The hidden, secret apartment at the top of the Eiffel Tower

Anita Durairaj
Gustave's apartment in the Eiffel TowerCredit: Serge Melki from Indianapolis, USA; CC-BY-SA-2.0

When engineer Gustave Eiffel built the Eiffel Tower in 1889, he constructed a secret apartment at the top of the tower. At the time, it was the highest apartment in the world and offered a view of Paris that was unlike any seen before.

Eiffel built the apartment just for himself. No visitors were allowed. However, exceptions were made for visitors like Thomas Edison.

The apartment was located on the platform at the very top of the tower located just below the spire. It had an open-air balcony and was relatively small at 1076 square feet. The apartment included a living room, a kitchen, a bathroom, and a separate toilet cubicle.

There was no bedroom but the living room could hold a table, piano, couch, and three desks. Most of the apartment's space was taken up by the elevator cabin, the stairwell landing, and other technical installations.

Eiffel never slept in the apartment but it gave him enough space to conduct scientific experiments and host a few rare guests like Edison. Eiffel performed wireless transmission experiments and used the apartment to carry out meteorological tests.

It was in Eiffel's apartment, that Edison demonstrated his talking phonograph. Eiffel also had the famous composer Charles Gounod play the piano during Edison's visit.

The Eiffel Tower secret apartment is not open to the public but visitors can glance at it as they tour the tower. Throughout the years, the apartment has been kept maintained and cleaned. It remains in much the same condition as it was when Eiffel first built it.

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Trained with a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati, I write unique and interesting articles focused on science, history, and current events.


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