In 2015, the city of Paris – within the administrative limits – had an estimated population of 2.19 million residents.However, during the 20th century, the Paris metropolitan area expanded beyond the limits of the commune, and It became the second largest in Europe: in 2013 it had an estimated population of 10.6 million.
The Paris region (Ile de France) is, together with London, the most important economic center in Europe. In 2006, with 500,000 million euros (630,000 million dollars), it produced a quarter of the GDP (gross domestic product) of France.
La Défense is Europe’s leading business district, home to the headquarters of almost half of the large French companies, as well as the headquarters of 20 of the 100 largest in the world. In this area, several of the largest skyscrapers in France are located. Paris is also home to or has hosted many international organizations such as UNESCO.
The city is the most popular tourist destination in the world, with more than 26 million foreign visitors per year. It is usually considered the most beautiful, elegant and spectacular city in the world for having many of the most famous and admired monuments in the world: the Eiffel Tower, the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Champs Elysees, the Arc de Triomphe, the Sacré Basilica Cœur, Les Invalides, the Pantheon, the Defense Arch, the Opera Garnier or the Montmartre district, Disneyland Paris, among others.
Also home to world – renowned institutions: the Museum of the Louvre, the Orsay Museum and the National Museum of Natural History.
According to Philosophynearby.com, Paris has been the most important cultural and artistic center in Western history. French figures such as René Descartes, Voltaire, Victor Hugo, Émile Zola, Alexandre Dumas Jr., Edgar Degas and Claude Monet among others were born, trained or developed their careers there.
From the beginning of the 19th century until the end of the 1960s, Paris was the world center of art. This period received its brilliance from emblematic representatives of French art such as Braque, Duchamp or Matisse and various foreign artists such as Samuel Beckett, Brancusi, Bertolt Brecht, Luis Buñuel, Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, Pablo Picasso and Igor Stravinski.
At this time there was a progressive displacement of the creative centers through different neighborhoods of the city: from Montmartre, the cradle of Cubism, to Montparnasse, the scene of interwar bohemia and surrealism, to Saint-Germain-des-Prés, the center of the movement. existentialist associated with Jean-Paul Sartre, and finally the Latin Quarter, scene of the French May (1968). All these nuclei retain their preeminence within the cultural life of the city.
Many are the authors who have developed their stories with the French capital as the setting. Such is the case of Hopscotch (1963) by Julio Cortázar (1914-1984) and Paris was a party (1964) by Ernest Hemingway. In addition, the city has the largest content of works of art, distributed in its many museums and private collections. Among these treasures, the most outstanding is La Gioconda, by Leonardo Da Vinci, a painting of incalculable value.