Moulin Rouge design and architecture

By Swanzal Aurora

Located in the heart of the Montmartre neighborhood of Paris lies a world-renowned cabaret: Moulin Rouge. 

The Moulin Rouge building, initially constructed in 1889, has a unique and colorful architecture that reflects the exceptional nature of its performances.

Some significant aspects of the Moulin Rouge architecture and design are:

The Red Windmill

The iconic Red Windmill. is one of the most striking features of the Moulin Rouge design and architecture. 

The windmill, which sits atop the building, acknowledges the history of the Montmartre neighborhood, which was once home to many windmills. 

The windmill also symbolizes the cabaret’s lively and energetic performances.


The main entrance of the Moulin Rouge is also quite distinctive. 

It is adorned with colorful mosaics and a large, illuminated sign that displays the venue’s name. 

Above the entrance is a large, arched window that allows natural light to flood into the building, adding to the overall ambiance of the space.


Inside the Moulin Rouge, the decor is as impressive as the exterior. 

The main hall is adorned with ornate moldings, gold leaf and colorful frescoes. 

The Moulin Rouge stage is surrounded by red velvet curtains, which add to the sense of grandeur and luxury. 

Seating at the cabaret is arranged in a horseshoe shape around the stage, allowing all guests to have an excellent view of the performances.

The famous Folies-Bergere ceiling is one of the most iconic features of the Moulin Rouge decor. 

The ceiling, which French artist, Jules Chéret, designed, is a masterpiece of Art Nouveau design.  

It features colorful frescoes and several cherubic figures, which creates a sense of lightness and fantasy.

The building was originally designed by the French architect Joseph Oller, who founded Moulin Rouge. 

Moulin Rouge was intended to be a grand and impressive space that would reflect the extravagant and theatrical nature of the performances.

Lastly, the Moulin Rouge design has undergone several renovations, but the overall architecture has remained relatively unchanged. 

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About the author

Swanzal Aurora is an avid traveler who seeks out thrills and lives a simple, peaceful life. Bright clear skies are her calling.