The Arab World Institute was jointly founded by France and 18 Middle Eastern and North African nations in 1980, with the aim of promoting cross-cultural dialogue. It hosts temporary exhibitions and a fascinating museum of Arabic culture and history (4th to 7th floors). The stunning building, designed by French architect Jean Nouvel, was inspired by latticed-wood windows (mashrabiya) traditional to Arabic architecture: thousands of modern-day photoelectrically sensitive apertures cover its sparkling glass façade.
The institute also hosts concerts and film screenings, always with an Arabic theme, and operates as a library and research centre.
Don't miss the incredible views from the top-floor roof terrace (open 10am to 6pm Tuesday to Sunday).