Monday, June 5, 2023

Chantilly (Château de)

This past week Ed and I went to France for the French Open (Roland Garros). We met up with friends who came over from England. It was great to see them outside of our normal spaces. We have both traveled to each other's home bases for years. Years (over 32 in fact.)

The tennis was great and we visited the Pompidou Center for a show. But then after that we headed to Reims via Chantilly. And yes, the song "Chantilly Lace" was stuck in my head for the entire day.

Chantilly is a fine little town. Slow and charming in places. But the highlight of the stop was the Château de Chantilly (the Chantilly Fortress / Castle / Royal residence). It was stunning outside and in.

It was built in phases, attack and rebuilt a few times.


Ed, Barbara and I on the garden grounds


One of the Château's most important owners was Henri d’Orléans, Duke of Aumale (1822-1897), fifth son of Queen Marie-Amélie and King Louis-Philippe, the last King of France. He was an avid collector of things. Like almost everything. Paintings, statuary, tapestries, china, bottles, etc. In a different time and monetary means he would be a hoarder with millions of shot glasses, thimbles and snow globes. 

But he was rich and had room to display crap and therefore he was a collector. The insides consisted of the state rooms and then the addition of 13 galleries of stuff. Some are below.

Upper left: love the scones! Upper and lower right: Just a couple of Raphael paintings hanging out!
Lower right: a room of 15th and 16th century portraits.

The upper left is the ceiling in one gallery. All the other images are from the"monkey" room. These are Monkey servants taking care of royalty. A true WTF moment.

Scott's wet dream: A Library that is beautiful and functional.

The Horse "Barns". A stone's throw from the Château are the horse barns. Massive massive horse barns. The Duke loved him some horses!

Our friends.
Also, I don't know why the Horse Stables include an entrance of the old city, but whatever.

Finally, I did not get a great shot of the stables long axis, so here it is from another viewpoint (via wikipedia).

That small wing to the far right is what I have my picture of. But the "barns" could house over 200 horses. In the foreground is the race track. There is a relatively small grandstand on this side.

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