Paisley Park becomes a museum
Paisley Park Studios, Prince’s home since 1985, which opened its doors to tourists on 6 October, was forced shut following concerns by Chanhassen City Council for public safety from the increased traffic and pedestrians around the property, 7801 Audubon Road.
Tours were subsequently restricted pending formal approval from the local authority to “rezone” the property as a permanent museum and tourist attraction. It is understood during this time 12,000 people have visited the property.
Approval to rezone Paisley Park was unanimously passed at a special session of the council on 25 October. Additional street signage will be installed to direct tourists to the complex. The studios will temporarily re-open on 28 October for tours taking place on Thursdays through to Sundays, and is expected to increase to the full seven-day week in the near future. Tours, which must be pre-booked via the organiser’s website (www.officialpaisleypark.com), are available for $38.50 for basic entry to the studios and $100 for guided and extended visits.
Fans have recently complained about the organisation of the tours, done by the same company managing Elvis’s former Graceland home, which receives 600,000 visitors a year, allowed visitors to not only to touch but stand on Prince’s grand piano for the photo opportunity offered by guides for VIP ticket holders!
A recent feature of the tour, which has received mixed reaction from fans, allows visitors to see the urn that contains Prince’s ashes – a custom made miniature replica of Paisley Park itself. The urn, and a book of Remembrance (signed in by President Obama, in purple ink) are located in building’s atrium, where the tour itself begins. Visitors will not, however, be able to see the elevator where Prince was found dead on 21 April 2016 (it’s hidden behind a tour poster display), nor the second floor of the property containing his actual living apartment.
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