The French may be happy to snarf Le Big Mac (France is the second biggest market for the fast feeder, after the U.S.), but that doesn’t mean they want the scent of McDonald’s wafting past the Mona Lisa. News that McDonald’s will open next month in the underground approach to the Louvre has caused an outcry among museum staff and local community. The golden arches will represent “American cuisine” in a new food court and will also include a McCafe, the brand expansion that’s expected to add $1 billion to the company’s bottom line.
Positioning itself in front of 8 million hungry, gawking Louvre visitors each year is an obvious win, but getting its attached McCafe on museum property may be the biggest coup, as McDonald’s seeks to solidify its credibility in the espresso-drinks arena. Starbucks sparked major grumblings last year–including a petition–when it opened just outside the museum’s entrance.
“This is the last straw,” one art historian who chose to remain anonymous told the UK Telegraph. “This is the pinnacle of exhausting consumerism, deficient gastronomy and very unpleasant odours in the context of a museum.” Sales will quickly tell if tourists agree that McDonald’s diminishes the Louvre experience–but we wouldn’t bet our McNuggets on it.
[via UK Telegraph]
Photograph: Danielle Paris, Senior Group Manager of Product Innovation and Development; and Sofia Therios, Director of Marketing, Brand Content for McCafe. Photograph by Saverio Truglia.