Home Entertainment Windmill sails mysteriously fall off Paris’ iconic Moulin Rouge cabaret: “It’s sad”

Windmill sails mysteriously fall off Paris’ iconic Moulin Rouge cabaret: “It’s sad”

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Windmill sails mysteriously fall off Paris’ iconic Moulin Rouge cabaret: “It’s sad”

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Paris — A famous landmark in the French capital looked very different Thursday morning. The sails of the iconic Moulin Rouge fell to the ground overnight – leaving the red windmill looking unusually bare.

The entertainment venue’s owners said it was unclear how the sails fell — taking the first three letters of the Moulin Rouge sign with them – but they vowed to repair the structure and said there was no further damage to it.

The bar on the roof behind the windmill closed at midnight and the last cabaret show ended an hour later — and the structure was still intact at that point.

People take pictures of the landmark red windmill atop the Moulin Rouge, Paris' most famous cabaret club, after its sails fell off during the night in Paris
People take pictures of the landmark red windmill atop the Moulin Rouge, Paris’ most famous cabaret club, after its sails fell off during the night in Paris, France, April 25, 2024.

Benoit Tessier/REUTERS


“It’s sad, just sad,” said Danish tourist Lars Thygesen as he looked at the building on Thursday.

“I hope they will build it up again, so it will be as it always has been, the old Moulin Rouge,” added his partner Lise.

Moulin Rouge’s director, Jean-Victor Clerico, said there was no sign of intentional damage, saying the collapse was “obviously a technical problem.”

The night view of Moulin Rouge cabaret
A file photo shows Paris’ Moulin Rouge cabaret club, with its sails still in tact.

Bruce Yuanyue Bi/Getty


“We’ll rise to the challenge,” Clerico said, according to French news agency AFP. “The Moulin Rouge is 135 years old, so it’s seen all kinds of things.”

The incident comes only about three months before the opening ceremony of the 2024 Paris Summer Olympics, which are expected to draw millions of visitors to the city. 

The Moulin Rouge’s famous daily cabaret shows draw hundreds of thousands of visitors every year and, as AFP notes, thousands more stop to admire and snap pictures of the quirky building at the foot of Paris’ Montmartre hill from the outside.

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