A new luxury hotel opens today on the grounds of the Palace of Versailles, one of France‘s most visited attractions and the former residence of Louis XIV and Marie-Antoinette.
The site of royal decadence and debaucheries before the French Revolution, the Palace of Versailles – now a grand museum – is one of the most visited attractions in France, second only to the Eiffel Tower. With its chandelier-laden Hall of Mirrors and roughly 2300 rooms filled with paintings, tapestries and other treasures, it’s a sight to behold. Even the landscaped gardens are a masterpiece.
Rooms are designed in 18th-century style ©Renée Kemps
From today, it’s the setting of a new attraction: one of the most anticipated hotel openings of the year. The Airelles Château de Versailles, Le Grand Contrôle is a new 14-room hotel, led by architect and designer Christopher Tollemer, who teamed up with the Airelles brand before in the development of their flagship hotel, the five-star Alpine Les Airelles Courchevel. Designed in 18th-century style, with inspiration drawn from Louis XVI’s personal style, the hotel has a private spa by Valmont, and a restaurant from Michelin-starred chef Alain Ducasse (of Le Jules Verne fame).
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Guests will have exclusive access to the palace and its grounds ©Takashi Images/Shutterstock
The luxury hotel is located on the grounds of the palace and will grant guests exclusive access to the famous château ‘after hours’ with private tours, including Marie Antoinette’s much-loved English Gardens and Louis XIV’s Grand Trianon. Each room has its own dedicated butler, and among the experiences on offer are secret dinners in The Orangery Gardens and private concerts in The Royal Opera Theatre.
The en-suite of the Madame de Staël hotel room ©Renée Kemps
The hotel was due to welcome guests in 2020 but the grand opening was pushed back with the pandemic. Now it’s opening a week before France welcomes international visitors back on June 9.
Naturally, a royal sleepover on the grounds of Versailles doesn’t come cheap. Prices start from about €1700 (US$$2070) per two adults per night. For more information, see here.
Guests are treated to the services of their own private butler ©Renée Kemps
Those of us whose budgets can’t stretch that far can still visit the palace and wander its magnificent 18th-century rooms as Château de Versailles has finally reopened to the public after months of closure. Social distancing guidelines apply and protective masks must be worn inside. Tickets can be booked online.
This article was first published on October 12, 2019 and updated on June 1, 2021.
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