This square at the foot of the Champs-Élysées was originally named after Louis XV. It later became the Place de la Révolution, where crowds cheered as Louis XVI, Marie-Antoinette, and some 2,500 others lost their heads to the guillotine. Renamed Concorde in 1836, it got a new centerpiece: the 75-foot granite Obelisk of Luxor, a gift from Egypt quarried in the 8th century BC. Among the handsome 18th-century buildings facing the square is the Hôtel Crillon, which was originally built as a private home by Gabriel, the architect of Versailles's Petit Trianon.
Rue Royale, Paris, 75008, France
Sep 1, 2014
Changed from Place Louis XV in 1755, then to Revolution Square, and finally to Place de la Concorde, it symbolizes reconciliation and national harmony. The largest square in Paris, it became, just after the Revolution, a trendy place for public execution. Louis XVI, Marie-Antoinette, Danton and Robespierre were all guillotined there. Located inside de World Heritage Site. In the mid-19th century it took its current appearance, drawn by Louis-Philippe.
The obelisk was given by the Pasha (viceroy) of Egypt. 3,300 years old, this monumental obelisk covered with hieroglyphics is 23 meters high as was erected in 1836. It took four years to arrive in France from Luxor. Two monumental fountains adorned with mermaids and goldfish decorate the square: the Fontaine des Mers (Fountain of the seas) and the Fontaine des Fleuves (Fountain of the rivers) celebrate maritime and river navigation. It is composed of eight statues representing eight French cities. Located at the foot of the Champs-Elysées, the square is now surrounded by prestigious hotels and fits nicely within the urban plan, respecting the view from the Tuileries to the Arc de Triomphe. Lighting up the dark in the age of electricity, the then prestigious square became a symbol of the City of Light.