You may have thought that the Louvre Palace in Paris had only one glass pyramid. But an inverted pyramid, you must be joking! Of course, I am talking about the one that stands at the centre of the Cour Napoléon, serving as a main entrance to the prestigious museum. Until the release of The Da Vinci Code bestseller, not many visitors knew of the existence of a second similar structure: the inverted pyramid of the Louvre. Let me show you where it stands…
The Inverted Pyramid of the Louvre in Paris
The upside-down pyramid cannot be seen from outside as it is bordered by hedges marking the centre of a roundabout of Place du Carrousel. To see it in all its glory, you need to find your way underground!
Go down the stairs near the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel and follow the main underground shopping arcade.
You will reach the inverted pyramid that is placed in a vast hall.
The pyramid was designed as a well of light by the Chinese-American architect Ieoh Ming Pei (who also designed the great pyramid of the Louvre – the upright one!)
The crystalline pyramid weighs 30 tonnes. Its tip is suspended 1.4 metres above floor level. A small stone pyramid measuring 1 metre was placed just below and seems to touch the tip of the inverted pyramid.
The inverted pyramid of the Louvre is featured in The Da Vinci Code bestseller by Dan Brown. The author set up Mary Magdalene’s tomb in a hidden chamber situated under the small stone pyramid. Of course, this is pure fiction!
Where to find the Inverted Pyramid of the Louvre?
The upside-down pyramid is situated at the centre of the Place du Carrousel and is not visible from street level.
Access to the underground shopping mall by the stairs situated North and South of the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel.
Closest métro station: Palais Royal – Musée du Louvre (lines 1 and 7).
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