Until the second, without elevator. It is the symbol of France which begins its partial deconfinement this Thursday from 10 am: the Eiffel Tower. After more than three months of closure, the Parisian iron lady who sits on the Champ-de-Mars will once again welcome visitors into her womb. But coronavirus requires, sanitary measures are required and the reopening only partial.
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Strict sanitary measures
Obligatory mask from 11 years old, impossible to go beyond the second floor, limitation of the number of visitors on the floors and on the square, daily cleaning and disinfection of public spaces ... The measures are strict and must reassure tourists, but very few for Lucas and Chloé, who came from Montpellier to visit the capital. "These days are not really a good idea", judges at the microphone of Europe 1 the young man who watches the workers install barriers around the tower under a blazing sun. "The coronavirus is not gone, it is still there," adds his partner.
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But the couple's refusal may also reflect a lack of confidence in their physical capacities, since visiting (part) of the Eiffel Tower, it is deserved. As the elevators are no longer accessible, it is no less than 674 steps that you have to climb one by one to reach the second floor of the Parisian iron lady, and enjoy one of the most beautiful views of the capital.
The revival of a local economic ecosystem?
But no matter that this visit is a physical challenge, it's a whole economic ecosystem that will wake up at the same time as the hostess, hopes Louis Joubert, owner of a kiosk selling cakes and refreshments. "Business is very hard, we don't even pay the personnel costs" indicates with a weary glance towards a Champ-de-Mars empty of foreign tourists. But for the director of the tower, the recovery will not be dazzling. "Usually in the middle of July, we are at 23,000 visitors. I think that for the first day, we will be at 3,000 4,000," he explains, based on online reservations.