French President Emmanuel Macron toured the theater of the Fontainebleau Palace with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed al-Nahyan on Wednesday, September 15, to observe the fruits of a cultural partnership between France and the United Arab Emirates.
The UAE financed the renovation of the Napoleon III theater, with an $11.8 million donation in a project that was launched in 2012.
Built in 1857, the theater was used only about 10 times during the reign of Napoleon III before its doors were shut for 150 years.
Architects and conservationists tried to restore the theatre to its authentic origins, with its floral carpets and gilded balconies recalling festive evenings of the Second Empire.
The theater had been renamed after Sheik Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, president of the UAE and brother of the crown prince.