AUDIO GUIDE

Job #1932

Job Posting Details

Job # 1932 AUDIO GUIDE

Posted Date
Aug 11, 2006 @ 10:28
Respond By
Aug 15, 2006
Word Count
0
Budget
$500
Language
English
Gender
Female
Age Range
-
Category
-

Job Description

Hello
We are a young company based in France, with a limited budget. We need a turn-key solution for the launch of our future product which is a kind of audioguide for Paris. The script is about 50 000 words in length. They will need to be in MP3 format be split into 500 separate files. Dry voice only is required, no music or special effects.
Please provide your rates per 1000 words, 10 000 words, 50 000 words.

Speaker : Woman, voice aged approximately 35 years-old, with no accent

Samples of texts to convert:

This is one of the most famous monuments in Paris, which was built to celebrate the Napoleonic victories, in particular the victory of Austerlitz (1805). It is to be found in the centre of the Place de l'Etoile where twelve avenues named after the great French generals converge. Commissioned by Napoleon in 1806, the monument was not completed until 1836. 45 m. high and 46 m. wide, its low-relief sculptures depict the great battles of the Republic and Empire. On the right, when coming from the Champs-Elysées, the famous Marseillaise by the sculpteur, Rude, represents the departure of the Volunteers of 1792, enlisted by the Legislative Assembly to face the Prussian invasion of Lorraine: it is an allegory of the home country calling citizens to defend their independence.

Beneath the arch, is the tomb of the Unknown Soldier, a symbol of the fallen in The First World War, in memory of whom a flame is kept burning. One may also read the names of the battles and the 558 generals (those killed in action are underlined). Inside, the Arc de Triomphe museum relates how the edifice was created. From the terrace roof, there is a fabulous view of Paris, the Champs Elysées and La Défense (the "Voie Royale" Royal Way, 7 kms long).

Things to See:
The tomb of the Unknown Soldier
The monument's sculptures
The large avenues leading from the Arc de Triomphe
The Champs Elysées
At 6:30 pm, the flame of the Unknown Soldier is rekindled
On the 21st of June, the sun sets in the Arc de Triomphe

Things to do:
Ascend the Arc de Triomphe and admire the view which extends from the Louvre to La Défense ("la Voie Royale")

Located at the site of the old village of Beaubourg, this cultural centre devoted to contemporary artistic creation, owes its existence to President Pompidou (1911-1974). Completed in 1977, it is the work of avant-garde architects Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers. Its innovative structure which places supporting
and technical components on the outside of the building, allows the opening-up of floors of 7,500 m2 each. The centre is home to the National Museum of Modern Art and its exhibitions (one of the largest modern art museums in the world which depicts the history of 20th Century art), the Public Information Library, a restaurant, workshops, theatres for live shows and cinema, a designer boutique and a specialised library.

Things to see:
The monument itself
The panoramic view of Paris from the top floor
The library open until 10 pm
La "Piazza" and its entertainment (musicians, travelling acrobats)
The unusual fountains by Niki de Saint-Phalle

Things to do:
Visit the National Museum of Modern Art and one of its numerous short-term exhibitions

The Avenue des Champs Elysées is considered to be the most beautiful avenue in the world. Linking Place de la Concorde with the Arc de Triomphe, it makes for a grandiose sight, a centre of luxury commerce and place of entertainment. It was built in the 17th Century by Le Nôtre (the head gardener at Versailles) to provide a promenade for the king, but it was not until the Second Empire that the area would become a safe place and full of life. Accommodating restaurants, circuses and balls, it was the fashionable place to be in the Belle Epoque (a period of gracious living and security for the well-to-do, ended by the First World War). Today, the avenue is still very frequented and the most prestigious brands and labels are on display in the shop windows. The avenue is also a public gathering place, for instance during the French Public Holiday (military parade of the 14th of July) or for important political or sporting events. The lower part, situated on former marshland, is made up of gardens housing pavilions which today are restaurants and theatres. From the Champs Elysées roundabout, the built-up part of the avenue starts, where one finds shops, restaurants and nightclubs. The Champs Elysées constitutes that part of a 7 kms stretch of main road called the "Voie Royale", which links La Cour Napoléon du Louvre with La Défense.

Further information:
Who would imagine that the most beautiful avenue in the world, so well-known, was originally nothing more than an area of marshland. It was at the behest of Marie de Médicis, who in 1616 had trees planted there, that the path become the Queen's walkway. In 1626, she had the layout of the route improved, in direct line with the Tuileries to form what one would come to call La Voie Triomphale (The Triumphal Way). In 1709, the first Champs-Elysées appeared, taken from the name of a promenade for the king which went from the present-day pathway of the Jardin des Tuileries, designed by Le Nôtre, to the Champs-Elysées roundabout. The road itself was extended in 1724 by the Duc d'Antin up to l'Etoile, then up to the Neuilly bridge by the Marquis of Marigny. The latter summoned Gabrielle to beautify the avenue of the Champs-Elysées which, at the time, only amounted to six large properties ! A little aside: the route these days leads up to la Défense to create a road of 7 kms long in total, with the Tuileries, Concorde and the Arc de Triomphe all in sight. The Champs-Elysées strictly speaking, have always been a great success: in the 18th Century, one went there for entertainment, eating and dancing. At the time, green areas were still widespread: they provided pleasant daytime walks, but once people had departed in the evening, these areas had the reputation of being somewhat dangerous.

Under the Directorate, the place was one where acrobats and bear tamers met ! From the time of the First Empire, began the tradition of organising military parades there. Having become property of the state in 1828, it became a large and beautiful avenue with pavements, fountains and gaslamps for lighting. People started to move in to live there, and during the Second Empire, it was the place "to be seen." Numerous were the groups of people who strutted about there before returning to the Bois de Boulogne. The top of the avenue, between the Arc de Triomphe and the roundabout, has become a great shopping centre: many boutiques (not always luxury), banks, bars and restaurants. Located at number 78, are the Arcades du Lido (the famous cabaret club being in the basement). The construction of these arcades was commissioned by Léonard Rosental who had them built in 1924 onto a hotel of which he had become the owner. The inauguration in 1926, revealed one of the most luxurious venues: a Lalique fountain, Jacopazzi glassware, etc., all of this having been created in a most sophisticated art deco style. Numerous lounges with decor in the style of a "passenger ship" are to be found throughout the arcades. It is certainly the only passageway in the avenue worth seeing, as the others (numbers 26, 52, 66 et 74) are of no real interest. At number 56, is the Virgin megastore, at 99, is Fouquet's restaurant. At the location of the HSBC bank, number 103, was the former Elysée Palace. The area at the bottom of the avenue, between the roundabout and la Concorde is a total contrast: there are gardens and pavilions, the Ledoyen restaurant, l'Espace Cardin, the former palace of the Universal Exhibition of 1900; the Grand Palais and the Petit Palais are a little further on.

Things to see:
The gardens
The Gabriel Pavilion
The Grand Palais
The Petit Palais
The Arc de Triomphe
The shops
The famous Fouquet's
The nightclubs, including The Queen
La place de la Concorde
The avenue's entertainment and events

Things to do:
Stroll about the Champs Elysées and go shopping
Visit one of the exhibitions at the Grand Palais
Visit the marché aux timbres (Stamp Market) which is open on certain days
Have a drink at one of the many café terraces on the avenue

Designed in 1748 to accommodate the equestrian statue by Bouchardon of King Louis XV the square is one of the most elegant places in Paris, typifying the neo-classical French style. The statue of Louis XV met the same fate as all other symbols of the monarchy during the Revolution: it was melted down in 1792 and a statue of liberty was erected in its place. The square was an important location at the time of the Revolution, as it was here that the guillotine was set up: it is estimated that more than a thousand heads rolled here, including those of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette in 1793. The Marly Horses which mark the entrance of the Champs-Elysées come from one of the residences of Louis XVI. The Obelisk, 33 centuries old, comes from the ruins of Luxor Temple in Egypt (its twin still stands there). It was a gift from Mehemet Ali to King Charles X in 1829. Of the two hotels designed by the architect Gabriel to accommodate ambassadors, the one on the left incorporates the well-known luxury Hôtel de Crillon; and the one on the right houses the Ministry of the Navy (Admiralty). The Concorde bridge which links the square with the l’Assemblée Nationale (National Assembly or Congress/ Parliament) was constructed using stones from the Bastille.

Things to see:
The square itself and the view over Madeleine, the Assemblée Nationale, the Champs-Elysées and the Tuileries
The Hôtel de Crillon
The Obelisk
The Marly Horses
The Concorde bridge
The colonnade of the Assemblée Nationale

Things to do:
Have a drink at the Crillon
Visit the boutiques in rue Royale
Relax in the Parc des Tuileries nearby
Visit the Orangerie and Jeu de Paume museums close by

The site of Notre-Dame is made up of different parts, all of which are worth seeing.
- Notre-Dame Cathedral
- The open square (parvis) in front of the cathedral
- The cathedral's façade
- Notre-Dame's towers which are accessible to the public
- Notre-Dame museum and the archaeological crypt
- Notre-Dame's gardens
- The treasure of the cathedral

The building's architecture:
Notre-Dame Cathedral (Cathedral of Our Lady) whose name is in homage to the mother of Christ, is one of the largest neo-gothic cathedrals in the world. Construction began in 1163, under the aegis of Bishop Maurice de Sully, being completed in 1345 due to the works of Pierre de Montreuil (architect of la Sainte-Chapelle) and Jean de Chelles. It was built on the ruins of a Romanesque church founded by Clovis' son Childebert I. Notre-Dame is one of the first churches with flying buttresses, whose extended shape leads rainwater as far away as possible from the foundations, thanks to the famous gargoyles styled as monsters, which you can admire. In the 18th Century, part of the stained-glass was removed
to cast more light within the edifice. In 1771, the main portal was demolished in order to allow processions free passage. During the French Revolution, the cathedral suffered damage: the bells were melted down, the statues were broken and the church became the Temple of Reason. It was not until 1844, that Lassus and Viollet-le-Duc started to carry out restoration work.
Its dimensions: 130 m. 48 m. 35 m.

The Cathedral's History:
Notre-Dame has been at the centre of significant historical, political and religious events:
1239: the laying of the crown of thorns by Saint-Louis
1297: canonisation of Louis IX into becoming Saint-Louis
1302: the opening of the first States-General by Philippe le Bel
1431: coronation of Henri VI
1455: the beginning of the trial of Joan of Arc
1687: pronouncement of the funeral oration of Condé
During the French Revolution: the statues were destroyed, the bells were melted down
1804: the reception of Pope Pius VII
1944: Mass interrupted by an attack against General de Gaulle
1980: Mass held on the parvis by Pope John-Paul II

The site's main places of interest are the following:

The Parvis
Haussman's work enabled the size of the parvis to be quadrupled. A masterpiece of gothic art, the cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris is striking by its perfect unity and well-balanced proportions which lend it majesty and beauty. The present building was finished in 1300 after almost two centuries of work. Notre-Dame is one of the first churches with flying buttresses, whose extended shape leads rainwater as far away as possible from the foundations, thanks to the famous gargoyles styled as monsters. In the 18th Century, part of the stained-glass was removed to cast more light within the edifice. Due to its being very damaged, the cathedral was restored in the 19th Century by Viollet-le-Duc. Its dimensions are:
130 m. (length), 48 m. (width), 35 m. (height).

Amongst the significant events in the building's history:
1239: the laying of the crown of thorns by King Saint-Louis
1297: canonisation of Louis IX into becoming Saint-Louis
1302: the opening of the first States-General by Philippe le Bel
1431: coronation of Henri VI
1455: the beginning of the trial of Joan of Arc
1687: pronouncement of the funeral oration of Condé by Bossuet
1771: Demolition of the central portal in order to allow processions free passage.
During the French Revolution, the cathedral suffered damage: the bells were melted down, the statues were destroyed and the church became the "Temple of Reason"
1804: coronation of Napoléon
1944: Te Deum to celebrate the liberation of Paris
1980: Mass held on the parvis by Pope John-Paul II

On the imposing façade, one can admire the King's Gallery (28 Kings of Israel, the ancestors of Christ), the large rose window of 10 m. diameter, as well as the magnificent portal sculptures (on the left, one of the Virgin; in the centre, the Last Judgement; and on the right, Saint Anne). If one were to imagine this façade painted, it would be like the illustrated Bible. The towers reach a height of 69 m. and give an unimpeded view over Paris. Inside, one can see the huge pillars of the nave which support the edifice. The organ is the largest in France. The most noteworthy of the stained-glass windows are the three roses, in particular that of the northern transept, which is almost totally intact. The chapels are dedicated to rich families and the brotherhoods. At the entrance of the choir, you will find Saint-Denis and the Virgin and Child, called "Notre Dame de Paris". In the choir, one notices the stalls and the magnificent Pietà de Costou, surrounded by statues of Louis XIII by Costou and Louis XIV by Coysevox. In the Treasure Room, one can see the cathedrals's gold and silver work, but above all, the crown of thorns, Saint Clou, and a piece of the cross which are still worshipped. From the park, you can admire the remarkable structure of the flying buttresses. Underneath the parvis, vestiges of the old city are shown in the archaeological crypt.

Things to see:
Notre-Dame's towers (join the queue at the side)
Notre-Dame museum and the archaeological crypt
Notre-Dame gardens
The cathedral's treasure
On the parvis, the outline of old roads
Point Zero on the parvis

Things to do:
Ascend one of the towers to admire the view over Paris
Go down to the quayside and take a table at one of the barges
Attend a mass (several per day)
Listen to the organ recital on Sunday at 5.45 pm

This is the historic heart of Paris, where the first men settled in pre-history, subsequently becoming the little Gallo-Roman town of Lutetia (Lutèce). It was under Clovis that Paris became the capital of the Frankish kingdom. In the Middle Ages, the Ile de la Cité was the heart of the town and the powers of this, the largest city in Europe, were centred here. To the east, the Palais united the royal residence and higher administration: it bacame the Palais de Justice (Law Courts) which still house today the magnificent Sainte-Chapelle from the 13th century. To the eastern extremity, there is the lovely Place Dauphine, the Pont-Neuf (New Bridge), and the statue of Henri IV. To the west, the Ile focused its religious powers, principally with Notre-Dame Cathedral and the Bishop's palace of Hôtel-Dieu. The gardens provide a view of Notre-Dame as well as the quays.

Things to see:
Notre-Dame Cathedral
The Conciergerie
La Sainte-Chapelle
La Place Dauphine
The flower market
The quays

Things to do:
Go to the top of Notre-Dame
Stroll about the quays

This is one of the most pleasant districts of Paris, where one can happily stroll about with the start of fair weather. Built in the 17th Century, l'île Saint-Louis combines two islets (l’île aux Vaches and l’île Notre-Dame) according to Le Vau's design. It has retained all its old charm with magnificent hotels, in particular the Hôtel de Lauzun on the quai d’Anjou (Anjou quay). Because of its peace and quiet, the île Saint-Louis makes for a very popular place for walks, either in the old streets, on the quays or on the river banks from which there are magnificent views of Paris.

Things to see:
Saint-Louis church
The Hôtel de Lauzun
Street entertainment (jugglers, etc.)

Things to do:
Eat a Berthillon ice cream
Walk about on the quays

"Montmartre" is a village in Paris and represents an image of the French which is conveyed around the entire world. The village of Montmartre has been able to retain its original style, its old houses, narrow roads, etc. Recently featured in the film Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain, the hillock and its cobbled streets offer a delightful and romantic walk. Symbol of a "Bohemian" way of life, many artists have found refuge at Montmartre (Picasso, Manet). La Place du Tertre at the summit of the hillock (130 m. altitude) accommodates painters and cafés. One could acquire a decided preference for its sheltered streets and unique views over Paris which make Montmartre one of the most characterful quarters in the capital.

Things to see:
Le Sacré-Cœur
La place du Tertre
The Montmartre vines
Le Bateau-Lavoir
Le Lapin Agile (Cabaret)
The unimpeded view over Paris from Sacré-Cœur
The halles Saint-Pierre and the Abbesses and Pigalle quarters nearby

Things to do:
Stroll around the alleys which are characteristic of Montmartre village
Have your portrait done by the painters and sketch artists on the place du Tertre
Take a ride in a tourist train to visit the district
Follow in the footsteps of Amelie Poulain

This former royal palace built in an ornate and imposing architectural design, is one of the largest and most famous museums in the world. It comprises exceptional collections derived from numerous civilisations from Antiquity up to 1830. The tour includes a visit to 8 different sections:
- Oriental antiquities
- Egyptian antiquities
- Greek, Etruscan and Roman antiquities
- Islamic art
- Sculptures
- Objets d'art
- Paintings
- Graphic art
In the Carrousel gallery, there are boutiques, an auditorium, restaurants and the museum library.

Things to see:
The Colonnade
La cour carrée du Louvre (Square Courtyard of the Louvre)
The Pyramid
The medieval Louvre
The Carrousel shopping arcade
The museum's masterpieces:
La Joconde (The Mona Lisa)
Winged Victory of Samothrace
Venus de Milo
The Sphinx

Things to do:
Relax in the Jardin des Tuileries nearby
Have a drink or eat at the Café Marly
Follow in the tracks of the Da Vinci Code

This former railway station and hotel, characteristic of the Belle Epoque, now houses a museum dedicated to all forms of artistic expression (painting, sculpture, architecture, decorative art, cinema, photography, graphic art, music, literature, history) during the prolific period from 1848 to 1914. The wealth of its collections and the quality of presentation make it one of the most interesting museums in Paris.

Things to see:
The historical building itself
The museum and its masterpieces (the Impressionists, Van Gogh, Gauguin)
The top-floor terrace
The quays
The footbridge designed by Solférino which leads to the Jardin des Tuileries

Having narrowly escaped an attack on leaving the old theatre, Napoléon III commissioned the construction of a new opera house in a safe place. Built from 1861 to 1875 by Charles Garnier, in a Second Empire style, it was inaugurated by the Republic, who were somewhat embarrassed about the ostentatious luxury of the building. Situated in the middle of a business district, the opera house is the symbol of bourgeois society at the end of the 19th Century, who went to the shows "to be seen." Its interior layout lends as much space to the stage as to the stairways and foyers, leaving the maximum area for mingling. Its measurements are impressive: 172 m. lengthways and 101 m. widthways with a surface area of 11,000 m2. On the polychrome façade, one can read the names of the great composers. On the inside, it is richly embellished, with a magnificent stairway, the red and gold hall (including the Chagall ceiling installed in 1964) and the beautifully restored foyers. Since 1989, the Bastille opera house has provided a more modern theatre for Parisian audiences.

Things to see:
The Opera House itself
La Place de l'Opéra (The Opera Square)
Le Café de la Paix

Things to do:
Attend an opera or ballet
Stroll about the large boulevards adjoining Place de l’Opéra
Go shopping in the Grands Magasins nearby

At the top of Mount Sainte-Geneviève (Parisian martyr), this monument was the church that Louis XV had built to give thanks to the saint for his recovery in 1744. Constructed by Soufflot from 1758, in a neo-classical style inspired by the temples of antiquity, the church was not completed during the Revolution. In 1791, the National Assembly decided to make it the resting place of "the ashes of the great men of the epoque of French liberty": Voltaire and Rousseau were the first to be interred there. Having become a church again, it was not until the Third Republic (end of the 19th Century) that the Panthéon re-established its Republican purpose (one can read on the pediment: "To great men is the country grateful"). The dome is in fact made up of three interlinking domes which allow light to pass through. Inside, the paintings depict events in Christian France. There is also Foucault's Pendulum which proved the rotation of the earth (1851). In the crypt, lie the ashes of great men in French history: military men, writers (Zola, Hugo), politicians, (Gambetta, Jaurès, Eboué, Cassin, Monnet), scientists (Pierre and Marie Curie), etc.

Things to see:
Foucault's Pendulum
The tombs in the crypt

Stretching from the quays to the Panthéon, since the Middle Ages, this has been the area of universities where lessons were given in Latin until 1789 (hence its name). La Sorbonne, university centre, reputed for the quality of its teaching, is the centre of this quarter where the most prestigious French schools are still to be found. Being an intellectual district, libraries, cinemas and bars are numerous. The Panthéon, the church of Saint-Etienne-du-Mont and the Sorbonne are the principal places of interest on Mount Sainte-Geneviève. One can also go to the Jardin du Luxembourg side. Near the Seine, the Saint-Séverin district has picturesque pedestrian alleyways in which there are many restaurants.

Things to see:
La place Saint-Michel
La fontaine Saint-Michel
Le musée du Moyen Age (the Middles Ages Museum)
The Thermal Springs at Cluny
Le Collège de France
The church of Saint-Séverin
The church of Saint-Julien-le-Pauvre
La Sorbonne
Le Panthéon
The church of Saint-Etienne-du-Mont
Le Val de Grâce
La place Mouffetard

Things to do:
Eat in the Saint-Séverin quarter
Have a drink on the Place de la Sorbonne

The church of Sacré-Cœur, due to its location on top of the Montmartre hill, is one of the landmarks of Paris and more specifically of Montmartre. Constructed in memory of the fallen of 1870, according to the design laid out by Paul Abadie, the church is made of limestone which whitens in the rain. It is not a parish church, but a place of pilgrimage: people come from all over the world to worship the Sacré Coeur de Jésus (Sacred Heart of Jesus). The Neo-Byzantine style of the group of buildings was widely debated and the construction work lasted from 1876 to 1914, despite large public funding and the work of three architects. There is a remarkable view from the dome. The bell-tower accommodates "la Savoyarde", a bell which weighs 18,000 kilograms.

Things to see:
Sacré-Cœur's façade
The dome
The crypt
The view over all of Paris from the parvis
The Montmartre quarter

Around the church, a vestige of the mighty Benedictine Abbey, the mythical Saint-Germain-des-Prés quarter comprises a district which is at the same time chic and intellectual, home to numerous writers and artists. Boulevard Saint-Germain, the three cafés (Café de Flore, Café des Deux Magots and Brasserie Lipp) owe their reputation to their customers: men of letters, artists and politicians. Between the Saint-Germain church and the Institut de France, the narrow streets bordered with 17th Century hotels, are home to antique dealers, cafés, luxury boutiques and publishing houses. The district which is always lively in the evening, has streets which are well worth discovering and walking around.

Things to see:
The church of Saint-Germain-des-Prés
L’Ecole des Beaux-Arts (School of Fine Art)
The Institut de France
The boutiques
The antique dealers
The art galleries

Things to do:
Saunter about the streets
Go into the buildings' courtyards
Have a drink on one of the many terraces

A marvel of Gothic art, la Sainte-Chapelle will astound visitors by the beauty of its stained-glass. A remainder of the medieval Palace of which it made up the Royal Chapel, its construction was commissioned by King Saint-Louis to house relics of the Passion of Christ (wood of the Cross and Christ's Crown of Thorns). Despite its fragile appearance, its structure has not suffered so much as one crack since its consecration in 1248. For the first time, the walls which were entirely hollowed out, enabled the installation of glass of 15 m. tall. In the upper part of the chapel reserved for the king, the stained-glass covers an area of 618 m2 and numbers 1134 scenes depicting the Passion of Christ relating to biblical stories.

The beacon landmark monument of Paris, the Eiffel Tower was constructed for the Universal Exhibition of 1889. On completion, at a height of 300 m., it was then the tallest monument in the world. It was a feat of iron architecture which, over the course of two years, required 300 acrobatic construction workers to assemble 18,000 iron parts using 2,5 millions rivets. The framework weighs 7,000 tons, which is not a lot: because if reduced to 30 cm., the Eiffel Tower would weigh no more than 7 grams ! 50 tons of paint are required to repaint it every seven years. Every hour, 20,000 lightbulbs twinkle. In fine weather, the top floor provides a spectacular view over Paris and its suburbs. Although artists took exception and disparaged it roundly at the time of its construction, this monument has been visited by more than 120 million people.

Things to see:
Le Champ de Mars
The hourly illumination by night
Le Trocadéro (on the other side of the Seine)

Things to do:
Go for a trip down the Seine on a Bateau Mouche (literally a "fly boat" or an open excursion boat)
Have a picnic on the Champ de Mars

Go to the upper floors to admire the view over Paris
The beacon landmark monument of Paris, the Eiffel Tower was constructed for the Universal Exhibition of 1889. On completion, at a height of 300 m., it was then the tallest monument in the world. It was a feat of iron architecture which, over the course of two years, required 300 acrobatic construction workers to assemble 18,000 iron parts using 2,5 millions rivets. The framework weighs 7,000 tons, which is not a lot: because if reduced to 30 cm., the Eiffel Tower would weigh no more than 7 grams ! 50 tons of paint are required to repaint it every seven years. Every hour, 20,000 lightbulbs twinkle. In fine weather, the top floor provides a spectacular view over Paris and its suburbs. Although artists took exception and disparaged it roundly at the time of its construction, this monument has been visited by more than 120 million people.

Things to see:
Le Champ de Mars
The hourly illumination by night
Le Trocadéro (on the other side of the Seine)

Things to do:
Go for a trip down the Seine on a Bateau Mouche (literally a "fly boat" or an open excursion boat)
Have a picnic on the Champ de Mars

Go to the upper floors to admire the view over Paris
La Place Vendôme (Vendôme Square), built around 1700, provides a remarkable example of French architecture of the Grand Siècle (Great Century). Designed by Jules Hardouin-Mansart (the architect of Versailles), this majestic square was intended to provide the setting for the equestrian (on horseback), statue of Louis IV pulled down and smelted at the time of the Revolution. In the centre of the square, a 44 m. tall column, erected in 1806, depicts military scenes. It was cast using the 1250 canons taken at Austerlitz. A statue of the emperor stands at the pinnacle. Here are some of the famous houses in Place Vendôme: it is at N° 11, where in 1792, Danton, then Minister of Justice, moved into the Hôtel de la Grande Chancellerie. At N° 12, the composer Chopin died at the Hôtel Boudart de Saint James. One can see on the façade of N° 13 (present Ministry of Justice), a metre of marble which was affixed in 1795 to familiarise the Parisians with the new metric system, standardising all the Republic's weights and measures. At N° 15, is the famous luxury Hotel Ritz. The Place is world-renowned for being home to the boutiques of the greatest names in jewellery.

Things to see:
The Hotel Ritz
The jewellers' boutiques
The Vendôme column

La place des Vosges (Vosges Square) was the first perfect even-sized square in Paris, made up of 36 pavilions built in the same style (stone and pseudo brick, ground floor arcades). It is located at the site of the Palais de Tournelle, former royal residence. In 1605, Henry IV decided to beautify this area by having the Place Royale built, which became the focus of elegant society, carrousels and leisure. In the middle of the south façade, is the King's Pavilion, opposite that of the Queen. It took the name of Place des Vosges in 1800, because Napoleon called it after the first département to pay its taxes. Several renowned personnages lived there, including Madame de Sévigné, Richelieu and Victor Hugo (Museum at N°6). Its subsequent restoration made it the square that we know today: one of the most beautiful in Paris.

Things to see:
The park
The restaurants
The art galleries
Victor Hugo's house

Things to do:
Walk under the arcades

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