Inaugurated for the Universal Exhibition of 1900, the Pont Alexandre III is one of the most emblematic Parisian bridges. It is a real architectural and engineering gem, listed as a French historical monument in 1975 but also the "Heritage of the 20th century", which is an official French label created in 1999 by the Ministry of Culture to award outstanding architectural projects from the 20th century. And last, but not least, the panoramic view from the Pont Alexandre III over the most famous Parisian monuments is just magnificent.
The intention of this bridge was to symbolize the Franco-Russian friendship established by the signed alliance in 1891 between Tsar Alexandre III (1845-1894) and the French President. But, Alexandre III died in 1894, so his son, Tsar Nicholas II, laid the foundation stone in 1896. The engineers Jean Résal and Amédée Alby and architects Cassien-Bernard and Gaston Couisin had a very delicate work to accomplish. They received a lot of demanding instructions. For example, the bridge should be as low as possible, not to hide the horizon, but, at the same time, has to be high enough not to obstruct the boat traffic. Finally, a 45-meter wide and 107-meters long bridge, named after Tsar Alexandre III, was inaugurated for the Universal Exhibition of 1900.
Decorated with 22 sculptures and many allegorical elements, this bridge is probably one of the most majestic bridges in Paris. Every side of the Pont Alexandre III is decorated with impressive 17-meters high monumental pylons. At the summit of every pylon is a gilt-bronze statue representing the Fame of Arts, Sciences, Commerce and Industry. No wonder this most beautiful Parisian bridge was used as a set in many movies and music clips. Let me mention just some of them: “Pret-a-porté”, a movie from 1994 directed by Robert Altman, “Un long dimanche de fiançailles” a French movie from 2004 by Jean-Pierre Jeunet and “Midnight in Paris” by Woody Allen. In 2011, Adele, a British singer, filmed here a clip for her song “Somone like you”, as well as Mariah Carey in 2006, for “Say Something” featuring Pharrell Williams and Snoop Dogg.
Under the iconic Pont Alexandre III, on the right bank, you will find a new Parisian club – The Bridge. Opened in December 2018, this new temple of Parisian nightlife proposes some incredible events, shows and performances. If you want to explore the club scene of the City of Light, then this place is definitely for you. It is open every Friday and Saturday from 11 pm to 6 am.
Cover Photo Credit © iStockPhoto/PaulGrecaud
Like this story?
Get more! Subscribe to our monthly inspiration newsletter.