There is a lot more to the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, than meets the eye. When he designed the world-famous tower, Gustave Eiffel also included a special, secret apartment on the third floor.
Rumor has it that one of Eiffel’s main goals when creating the apartment was to make the people of Paris jealous–and it’s safe to say he succeeded.
The apartment has been described as an object of “general envy” among Parisians during Eiffel’s lifetime. It’s not hard to understand why, either. It sits almost 1,000 feet in the air, making it the ultimate high-rise.
Eiffel reportedly received several top-dollar offers to rent out the apartment. Some Parisians even wanted to rent it out for only one night, just to experience a taste of the high life (pun intended).
The designer declined all offers, though. He preferred to use his not-so-secret apartment as a place dedicated to quiet reflection. He also entertained some of the world’s most prestigious guests there, including Thomas Edison, who gifted Eiffel a phonograph machine during his visit.
The apartment was (and remains) quaint and cozy. Its decor has been described as a “simple style” that is preferred by scientists. It features soft chintz furniture and wooden cabinets (a sharp contrast to the steel of the Eiffel Tower), as well as a grand piano.
Today, Eiffel’s apartment looks very close to the way it did during his time living there. Many of the original furnishings are present, and mannequins of Edison, Eiffel and his daughter, Claire, have even been placed on display.
Visitors who pay for a ticket to visit the top of the Eiffel Tower cannot physically tour the apartment. However, they are able to view it through a special window.
As of October 30, 2020, the Eiffel Tower is closed to visitors. When it reopens, those who want to check out Eiffel’s Apartment, as well as the rest of the structure, can purchase tickets here.