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First floor of the Eiffel tower


The first floor is the most modern of the 3. Rebuilt in 2011, it benefits from new facilities and a staging of the tower monument to conform to what is done today. Everything is uncluttered, but this does not mean that there is nothing to see, quite the opposite. This floor is very interesting.


How to get on the 1stfloor?

The 1st floor and the second have this in common that they are accessible at the same rate, under the same conditions. Who can go first can go to second. The rates are therefore identical, and the means of access too.

Without elevators:

Adult: 7,00 €

Child: 5,00 €

Special rate: 3,00 €

With elevators:

Adult: 11,00 €

Child: 8,50 €

Special rate: 4,00 €

So we go up to this floor either by the stairs or by one of the two elevators (Pillar East or West, as desired). If it's by stairs, know that the climb is long but not that painful. 

First floor

First floor

There is 56m to climb, the stairs are many palliers. Go up and you will discover the structure of the tower, these beams, its spacers, and you will see the elevator cabins, with outdoor mannequins recalling the profession of liftier until the 80s. You will also better understand the height, which can be more impressive as you are outdoors. One of the drawbacks is that to access the 2nd floor you will have to continue to walk on foot, and there it is is a little longer, especially since you will start to get tired. The good news is that you will not be asked to go down the elevator ...

Otherwise the elevator is ideal for those who are afraid of not keeping pace with the climb. And then it's the only way to get to the 3rd floor, if you want to go upstairs.


The main floor

At each corner there is the passage of a pillar, so it is a fairly large square area occupied by the beams and other spacers. They contain the elevator stations from which one goes up or down one floor. The four sides form a kind of wide esplanade elevated above the galleries. Three of these esplanades are occupied by modern pavilions, of a pretty deep red, pavilion in which are various facilities explained below. These pavilions have both facades (inner side and gallery side) fully glazed, which allows to see what they contain and increases the impression of purification of the entire floor.

Of course, the central hole of the floor is protected. Since 2011 the guardrail is made of glass plates inclined to the outside, an approximate size of 2m50. As the central plates are at the forefront of the glass floors, it is interesting, for the bravest, to lean against the glass, arms outstretched: It gives an impression of flying, something terrible! Otherwise there are 4 floors of glass on this floor, the only one that is provided. 4 are in the corners of the hole, 4 in the middle of the sides, where the ground advances in the void. As there are many supporting beams the impression of emptiness is not as blatant as on other monuments. For example, Toronto's CN Tower, with its glass floor at 200m above sea level, is truly exceptional. The one at London Bridge in London is a little lower, forty meters. Here, we are 57m high.

This floor also contains some interesting historical or museographic elements. There is, in bulk, a portion of the staircase rising to the 3rd floor and which was later dismantled, a kiosk showing the 1889 World's Fair, another showing the history of the construction, the pump of the elevator Edoux, the one that led to the 3rd floor before 1983, etc. All this is explained in detail below, but above all, here is a description of this floor in 1900 written by Gustave Eiffel, for those interested.



This platform is represented in plan in the plate XVIII, fig. 3, and in elevation in the plate XIX, fig. 1. It is located at a height of 91.11 m. It occupies a large square area of 70.69 m, measured in the axis of the outer columns, and 71.69 m, measured outside the gutter. In the center of the Tower, there is an empty part formed by a square of 29.00 m of side with sloped angles, and presenting in the middle of the sides bulges carrying balconies cantilevered:

  • The total surface area measured outside the gutter is 5,140 m2, that of the 724 m2 interior vacuum.
  • The net area is therefore 4 416 m2
  • The platform is bounded on the outside by a 2.60m wide gallery, all around, and on the inside by four balconies, one on each side, with a rounded projection.
  • The part of the platform occupied by the locations of the four pillars is assigned to the elevators and to the stairs, and contains in addition to a few small pavilions and shops for the sale of tickets and small items.

Between the pillars are built four main buildings, which are: The Flamand restaurant, transformed, since the Exhibition of 1889, in theater, and located on the North-West face; the Russian restaurant located on the North-East side; the French restaurant on the East-South side, and finally the Anglo-American bar turned into a brewery, and located on the south-west face. We will give a detailed description of each part of the platform and the various transformations that have been made since 1889.

Floor. The floor of the platform, not including that of the gallery and balconies, was originally formed by a hollow terracotta slab (Perrière system) supported on iron joists of 0.160 m height and spaced 0.65 m. This slab was covered with a cement screed receiving 11 x 8 plaster-bonded plywood beams, on which a decking of 22 x 3.8 ply boards (split plywood) overlapped. a layer of asphalt. This floor weighed 145 kg per m 2 and was broken down as follows: Hourdis Perrière 70 kg; Wood 27 kg; Asphalt 48 kg.

Since 1889, the floor structure has been modified. The joists, planks and asphalt have been removed. On each joist, a small concrete wall was raised, having the width of the joist flange and a height varying from 0.05 m to 0.10 m, to give the necessary slope for the flow of water. storm. On these walls is a reinforced cement slab 30 mm thick. This pavement, executed by Mr. Coignet, is of good service and the weight per meter superficial, including wall, is only 110 kg instead of 145 kg.

Gallery. The perimeter gallery has its floor located at 89.93 m, ie 1.20 m below that of the actual platform. This provision was adopted so that the walkers of the gallery do not interfere with the view of restaurant consumers. Moreover, many stairs facilitate the passage from one level to another. The floor of the galleries is not hoarded. It is simply a bitumen floor. The weight per surface meter is 75 kg including 27 kg of wood and 48 kg of asphalt.

Each gallery is made up of a series of 9 arcades (plate XIX, Fig. 1) 7.76 m of opening for the common arcades, 7.96 for the corner arcades, and a height of 6.95 m with the key. These arcades of iron and wood, whose iron frames are represented in the plate XXIII, fig . 11, have the shape of a crescent, whose height at the top is 2.00 m. In the parts between the rays of these croissants are yellow glass cabochons and, above them, cast tinned and tinted glasses giving the appearance of golden plates. The whole is crowned by a large stamped zinc motif. The arches are connected to each other by decorative escutcheons serving as base for 8.00 m high poles carrying flags.

Each of them is divided into two other semicirculars, whose edges joined by a wooden lattice rest on cast iron columns; the middle column is unique; the two extremes comprise between them a solid panel formed by a decorative porcelain filling supplied by M. Parvillée. Finally, the columns are joined by a railing consisting of varnished stoneware balusters maintained by an iron rail and a wide wooden handrail. These balusters, numbering 560, were provided by Emile Muller. All of this is treated in the most decorative way and has been generally considered excellent.

The roof of the gallery is corrugated zinc resting on a raft which itself is supported on five small farms first included in the depth of the arcade. At the right of restaurants, the roof of each arch extends over the entire depth of the building and is one with it. In the center of each arch is a large frosted glass balloon wrapped in a metal lattice, in which is a gas nozzle. This line of luminous balloons illuminates the gallery and is very decorative during the evening and even during the day.

All the outdoor lighting of the platforms was made during the Exhibition, by means of gas, by candelabras carrying fireplaces of 750 and 550 l. The interior lighting was electric. After the Exhibition, the gas was removed and replaced everywhere by incandescent lamps: it is for this reason that the electricity generators have been doubled, as we have seen about mechanical devices.

Stormwater discharge. The evacuation of rainwater falling on the galleries, the platform or the balconies, required a rather complicated channel, which is represented plate XVIII, fig. 3, to which we will refer. The waters that fall on the roof of the galleries meet first in the gutters which separate each arcade of the next and which are sloping towards the outside. From there, these waters arrive by the pipes I (see in particular the pile 4 of this board) in the guteau which surrounds the whole gallery, to come flow in the tubes G or C. These serve as manifolds for the pipes T , which themselves leave siphons S distributed at low points on the surface of the platform and balconies. The collectors C, four in number, meet two by two to thus lead to two downspouts x, attached to the inner rafters to the piles 4 and 2. These pipes, which are also used for the evacuation of water materials. closets, lead to an underground sewer passing near the feet of the Tower.

Restaurants. The premises assigned to restaurants include four buildings with the same plan dimensions, but with different elevations according to the style adopted: Flemish, Anglo-American, Russian and French. The length is determined by that of the 3 central arches whose extrados is extended to form the circular cover of the three spans of the building. This length is therefore 3 x 7.765 = 23.295 m. The openings of 7.765 m are divided themselves into two centers of 3.88 m giving the width of the open windows on the gallery. The width includes the same three spacings giving 11.65 m, plus an annex of 3.35 m, or together 15.00 m.

This annex rises to any height only in the central span. On the sides, this part stops at a height of 2.95 m and forms two lead-filled terraces accessed from inside by a special staircase. The construction is made in apparent wood for Anglo-American, Flemish and Russian restaurants. It is half-timbered with staff for the French restaurant. All these woods were passed, at the time of their installation, a flame retardant plaster in the fear of a fire whose consequences could have been formidable.

We give below a summary description of these restaurants, with the modifications that have been made; we add the kiosks and water closets, including the water service:


Description of restaurants in 1900

Anglo-American Bar. (board XXX, Fig. 1 to 10). The number of rows of triple farms is two. They lie in the middle part on double wooden posts; they have the shape and dimensions shown in Figure 6. The front façade overlooking the gallery is located 1683 m behind the end of the platform, so as to provide a terrace placed at 1.20 m. above the floor of the gallery. This terrace is protected by a balustrade (plate XXIX, Fig. 13,10 and 17).

The woods of the front facade attach to the iron trusses of the gallery by boxes shown in Figures 1 and 10 of the board XXX. All this former part is occupied by berries. In the posterior part, the walls are thus constituted: the angle and main columns have 16 x 16; those of the intermediate panels have 10 X 10 and are joined by two partitions in friezes of 0.11 m wide and 23 mm thick. The gables are decorated by colored windows of the house Champigneulle.

Under the terraces are located the ancillary services of restaurants (offices, lingerie, WC, descents to cellars and kitchens, etc.). The circular shaped cover is corrugated zinc; the 3 bays are separated by a gutter of 0.05 x 0.32. The water is directed, as we have seen, in the gutter of the gallery of the 1st floor. At the top of the roof is a skylight 2.05 m wide. For this restaurant, it is covered in zinc and is only used for ventilation. It is the same for Flemish and French restaurants. For the Russian restaurant, it includes three glazed frames.

The horizontal ceiling is divided into boxes, with four glazed panels in the central span and three panels in the lateral bays. The floor laid on the Perrière slab consists of plaster-covered oak beams covered by an oak floor made of 0.060 x 0.023 friezes. Each restaurant has two basements, one of which is for the kitchen and one for the cellar. The width is 3 80 m, the height of 3.66 m and the length of 11.03 m (Plate XVI, Figs 8 and 9). The floor of these basements is, like that of the restaurant, constituted by a Peridian slab covered with wood and bitumen; the partitions are made of plaster tiles externally coated with wood. The basements communicate with each other by footbridges, placed in piles 2 and 3. The garbage of the restaurants are brought each morning to a trapdoor U located near the East pillar (board XVIII, Fig. 3) and closing a large pipe S of 0.50 m in diameter that runs along the inner crossbow of the East stack. This pipe ends up on the ground with a wagon-wheel u (Fig. 1) which is removed once full and delivered to the road service.

Russian Restaurant. It is similar to the previous one, to know the decoration. The facades are represented in the plate XXIX, fig. 6, 11 and 12. The trusses are shown in sections 13 and 11, and the plan is shown in figure 10. The solid ceiling of the other buildings is replaced by awnings.

In the facade overlooking the gallery, the glazed front wall has been replaced since the Exhibition by a bow window, occupying the width of the terrace, and projecting from 1.97 m on the facade. The new wall, very rich and elegant, is formed by large frames of mobile ice of an exceptional size, 3.53 x 1.90, These mobile frames are very accurately balanced by lead counterweight and can, almost without effort, be raised or lowered at the whim of diners, depending on whether the weather was good or bad.

French Restaurant. It is represented as a façade in the plate XXIX, fig. 1,2,3,6, as figs. 7 and 8, and as plan on cover fig. 4 and 5. It is built of timber framed by 18 x 18 poles and 8 x 8 scarves, joined externally by a raw planking on which was stuck a canvas covered with paint; the decorative aspect is obtained by a trellis nailed on this canvas. Inside are carved panels of staff forming the decoration; the whole is covered by a coating with white lead and several layers of white paint. The ceiling and the partitions are also in staff. The ceiling contains only one oval glazed panel per bay.

The plan layout includes a large room occupying the central span; on one side a large living room of 11.55 m, on the other a vestibule access to two small lounges reserved. On the inner side and on the lateral bays are the ancillary services. This part has been covered, since the Exhibition, by private firms, occupying the terraces of other restaurants.

Flemish Restaurant. This restaurant was identical to the Anglo-American bar, except the decoration. Since the Exhibition, it has been transformed into a hall and theater. It is represented on the front board XXX, fig. 11, 12 and 17, in section fig. 13, 14, 15, 18, 19 and 20, and in plan fig. 16 and 21.

In front of the orchestra, are arranged 8 rows of chairs and laterally 7 rows of chairs on each side. The bottom of the room is occupied by 10 baths. The total number of places is 280. The scene is located on the side of the interior. Its width is that of the central span, that is 7,705 m, and for depth 4,40 m to the backdrop. In order to provide a passage behind it, the outer wall has been rounded parallel to the balcony of the platform. The stage is elevated 0.83 m above the theater floor. On the right and on the left are the cabinet of the Direction, corresponding to a corridor which ends at the drum of the door of entry, and of the lodges of artists. During the intermissions, spectators can go through large bays on the terrace overlooking the north-west face, and the part of the gallery along the theater. The entrance of the public is done by the west facade, which is equipped with a drum. On the left is the cash register, on the right it is a corridor that leads to the director's office.

The cover is identical to that of the Anglo-American bar, the basement is reserved for artists' lodges. The Flamand restaurant and the Anglo-American bar were built by the Pombla house, as frame and carpentry. The Russian and French restaurants were built, as a frame, by MM. Pillet and Schmid, and as carpentry by M. Deleuze.

Kiosks, water closets, feed water, fire tanks. Eighteen kiosks or shops distributed to the pillars are used to sell tickets for ascents to the 2nd and 3rd floors, or to sell small items, such as souvenirs, photographs, etc. Their location is indicated on the plate XVIII, fig. 3. There are two public water closets and urinals, one on the west side of the brewery, and the other on the east side of the Russian restaurant, each with a urinal and a water closet. two cabins.

In addition, for each of the restaurants there are, either for the consumers or for the staff, water closets with sinks, and special urinals, placed at the level of the platform, the others in the basements. The water and the materials of these water-closets are all brought, by pipes, into the pipes x (plate XVIII, Fig. 3) along the inner crossbow of the East and West piers. These same pipes receive the waters of offices and kitchens, as well as, as we have seen previously, the rainwater. The supply of ordinary water for water closets, galleys and kitchens is provided by four tanks placed at the four pillars at a height of 9m above the floor of the 2nd floor, and cubing 2m3 for those of the East and West pillars, and 1 m3 for the other two. They receive water through a lead pipe connected to the corresponding lift line. Automatic plunger valves close the water supply when the tanks are full.

The restaurant drinking water supply is provided by two communicating tanks of about 1 m3, one placed in the South pillar, the other in the North pillar. One of them, that of the South pillar, is fed by a small Worthington pump placed in the basement of the pile 3, which delivers the water into a pipe placed under the water return pipe. the Edoux elevator. The platform fire service is provided by four four-pillar water intakes on elevator pressure water lines. On these taps it is possible to screw four lance handles and produce a jet of a very great height.


The galleries

The galleries are the balconies that go around the floor. Narrower than those of the 2nd, they allow a nice quiet walk with a magnificent viewpoint. If you have a choice of course prefer a sunny day, the view will go further.

To access the galleries you have to go down a few steps, they are below the main level. The rest of this page explains what there is to see around, and casually, there are a lot of interesting things.


The pavilions

There are 3 pavilions on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower. Modern, they measure approximately 20-25m long by 10 wide and as high. They are metal, painted in dark red, but their main features is to have both facades fully glazed, with curved decorative beams. The whole is very successful, the glazing improves the general visibility of the floor and allows especially to see inside the pavilions. Each pavilion has its function. The most interesting for visitors is the Ferrié pavilion, which contains the shop, the fast food outlet, an interesting wall of information on the history and construction of the Eiffel Tower, an electronic version of the book "The tower 300m ", by Gustave Eiffel himself (This is the book that gives all the precise information on this monument, taken from the best source: the builder), a cinema room, a lounge and toilets.

The other pavilions are less accessible: The pavilion of 58, the restaurant. Its name refers to its elevation above the ground, it is 58m high. But it is not visitable. Like the 3rd pavilion, the pavilion "Gustave Eiffel" which has been rented. Regularly public or private companies come here for seminars, business meetings, or leisure. The photos on the story in pictures of a visit shows this pavilion illuminated in blue background, preparing a private concert.

The various elements to visit below are sometimes in the Ferrié pavilion, sometimes in the open air.


What is there to see on the 1st floor of the Eiffel Tower?

The cinema

The cinema room is a large rectangular room (large in relation to others, but small compared to a real movie theater) with white walls on which are projected, with the help of several projectors, images reminiscent of first the context in which the tower was built, then some pictures of the building, then there is an important part on the illuminations over time. The film ends with images of several fireworks that were shot there.

This film lasts about 10 to 12 minutes, and it is continuous projection, that is to say that at the end of the film, the walls remain empty for 10 seconds, then receive a pattern announcing the next session in 1 minute. The interest of the film does not reside in the quality of the images, beautiful but without conducting wire, the interest is more in the impression of greatness than there is, the images being projected on the 3 sides of the rooms at the same time. time. The opposite wall is the main screen, but the two side walls receive the rest of the image, so the eye can turn 180 ° at any time. It is advisable to stand in the center of the room, leaning against the back wall so as not to disturb the other spectators, because it is also one of the characteristics of this room: There are no armchairs. The spectators remain standing, or sit on the carpet, against the back wall. The two openings in this wall allow visitors to enter and exit at will, at any time.

This room is a curiosity, it allows to rest a little while watching beautiful pictures. But the quality of the film could have been better, it is not worth, for example, that of the film projected at the top of Tower Brigde of London, film which tells its construction, the expression of the need to the present day, and that to the a large amount of computer-generated images that mingle with real images.


The information wall

This wall is inside the Ferrié pavilion, so it is accessible by everyone. It is on the right when you enter the pavilion, impossible to miss. The information covers the entire wall separating the main hallway from the shop. It is a wall that we see from a distance since the facade of the pavilion is glazed: So, we see it from the outside, even on the other side of the 1st floor!

It recognizes itself because it is black, and filled with photos, images, drawings, and various texts. In the center, within reach of man, there is a widescreen television screen, touch. This screen displays Gustave Eiffel's book "The Tower of 300m". This is the book he wrote 11 years after the construction of the tower, after the 1900 World's Fair, and in which he relates absolutely everything about his monument: reasons for its construction, the obstacles encountered during the project, the cost of each part, the choice of materials, the organization of the building site, the human resources, the salaries, the scientific experiments that were made there, the modifications made for the 1900 exhibition, the description of the elevators stairs, the least piece, and especially the technical plans accurate, in a fiftieth of double boards. This book was the starting point for the creation of this website, hence the many links above.

This tactile book may interest more than one, we can for example have fun looking for specific information, such as the name of the chairman of the commission in charge of choosing the supplier of the future tour of the exhibition, or that of the person who installed a free air pressure gauge on the tower, when it was built.

Other information is more varied. For example, there is a small text by Roland Barthès, in "La tour Eiffel" (Edition Delpire, 1964, et du Seuil, 2011)

Look, object, symbol, the Tower is all that man puts in it, and this is all infinite. A spectacle watched and looking, useless and irreplaceable edifice, familiar world and heroic symbol, witness of a century and monument always new, inimitable object and constantly reproduced, it is the pure sign, open to all times, all images and in every sense, the metaphor without restraint; Throughout the Tower, men exercise this great function of the imaginary, which is their freedom, since no story, however gloomy, has ever been able to take it away from them.

This text is written on the background of old-time plates decorated with an Eiffel Tower. The wall also shows silver timpani (or that seems to be), a Paris Jazz Festival poster, a curious full Moon on an Eiffel Tower background, and a whole lot of other objects related to the tower. : Scissors, shovels, fans, etc.


The pavilion of the restaurant 58

Second floor pavilion, this building is identical to other pavilions, except that it has a different interior layout. It has three levels (the Ferrié has 2, the Eiffel has only one), and especially was a restaurant. It is not really accessible to the general public. The interest of eating here is essentially the view overlooking Paris on one side, the first floor of the Eiffel Tower on the other, view that is not stopped by the walls since they are transparent on the facades. The style of the restaurant is classy but not excessive, it is not the equivalent of the gourmet restaurant of the 2nd floor, anyway. Still, yeller is the guarantee of a good moment of rest, combined with a meal with a splendid view.

The name of the "58" comes from the distance to the ground, it is 58m high from the forecourt of the tower. Not very original, but fun ...


The Eiffel Pavilion

The Eiffel Pavilion is identical to the others, but it is only a large empty space, praiseworthy at will by private companies, public bodies, or by anyone who needs an original room in Paris . Because of this status it is difficult to enter without having been invited. On the other hand, there is not much to see as its layout depends on the activity that takes place, usually a seminar, a conference, a public meeting, etc.