By Jay Jones
10:00 AM EDT, September 6, 2013
Amid plenty of fanfare, Las Vegas’s half-size replica of the Eiffel Tower welcomed its 10-millionth visitor Thursday.
Five-thousand red, white and blue balloons floated skyward as the special guest, Martin Layton, a tourist from Britain, arrived with his fiancée, Sarah Connell, at the half-scale lookalike at Paris Las Vegas. They were greeted by colorfully dressed showgirls from "Jubilee!" along with other entertainers.
David Hoenemeyer, president of the resort (which opened 14 years ago this month), presented the couple with a celebratory, seven-day trip to Paris. Layton and Connell, who are getting married during their trip to Las Vegas, announced they would use the prize for a honeymoon.
The Eiffel Tower Experience is open 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. daily, weather permitting. The observation deck, 460 feet above the Strip, offers great views of nearby attractions including the Fountains of Bellagio just across the street.
Tickets cost $11.50 ($7.50 for children and seniors) for arrivals before 7:15 p.m. After that, the cost climbs to $16.50 ($11.50 for children and seniors).
The original Eiffel Tower opened in 1889. Standing 1,062 feet tall, it is Paris’s most iconic landmark. It has welcomed about 250-million visitors.
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