Showing posts with label paris. Show all posts
Showing posts with label paris. Show all posts

Friday, May 27, 2016

Musee d'Orsay, Paris

Musee d'Orsay

Musee d’Orsay – Museum in Paris

The Musee d’Orsay a museum in Paris, France is housed in the former Gare d’Orsay, a Beaux-Arts railway station which had been constructed for the Chemin de Fer de Paris a Orleans and completed in time for the 1900 Exposition Universelle. It is towards the left bank of the Seine and was built between 1898 and 1900.The Gare d’Orsay had been inaugurated on 14th July 1900 and considered a masterpiece of industrial architecture.

It served as a terminus for the railways of south-western France till 1939. By 1939, it is said that the short platform of the station was unsuitable for the longer trains which came to be used for mainline services and after 1939, it was utilised for suburban services and some of it became a mailing centre at the time of the World War II.

 Thereafter it was used as a set for many films like Kafka’s The Trial adjusted by Orson Welles as well as a haven for the Renaud-Barrault Theatre Company. Over a period of time it as utilised as a parking lot and also a reception centre for prisoners of war. It was also used for auctioneers when the Hotel Drouot was being reconstructed.

Largest Collections of Impressionist & Post-Impressionist Masterpieces

The museum tends to hold mainly French art which dates back from 1848 to 1914 comprising of paintings, furniture, sculptures and photography. It has the largest collection of impressionist and post-impressionist masterpieces in the world, by painters like Monet, Manet, Renoir, Cezanne, Degas, Seurat, Sisley, Gauguin and Van Gogh. Several of these works were held at the Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume prior to the opening of the museum in 1986.

It is said to be one of the largest art museum in Europe. Permission had been granted to demolish the station in 1970. However, Jacques Duhamel, Minister for Cultural Affairs, decided to build a new hotel instead and the station had been put on the supplementary list of Historic Monuments and eventually listed in 1978. The proposal of turning the station into a museum had come from the Directorate of the Museums of France and the idea was to construct a museum which would link the Louvre and the National Museum of Modern Art at the Georges Pompidou Centre. The said plan had been accepted by Georges Pompidou and a research was commissioned in 1974.

Officially Opened in December 1986

A competition had been organized in 1978 to design the new museum and ACT Architecture, comprising of a team of three young architects Pierre Colboc, Renaud Bardon and Jean-Paul Philippon, had been awarded the contract that involved the creation of 20,000 sq. m of new floor-space on four floors and the construction work was done by Bouygues.

 The Italian architect, Gac Aulenti was chosen in 1981, to design the interior inclusive of the internal arrangement, furniture, fittings and decoration of the museum. In July1986, the museum was equipped to receive its exhibits and it took 6 months to install the 2000 or so paintings, 600 sculptures together with the other works.

Most of the work of art had come from other museums like the Musee du Luxemboug and over a period of time, the collection had increased significantly due to the acquisitions and gifts. Officially, the museum opened in December 1986 by the president Francois Mitterrand.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Place Vendome, Paris


Place Vendome – First Arrondissement among Beautiful Squares of France

Place Vendome in Paris was laid in 1702 and is the first arrondissement among the most beautiful squares of France. Situated towards the north of the Tuileries Garden, it is an amazing example of neoclassical architecture in France akin to the squares of Place de la Concorde – Paris, Place de la Bourse – Bordeaux and Place Stanislas – Nancy.

Being a centre for money and luxury, Place Vendome offers a base for famous and high-status establishments namely the Ritz hotel, Chanel jewellery, Cartier, Rolex and the Ministry of Justice. In its centre the celebrated Column of Vendome tends to sit enthroned. Architect Jules Hardouin-Mansart who had built most of the Versailles Place had initially bought the land where it sits with a hope of making some revenue in real estate.

However, when the project seemed to be unsuccessful, the land was handed over to the King’s minister of finance who proposed the public square. It shape being octagonal, the square was intended to be built near the site which was formerly occupied by the palace of the First Duke of Vendome.

All Building Identical on Square

Later on when the land was passed from the minister to King Louis XIV, Mansart had re-entered the scene and was recruited to create the design for the square that was destined to oppose the Place des Vosges which had a statue in the centre of the predecessor of King Louis XIII. Alike the Place des Vosges, Mansard had made all the buildings identical on the square with arched ground floors together with tall windowed second floors.

Ornamental and pilasters pillars had been placed between each set of windows. Initially, Place Vendome was known as Place des Conquetes – Conquests Square, though was later on renamed to Place Louis de Grand – Louis the Great Square, when things were not going well for the armies of Louis. Nevertheless, a statue of the king had been erected in the square and remained there for a hundred years till it had been pulled down during the French Revolution in 1792.

Column Erected by Napoleon

Currently the column in the centre of the square had been erected by Napoleon as the Colonne D’Austerlitz and the 44 meter tall column has been modelled after Trajan Column of Rome which was built to honour the victory at Austerlitz in 1805, one of Napoleon’s greatest. It is said that the continuous ribbon of bas-relief bronze plates of the column, by the sculptor Pierre-Nolasque Bergeret had been made from 1200 cannon that were taken from both the armies of Russia and Austria at the time of the battle.

The column earlier known as the Colonne d’Austerlitz was later given the names of Colonne de la Victoire and Colonne de la Grande Armee. Presently it is known as the Colonne Vendome. The buildings on Place Vendome presently serve as residences and retail stores comprising of those belong to two famous jewellers as well as various well-known dress designers.

Several famous people have also lived along Place Vendome like composer Frederic Chopin, author George Sand and Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, who had stayed at the Ritz for some time. It is said that Ernest Hemingway had helped to liberate the Ritz in 1944.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Ten Things to Do in Paris–The City Of Lights

Image Credit: hostels-paris-france.blogspot.
Paris –The City Of Lights

Paris is a universal city. If there is less in flow of tourist, still the city is busy with the local people. It is also known to be very colourful in the nights. Paris is such a place with different tourist attractions. There are lot of sightseeing, museum, adventures and churches.

There are more than 10 million people staying here. Mountain and hill occupy almost two third of France. The weather here is pleasant, only near the mountain region it is colder, sometime it rains and snows. January and February is the coldest month of the year. France plays a very important role in art and culture. Sports are also very popular. Apart from these there are other things to do; by visiting

1.THE MUSEUM: THE LOUVRE: It was first a Palace which is now converted into a Museum. It includes paintings done by great painters like Leonardo da vici, Monalisa etc. This place is guarded by security because of the chances of paintings being stolen. Different types of Antiquities are also displayed. LatelyThe Louvre was renovated and was named as Grand Louvre, with a beautiful Pyramid structure situated in the courtyard.

2. FALAISE D AVAL: Don’t miss out on the rock formation it is a natural arche that has taken a shape of an elephant dipping its trunk in the sea and next to it is the Aiguille at a height of 70m high white as a chalk rising from the surface of the waves. These arches are developed on its own by an underground river parallel to the coastline you can walk through the arch at low tide. The sunset view is awesome. There is a small chapel on falaise d Amont and a beautiful monument in the shape of a WISHBONE in remembrance of two Frenchaviators.

3.EIFFEL TOWER: A world architectural wonder is the EIFFEL TOWER and attracts a lot of visitors who come on official or tourist visit to Paris. It has been built by the metal expert Alexandre-Gustave Eiffel keeping in mind all the parameters of its structural strength, as well as an antenna was built for has also attracted broadcasting and helped as a radio station. This statue is also known as an iron lady. Something so beautiful is that at the beginning of every hour it sparkles for five minutes.

This tower can sway 6 to 7 cm in the wind. You can even have a delicious meal at a restaurant situated on the first floor and the second floor of the tower.

4.CATACOMB TOUR: It is an adventure to experience this tour. Especially the grave of the dead and it is an underground tunnel that is situated under the city streets. The remains of the dead like the bones and the skull are stacked on each other.

5. DISNEY LAND: Disney Park is situated in Marne-la –Vallee just half an hour from Paris. The Kids will be in their glory after visiting this park. It has nearly 52 attractions. But there are also 3 fantastic parks where one will take three days to roam in these parks, they are DISNEYLAND PARK, WALT DISNEY STUDIOS PARK AND THE DISNEY VILLAGE. THE DISNEYLAND PARK IN PARIS is a place where one can meet all their favourite characters of Disney. In THE WALT DISNEY STUDIOS PARK one can enjoy the adventurous ride in the cinema, where one can watch their favourite Disney movies.

6. BATEAUX PARISIENS RIVER CRUISE: It tours the river Seine and from there one can get a wonderful glimpse of The Eiffel Tower, Notre dame cathedral and Orsay museum. Even catch the sight of house boats and floating restaurants. The boats cuts through the waters under many bridges silently, while the people eat their delicious meals, they are smartly dressed for the occasion.

7. PALACE OF VERSAILLES: This Palace was a complex that housed many government officials, mostly from the royal family, which made it very easy for the French Duke to see his officials at a short notice. It became a permanent residence for them with a population of more than 60,000 people making this one of the largest areas in France. The Palace with its artistic paintings and art work also has beautiful gardens which attracts people with its sweet aroma in the air.

8. JARDIN DU LUXEMBOURG: It is a beautiful park for children with many activities like pony ride puppet show and indoor games. There is also a rose garden, around the park there is also a palace called Palais du Luxembourg. There is a Medici fountain built in the year 1600 but was renovated in 1800. The kids also can enjoy a boat-ride in the pond.

9.NORMANDY D DAY TOUR AND BEACHES DAY TOUR: Normandy was a battlefield where many American lost their lives during the war. They were buried on that ground. The 9000 white crosses is the remembrance of the people buried. From the battlefield Omaha beach can be seen clearly. The American soldiers used to land on this beach. Normandy is famous for its Diary products.

10 PARIS COOKING CLASS: Those who want to try their hand on French menus can go for cooking classes. You will be shopping with your professional chef for the ingredients, spending time on preparing food with different techniques and not forgetting to taste cheese and wine. They have short terms courses where while touring one can learn the different cuisine of Paris.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Centre Pompidou

Centre Pompidou
Centre Pompidou – Complex Building-High Tech Architecture

Centre Pompidou which is also known as Centre Georges Pompidou is a complex building in Beauborg area of the 4th arrondissement of Paris which is near Les Halles, rue Montorgueil and the Marais. The Centre Pompidou has delighted and amazed many visitors since it was opened in 1977 not for its outstanding collection of modern art, the largest in Europe but for its radical architectural statement.

It had been designed in accordance with the style of high tech architecture by a team of architectures comprising of Richard Rogers and Renzo Piano together with Gianfranco Franchini. Moreover, it also houses the Bibliotheque publique d’information or the Public Information Library, which is a vast public library, the Musee National d’Art Moderne one of the largest museum of modern art in Europe and IRCAM, a centre for music and acoustic research. The Centre is known locally as Beaubourg, due to its location and is named after Georges Pimpidou, the President of France from 1969 to 1974, who had commissioned the building and officially opened by Valery Giscard d’Estaing on 31 January 1977.

Ultra Contemporary Artistic Hub

The former President Georges Pompidou who always wanted an ultra-contemporary artistic hub finally got it and competition winning architects Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers designed the building from the interior out with utilitarian features like pipes, air vents, plumbing together with electrical cable as part of the external façade, sparing the exterior space for events and exhibitions.

The sculpture, Horizontal, a free standing mobile which is twenty five feet high created by Alexander Calder was placed in 2012 in front of the Centre Pompidou. The vibrant and dynamic arts centre is a delight with its irresistible cocktail of galleries as well as cutting edge exhibitions, dance performances, hand-on workshops, cinemas together with other entertainment venues.

The exterior on the other hand is an awesome area to linger and watch the street performers together with the fanciful fountains. The Centre Pompidou has attracted over 150 million visitors since 1977.

Main Attraction – Musee National d’Art Moderne

The Musee National d’Art Moderne, which is France’s national collection of art that dates from 1905 onwards is the main attraction which is on the 4th and 5th floors, a fraction from the 100,000 pieces which are on display, include the work of cubist, surrealist and fauvists together with pop art and contemporary works.

Entry from rue du Renard to the large Bibliotheque Publique d’Information takes up some of the first and the whole of the second and the third floors while the sixth floor has two galleries for temporary exhibitions together with a hyperindustral restaurant – Georges which has a magnificent view of Paris and can be accessed through a free lift or elevator.

Admission to the rooftop is included with the museum and exhibition charges or one could purchase a panorama ticket to go to the roof. On the first Sunday of every month there is also a free admission to the museum. On the ground floor and in the basement, there is extra space for cinemas as well as more exhibitions.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Versailles, Paris

Versailles, Paris
Versailles Known for its Site – Chateau de Versailles 

Versailles, a city on the western edge of the French capital city of Paris is now part of the metropolis in the Ile de France region and is well known for its site of the vast royal palace and gardens built by King Louis XIV which was earlier a royal hunting lodge. Besides this, it was also one of the wealthiest cities near Paris.

 The Palace of Versailles, known also as the Chateau de Versailles had many historical events, one being the signing within the Hall of Mirrors on June 28 1919, of the Peace Treaty between defeated Germany together with the Allies which brought the First World War to an end officially.

This signing at Versailles brought about the proclamation in 1871 within the same long hall, the establishment of the German Empire under the Prussian king, the Kaiser subsequently, Earlier where the palace had started as a hunting lodge which was built by Louis XIII and thereafter Louis XIV build the palace which is known presently. Towards 1789, the palace had lost its power though currently it hosts the Museum of France’s history.

Originated in 1631, Epicentre of French Power till 1789

The former home of the French kings contains royal elegance of Old Europe. Versailles which originated in 1631, remained the epicentre of the French power and home to government offices as well as courtiers till 1789 when it evicted Louis XVI with his queen Marie Antoinette by a group of hungry and agitated crowd of mainly female revolutionaries who stormed the palace and sent the royal couple back to Paris which eventually led to their execution.

The sprawling and amazing palace of Versailles is matched to the splendour of the gardens where it is situated and one can experience a pleasant time by following its paths while admiring the fountains and the splendid view of the flowers without getting into the palace or other buildings in Versailles.

The queen, Marie Antoinette had an attachment to these grounds where it is said that she had created her own private estate here which comprised of rural homes and building along the lines of a Norman village and to escape the atmosphere of the palace would seek her own privacy here. Her estate operated as a working farm with peasants and livestock that produced fresh products for the palace.

Famous Room at Palace – Grande Galerie/Hall of Mirrors

Visitors are permitted to visit the Palace of Versailles and explore the intimate chambers including the king’s grand apartments and the most famous room at the palace is the Grande Galerie or the Hall of Mirrors which is said to have been haunted by courtiers playing politics or awaiting an audience with the monarch.

The best way to get to Versailles palace and avoid lengthy queues is to buy the ticket directly from the Chateau de Versailles website which would cost a bit more than the usual entrance amount though it includes the return railway as well as the metro tickets with an audio guided tour of the Chapel and Opera House, together with the Dauphin’s and the Mesdames’ apartments, the King’s and Queen’s State apartment, the Coach Museum and Trianons accompanied with all the temporary exhibitions.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The challenge of global sustainable tourism

Tourism can be the best and worst things.

The best when it allows people to know themselves better (1.6 billion international tourists expected in 2020!) And gives them work (5% of global GDP).

The worst when it exerts tremendous pressure on the natural environment and increases the pollution (transport, concrete, waste).

Hence the question: a global sustainable tourism is possible?

A Global Partnership for Sustainable Tourism

Yes, say the signatories of the Global Partnership for Sustainable Tourism, which brings together all stakeholders in the sector to influence policies, develop projects and give birth to a global communication platform.

Partnership was made standardized at the first annual general meeting in Costa Rica, organized by the Ministry of Tourism of Costa Rica and supported by the French and Norwegian, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).

The secretariat of the Global Partnership will be installed innovative UNEP DTIE in Paris, with the key objective of tourism on the road to sustainable development worldwide.