Built in 1861 to replace the opera house on Rue Peletier. Palais Garnier was inaugurated twice. The first inauguration was in 1867, at the request of Napoleon III, as part of the universal exhibition in Paris, but the building was far from finished and only the main façade was shown. The real inauguration took place in 1875, during the Third Republic, in presence of President MacMahon.
The monument draws inspiration from a number of different architectural styles, as dreamt up by its architect, Charles Garnier. The massive façade epitomises Garnier's design, with its myriad sculptures and tones, its staircase and its loggia. The interiors radiate luxury, with the grand staircase, foyer and salons, richly decorated ceilings and the heart of the palace: the auditorium furnished in red and golds in the tradition of Italian theatres.
Since Opéra Bastille was built, the stage at Opéra Garnier is mainly reserved for ballets, but it is also possible to visit without booking for a show. Tickets can be booked online and an audio-guide service is available to discover this masterpiece while listening to commentary explaining its history, architecture, legends and secrets. An unmissable stop during your stay in the Opéra neighbourhood of Paris.