Eiffel Tower visitor numbers climb to pre-Covid levels
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A major paint job on the "Iron Lady" has resumed after an interruption during the pandemic due to high lead levels, it said, with the aim of having the landmark look its best in time for the 2024 Paris Olympics.
It received an average of more than 20,000 visitors per day in October, up from 13,000 during the summer when curbs kept down numbers allowed into the tower's lifts.
October weekend numbers were better than in 2019, Sete said.
One big factor was the return of American tourists, who accounted for 10 percent of overall visits, as well as tourists from nearby European countries.
But overall visits this year are still only expected to reach 1.5 million, against 6.2 million in 2019, leaving the tower in dire financial difficulties.
Sete expects to post a loss of 75 million euros ($87 million) this year, adding to 2020's loss of 52 million euros.
Sete has arranged a near 60-million-euro recapitalisation by the city of Paris, its major shareholder, plus a government-backed loan of 25 million euros.
To make up for the shortfall, the operator has asked for help elsewhere, notably from the French government. "Discussions are ongoing," it said.