/ Monday, September 17th, 2007
  • There are just a few things that distinguish the Eiffel Tower in Epcot from the original in Paris .
  • The first difference is, of course, the size. Constructed using a copy of Gustav Eiffel’s blueprints for the original tower, the Epcot version is exactly 1/13 the size of the original. Through the use of forced perspective, though, the tower looks taller than it actually is. Another difference between the two towers is the color. The pavilion’s tower is painted, a brownish pink color, which differs from the way the original Eiffel Tower looks today. Years of oxidation have changed the tower in Paris to a greenish color, similar to that of the Statue of Liberty. However, since the Disney pavilion was created to represent Paris in the late 1800s, it was painted the color representative of that period. A final discrepancy between the original tower and the one in World Showcase is one that you would likely never notice. To discourage birds from perching on or making nests in the tower, it was covered with a sticky substance. This also prevents the forced perspective illusion from being ruined, as the birds would look enormous perched near the top of the tower!
  • An area of the pavement in between the France and Morocco pavilion is painted a different color than the rest of the dark-red ground. Why? This color change is supposed to look like a little river, representing the Straits of Gibraltar, which divides Europe and Africa – the continents which are home to France and Morocco respectively.
  • As you meander through the France pavilion, be sure to keep an eye out for the "Living Statues". With an incredible resemblance to real marble, these performers instantly draw a crowd into their silent "theater." Through slow, deliberate, and graceful movements, they strike poses that evoke emotion and amazement. Stand next to one and have your picture taken… if you dare. These talented performers can be a little mischievous given the chance! Don’t take them for "granite," these performers are "marblous." (Sorry… I couldn’t resist!)
  • Unlike many of the attractions and buildings in all four theme parks, the false storefronts in the France pavilion are themed even "backstage," out of view for guests in World Showcase. OK…. why? Well, the real reason is that guests of the Epcot resorts such as the Yacht and Beach Club can see the rear of the France pavilion from their hotel. Since this area can be seen by guests, it must be themed in every detail – visitors should never be able to see the "back" of a building.
  • The pavilion recreates la belle epoque, a glorious era in the late 1800s.
  • Featured are a replica of Les Halles, a once-beloved Parisian market, and a replica of Pont des Arts, a footbridge that once led from the Louvre to the quais of the Left Bank.
  • The Eiffel Tower is only one-tenth the size of the original.
  • The tower is painted with a sticky substance to discourage birds from ruining the illusion of height.
  • The park is inspired by Georges Seurat’s painting ‘A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte’.