According to IBTImes, the 278 ft. metal structure was designed to float and featured over three million lights (well over 100x the number of lights on the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Plaza). The tradition of a floating Christmas tree on the Rodrigo de Freitas lagoon first began in 1996 and quickly proved itself a major tourist draw.
Only the Carnival festivities and New Year’s Eve celebrations are bigger. Local authorities expect a total of one million visitors to go to Rio to view the elaborate scene of lights.
Those who witnessed the unveiling on December 1st were treated to a six minute fireworks display.
The Christmas tree at Rockefeller Plaza stand at only 73 feet in height but in all fairness it’s not an apples to apples comparison as the latter is a bona fide tree.