A Brand New Week, Plus 5 Must Visit French Châteaux’s

Bonjour mon amis!  I hope you had a lovely weekend!  There is something I love about Monday’s ~ it’s the beginning of a new week, new projects are underway, and being refreshed from the weekend.  This weekend, I did some shopping, last minute school shopping for the kids, new bedding for our bedroom, and a few other things.  The weather was rainy and humid so we didn’t make our midnight bike riding event… maybe next year.
On my “to do” list is to visit many of the historic châteaux’s of France.  I’ve compiled a list of my top 5. 

Châteaux de Fontainebleau

From King Francois I and Louis XIV to Napoleon Bonaparte, Château de Fontainebleau was one of the largest and favorite residences of the French sovereigns.  King Francois I hired the best French and Italian artists to embellish every inch of the palace interiors with gilded woodwork and marvelous frescoes and paintings.  Spend the weekend in this charming town for a perefect for a weekend trip.

Châteaux de Chantilly

Located 25 miles north north of Paris, Châteaux de Chantilly and all of its charm is reflected upon its surrounding moat. Built in 1560, the châteaux features lavish rooms donned with exquisite chandeliers and ornate carvings.  A stroll in the lavish gardens leads visitors to the astonishly beautiful fountains, stables, and sculptures.  A must-see is the collection of paintings and book illuminations in the fine art gallery of Musée Condé.
Châteaux de Chenonceau
Known as the most romantic châteaux, Châteaux de Chenonceau was built during the 11th century along the River Cher in Indre-et-Loire.  Also the most visited and photographed Châteaux in the Loire Valley, it is often described as ‘the ladies chateau’ as throughout its history it is they who have most influenced its design and its destiny. It was given to Diane de Poitiers, mistress of King Henry II {son of Francis I}, and Duchesse de Valentinois.  The châteaux was saved from destruction of the Revolutionary Guard by de Poiters, however, was taken from her by the widow of Henry II after his death.  It later became the property of the French Nation.

 Châteaux de Versailles
The most famous and opulent palaces in France, Versailles, is a royal château located in the Île-de-France region of France.  The official residence of the Kings of France from 1682 until 1790, Versailles was originally a hunting lodge, built in 1624, by Louis XIII and expanded by Louis XIV beginning in 1669 that sits on 250 acres of manicured lawns and fountains.  Also home to The Hall of Mirrors, a stunning chapel, The Grand Apartment, and an opera auditorium.  The palace was stripped of most of it’s furnishings during the French Revolution, and Tuileries in Paris became the royal residence. Versailles is now a national museum.  A perfect weekend trip.

Châteaux de Chambord
Built in the Loire Valley, Châteaux de Chambord is famous for its French renaissance architecture, barrel-vaulted ceiling, magnificent north-west facade, and the double helix staircase designed by Leonardo da Vinci.  Châteaux de Chambord, built to serve as a hunting lodge for François I, is a fortress featuring 440 rooms, 365 fireplaces, 13 staircases, and four towers, and is nestled in the largest park in Europe and surrounded by a wall with 6 entrance gates 22 miles in circumference.  Inside, the land was drained and streams diverted to create canals and lakes. These supplied water and fish as well as being for recreational use.  King Francois 1st emblem, the salamander, and initials embelishes the ceilings and walls.

Wishing you a beautiful week ahead!



If you would like help in creating a home you love, please contact me at Brenda@atelierdhautedesign.com

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  • Reply VM Creation Atelier August 11, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    Hello dear friend!:)))
    So fantastic post again,awesome…..
    Beautiful history and really stunning archtitecture!
    Thankyou so much for share it,
    Wish you a very good week,

    Hugs from here,

  • Reply miss b August 12, 2014 at 3:31 am

    What a lovely post which brings back memories of our visits to France. My favourite has always been Chenonceau as I love the way it spans the river.

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