Tour Montparnasse – The Ugly Giant of Paris
Tour Montparnasse is the common name of the Montparnasse Tower which has been the tallest building in France and one of the taller buildings in Europe, since 1972 when it was built. It is situated in the heart of Paris, the French Capital and its picture is always included in every travel guide about the City of Lights.
The Tower is 210 meters tall building located in the Montparnasse District. Its construction begun in 1969, and lasted for three years. It was designed and built by the known architects Louis de Marien and Eugen Beaudouin. It features fifty nine floors which are mostly occupied by offices of companies and corporate groups.
On the 56th floor there is a lovely restaurant that offers breathtaking views to its guests, while the last floor hosts an observatory for those who want to see the city of Paris from above. According to the studies, someone who stands on the top of the building can see up to 40km away, and can even see the aircrafts at the Orly airport. There is also a helicopter landing spot next to the observatory.
Tour Montparnasse has been heavily criticised mostly due to its simple but somewhat rigid architectural design. According to its accusatory, the building is huge and doesn’t fit to the architectural style of Paris, or the surrounding buildings and landscape. This is the reason why soon after the construction of the building the French Parliament banned the future construction of any similar buildings and skyscrapers. There is an ongoing joke in France about the Tour Montparnasse: it says that indeed it offers the best view to city just because when you stand on it you cannot see the Tower. According to the legend Guy de Maupassant made the same remark, although he was a big hater of the Tour Eiffel as well.
The Tour was voted as the second ugliest skyscraper in the world.