The Tour Saint-Jacques is one of the must-see buildings during a stay at the Hotel Paris France. Standing in the centre of the eponymous square, this Flamboyant Gothic tower reflects the architectural beauty of the 1500s and is a national historic landmark.
Discovering the Saint-Jacques Tower
In the 12th century, a church dedicated to Saint-Jacques-la-Boucherie was erected in the heart of Paris between 1509 and 1523, complete with a magnificent bell tower. Sold for building materials in the 1790s, the church was demolished. Only the bell tower was preserved. This is the Saint-Jacques Tower that we can still admire today.
Devotees participating in the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela would gather in front of this building before setting off. Today, the tower is among the architectural wonders of Paris. At its base, you can see a statue of Blaise Pascal. This is a nod to the atmospheric pressure experiments the French scientist conducted at the site. In the north-west corner, Saint James the Greater watches over a small weather platform dating from 1891. If you look at the four angles, you will discover carved symbols. The lion represents the apostle Mark. The bull symbolises Luke. The eagle is attributed to John. The angel pays tribute to Matthew.
The statues and gargoyles visible on the walls of the Tour Saint Jacques were restored in the 20th century, hence their excellent state of preservation.
A little effort for an exceptional experience
Guided tours take place regularly, beginning at the tower’s base with the guide telling the story of this remarkable monument and how it evolved over the centuries. After this presentation, you’ll be led to the top of the tower. To get there you must climb some 300 steps, but what awaits you on arrival is breathtakingly beautiful. More than 50 metres high, the view over Paris is stunning.
Paris France Hotel, a 3-star hotel ideally located at the centre of Paris