Opéra Garnier, Paris

4.5 out of 5 stars 135 Reviews

Place de l'Opéra , 75009 01 58 05 49 42

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  • Opéra Garnier
    Opéra Garnier
    by Twan
  • Marc Chagall ceiling, Opéra Garnier
    Marc Chagall ceiling, Opéra Garnier
    by goodfish
  • Auditorium, Opéra Garnier
    Auditorium, Opéra Garnier
    by goodfish
  • TexasDave's Profile Photo

    National Opera of Paris

    by TexasDave Written Jan 4, 2011

    Promoted by Napoleon III and built between 1862-1875.

    Self guided tours are allowed everywhere except the inside of the auditorium itself.
    The best way to see the whole building is to attend a performance.

    Grand Staircase Ornate ceiling detail

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    Sculptures

    by chatterley Updated Sep 1, 2010

    Between the columns of the theatre's front facade, there are bronze busts of many of the great composers, e.g. Mozart, Rossini, Beethoven etc (see Photos 1 and 2 for close-ups of these bronze busts). There are also other clusters of sculptures flanking the sides of the front facade (see Photo 3).

    Bust of Mozart on facade of Opera Garnier Bust of Beethoven on facade of Opera Garnier Sculpture

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  • chatterley's Profile Photo

    Neo-Baroque Opera House

    by chatterley Updated Sep 1, 2010

    2 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Opera Garnier is also known as the Palais Garnier, or the Paris Opera. It also used to be known as the "Académie Nationale de Musique - Théâtre de l'Opéra" and the "Théâtre National de l'Opéra de Paris".

    This Neo-Baroque building was built in 1875, and seats 2,200. Its central chandelier (weighs 6 tons!), huge stage and beautifully decorated exterior all add to its opulence and magnificence.

    It is believed that this building inspired Gaston Leroux's "The Phantom of the Opera", when one of the counterweights for the grand chandelier fell, killing one person. This unfortunate incident, as well as the opera house's underground lake, cellars etc, all served as inspiration for the writer.

    Opera Garnier

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  • MM212's Profile Photo

    Opéra Garnier

    by MM212 Updated Jul 19, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The monumental Opéra Garnier was commissioned by Napoléon III and designed by the architect Charles Garnier. Its inauguration occurred in 1875 and since then, it has been one of the world's greatest and most enviable opera houses. Garnier designed a magnificently ornate building in a neo-Baroque style that was later used as a model for opera houses around the world. Opéra Garnier occupies a strategic position at the end of Avenue de l'Opéra.

    Apollon et la Po��sie Sculptures, May 2007 Op��ra Garnier, May 2007 Place de l'Op��ra, May 2007 Side View, May 2007 Apollon et la coupole, May 2007
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  • Robmj's Profile Photo

    Paris' stunning Opera House

    by Robmj Updated Apr 18, 2009

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This is a magnificent Opera House that was built in 1860 by Charles Garnier.

    Its chandeleirs are some of the best I've seen.

    The Opera house only has seating fro 2,200 people but its stage is massive spanning 172 metres long by 125 metres wide and reaches a height of 74 metres. (564 x 410 x 241 ft).

    The Opera House is a large building, it has a total area of 11,000 square metres (118,404 square feet) with the auditorium comprising roughly half of the total space.

    An underground lake was discovered during construction. The small lake still exists under the opera building and became the hiding place of the 'Phantom of the Opera' in Paul Leroux's famous play.

    The interior of the Opéra Garnier building is even more impressive than its exterior and that takes some beating. The marble grand staircase has a height of 30m. The 54m long Grand Foyer features a mosaic covered ceiling and a large number of beautiful chandeliers.

    Behind the Grand Foyer and below the green copper dome is the lavishly decorated auditorium with red velvet, plaster cherubs and gold leaf. The auditorium's magnificent chandelier weighs a massive six tonnes.

    In all, this is a very very impressive building.

    The Opera House in Paris Opera House Auditorium Celing
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    • Archeology
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  • cinthya_in_victoria's Profile Photo

    Opera Garnier

    by cinthya_in_victoria Written Dec 24, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The outside of the opera is really, really amazing! unfortunately I didn't go inside but that's another reason to go back. To me, it is one of the best architectures you find in Paris, thanks to Charles Gariner.

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  • cpiers47's Profile Photo

    Home of the Phantom

    by cpiers47 Updated Dec 23, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Like so many other tourists, we've only driven by and viewed the famous opera through the windows of our tour bus. But, of course you can still see a show here.

    It's on my huge list of things to do when I return to the city.

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  • iamjacksgoat's Profile Photo

    Palais Garnier

    by iamjacksgoat Written Nov 27, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Unfortunately, I have never been inside of the Palais Garnier. Looking back, I wish I had the time to see the inside! The beautiful Neo-Baroque architecture style is breathtaking! A virtual tour can be taken on the official website; however, this does not replace seeing the real thing. Make sure you visit the Palais Garnier!

    Related to:
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    • Theater Travel
    • Architecture

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  • ruki's Profile Photo

    Opera

    by ruki Updated Nov 19, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    For me it’s one of the most beautiful building in Paris. Opera is designed by Charles Garnier. It’s in neo-baroque style and have 2 200 seat. When you come inside you will see the masterpiece reach grand staircase. Upon its inauguration in 1875, the opera house was officially named the Académie Nationale de Musique - Théâtre de l'Opéra. It retained this title until 1978 when it was re-named the Théâtre National de l'Opéra de Paris.

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  • BeatChick's Profile Photo

    Le Ballet – Opéra National de Garnier - Paris

    by BeatChick Updated Sep 9, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The ballet I saw was fabuleux! Ecole de Danse, one of the most prestigious schools of dance in the world was the featured ballet; I feel very lucky to have seen them and have most likely watched future world-class ballet stars at their inception. Cool.

    During intermission try a coupe de champagne - la di da (about 9€ April 2003 prices). It is such an ephemeral Parisian moment to drink champagne at the Opéra Garnier during intermission. However, you will not be allowed to take the glass back with you to your seat.

    A very nice way to capture the memory of your time at the ballet and a reminder of who & what you saw is to buy a program (10€ - pricing 7 years ago).

    Don't forget to peer up at the Marc Chagall ceiling (painted in 1964) ~ very colorful & otherworldly! You would think Chagall's modern & inimitable work would clash with the Opéra's original Second Empire Baroque style but somehow it works together beautifully.

    If for some reason you did not manage to procure tickets to the Opéra before you came to Paris, you'll find there are people selling tickets (quite literally) at the door as you go in. However, prices are not guaranteed!

    Also, I believe the best time to view this building in all her glory is at night (see photos).

    Guided tours in English provided daily at 3pm.

    Photos: November 2008

    Op��ra de Garnier with old-fashioned lamps Op��ra de Garnier Op��ra de Garnier Op��ra de Garnier Op��ra de Garnier - View from behind
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  • tommyt1971's Profile Photo

    One of the best views of the city...

    by tommyt1971 Updated May 1, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Ok, so the best view of Paris is from the top of the Eiffel Tower, we all know that. There are also the other popular spots to see the city from a high vantage point like the bell towers of Notre Dame, the area in front of the Sacre Coeur, the top of the Arc de Triomphe & the top of the Tour Montparnasse. Aside from the Sacre Coeur, all the places I ment'd will cost you a few euros.

    How about a great view of the city for FREE?? It's at the Galerie Lafayette (prob Paris' biggest dept store), not far from the Opera Garnier. Go into the Galerie & take the escalator all the way to the top, it's about 8 floors. Look for the signs guiding you to the "terace" & you'll come out on the roof of the Galerie. A must-see for photographers! You can get some great shots of the Tower, Sacre Coeur, & other places up there, plus it must be great for sunsets! Bring a telephoto lens!

    Best shot of the Sacre Coeur I got! The Centre Georges Pompidou
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  • Paris92's Profile Photo

    Opera Garnier--tacky, but worth seeing

    by Paris92 Written Apr 13, 2008

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    It’s tacky in a sort of 80s/Donald Trump/Liberace way, but well worth seeing. Interestingly, there’s a strange, legendary rivalry that is apparently true: the opera house is built on a lake (yes, a lake), and a stage hand started fishing in it. Another person who worked there said if one person can use the lake to fish, he should be allowed to use the roof to keep bees, so he now keeps bees on the roof of the Opera!

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  • wilocrek's Profile Photo

    Where the Phantom of the Opera may reside...

    by wilocrek Written Apr 2, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Depending on what tour guide you listen to, the Phantom has his own seat at the Opera Garnier, but whether or not that is the case is besides the point, the Opera house itself is the true spectacle. Built between 1862 and 1875 and designed by Charles Garnier, this opera's ornate interior is adorned with lots of velvet and gold leaf. The impressive ceiling was painted by Chagall in 1964 and is rather ugly in my opinion.

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  • mariev's Profile Photo

    OPERAs de PARIS - GARNIER : the historical one

    by mariev Updated Feb 10, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    In 1860, french architect Charles Garnier won the contest organized by Napoleon III in order to provide a design for a new opera for Paris.
    The outer parts were built from 1861 to 1870 and the opera inaugurated in 1875 (the gap was due to 'la Commune' revolution, during which the edifice was used as prison and storage rooms).

    The overdecorated, mix of baroque, neo-classical and italian inspired style is typical of Napoleon III's era.

    Since 1990 the Opera Garnier has a "baby brother" : the Opera Bastille where most of the lyric performances occur nowadays, while the ballets remain mainly in Garnier.

    The Opera hosts a dance museum and can be visited between performances (the interior decoration is stunning (if somewhat pompous).

    For performances, you can book on-line :
    either directly from the Opera
    http://resa.opera-de-paris.fr/pages/index.asp
    or via FNAC
    http://www.fnac.com/Spectacles/

    Le grand foyer Opera Garnier by night Charles Garnier memorial The seating Grand foyer : the ceiling
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  • Jefie's Profile Photo

    Charles Garnier's Palace

    by Jefie Written May 10, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    In 1860, when Napoleon III created a contest to find the architect that would build the new Paris opera house, 35-year-old Charles Garnier had very little to recommend him other than his imagination and skills; but to everyone's surprise, Garnier did win the contest and the new Opera house was inaugurated in 1875. The heavily ornamented building aligns several different styles, which Garnier himself called the "Napoleon III" style. L'Opera Garnier sits about 2,200 people and was the inspiration behind Gaston Leroux's famous novel "The Phantom of the Opera".

    It is possible to visit the great staircase, the foyers, and the auditorium (when available) of the opera. Admission costs 8 Euros, and you cannot use your Museum Pass. For this reason we skipped on the visit and simply looked at the great staircase from the entry hall - but I do hope I get to see it all someday, and maybe see a production too!

    On Avenue de l'Opera, in Paris (Opera Garnier)
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