6. The Eiffel Tower was originally painted red.
  7. A decade later, it was painted yellow, then yellow-brown, until it was painted its current “Eiffel Tower Brown” color in 1968.
  8. Today it is painted 3 shades of bronze – darkest at the bottom, lightest at the top – perfectly hued to complement the color of the Paris sky.
  9. The Tower is repainted every 7 years.
  10. Gustave Eiffel climbed the 1,710 steps of the tower with a French flag when the monument opened on March 31, 1889.
  11. Since renovations in the 1980s, there are currently 1,665 steps to climb to the top of the tower.
  12. The base pillars of the Eiffel Tower are oriented with the four points of the compass.
  13. The 5 elevators’ annual journeys combined are equal to two and half times around the world or more than 103,000 kilometers.
  14. For four decades the Eiffel Tower was the tallest building in the world until the Chrysler Building in New York topped it at 319 metres. (7 metres higher than the Eiffel Tower’s 312 m height)
  15. The tower was once the world’s largest advertisement, when a quarter-million colored bulbs spelled out the Citroën, the French automobile company between 1925 to 1936.
  16. 2,500,000 rivets hold the structure together.
  17. The Tower sways slightly in the wind. During the storm of 1999, it moved approximately 13 centimeters from its initial position.
  18. Hitler initially ordered the demolition of the symbol of Paris, but his command was never carried out. Also during the German occupation of Paris, French resistance fighters cut the Eiffel Tower’s elevator cables so the Nazis had to climb the stairs.
  19. The Eiffel Tower is the world’s most visited entrance-paying monument, with around 7 million visitors each year.
  20. The Eiffel Tower has 20,000 lightbulbs that sparkle for five minutes on the hour, every hour, from nightfall to 1AM.

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