The Louvre Sets Reopening Date As France Continues to Ease Lockdown Restrictions
“I hope that those living in France and soon, in Europe find their way back to the Louvre..."
Paris’ Musée du Louvre will officially reopen in July, nearly four months after closing due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The iconic museum will reopen on July 6 and will require visitors to book time slots in advance, according to officials. Wearing a mask inside will be mandatory as well.
“The Louvre is happy to announce that it will be reopening its doors after these weeks of quarantine that we have all endured,” Jean-Luc Martinez, the president-director of the Musée du Louvre, said in a statement. “Visiting conditions will be adapted to adhere strictly to the recommendations made by health authorities, as we want everyone to feel safe at the Louvre, whether they are coming for work or pleasure.
Entrance time slots can be booked online starting June 15.
“This period has not been easy, but commitment and collaboration will see us overcome the difficulties we are facing,” he added. “Although we have been providing resources on Louvre masterpieces online, nothing can replace the emotion felt when standing face to face with such treasures—the raison d’être of all museums.”
In addition to the museum, which holds famous works like the Mona Lisa, the adjacent Tuileries Gardens reopened on May 31 with the Carrousel Garden opening to the public the day before. Groups in the gardens will be limited to no more than 10 people.
To kick off the Louvre’s reopening, the museum will extend its “Advent of the Artist” exhibition through the summer. In the fall, the museum will continue to feature Renaissance artists with two exhibitions originally planned for spring: “Body and Soul: Sculpture in Italy from Donatello to Michelangelo” and “Albrecht Altdorfer, a German Renaissance Master.”
“I hope that those living in France and soon, in Europe find their way back to the Louvre; now is the time to visit the museum, as we are all in need of a moving experience and real connection,” Martinez said. “Nothing heals the soul better than art and beauty.”
Both the museum and the gardens have been closed since March 13 as COVID-19 spread throughout France and Europe as a whole.
France has recorded more than 189,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, behind the UK, Spain, and Italy in Europe, according to Johns Hopkins University’s tracking of the virus. Last month, the country started lifting its lockdown, allowing people to leave their homes and many to return to work with social distancing in mind.
On June 2, the country lifted restrictions even further, allowing for the opening of many restaurants, bars, and cafes, as well as swimming pools, beaches, and museums.
If you can’t get the Louvre right when it opens, the museum offers virtual tours on its website. These options have proved to be popular as museum officials recorded 10.5 million visits to the site between March 12 and May 22 — nearly as many as all of 2019, which saw a total of 14.1 million visits.