Palaces, Villas and Castles

Castle of Vaux-le-Vicomte

Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte is a magnificent French castle located in Maincy, near Melun, in the Île-de-France region of France. It is famous for its extraordinary architecture, beautiful gardens and rich history. The castle was built in the 17th century for Nicolas Fouquet, superintendent of finance under Louis XIV.While he was superintendent of government finances he had the castle rebuilt and expanded, including rooms for the king and a beautiful French garden surrounding the castle, designed with the science of optical illusion, giving a special perspective on the gardens from the castle.He was known for lavish parties and the grandeur of the estate, although it was this castle that led to his death. Indeed, the king was led to believe by Jean-Baptiste Colbert (who would later replace Fouquet as minister) that the lavish parties and the chateau itself had been paid for by the misappropriation of public funds. Fouquet was imprisoned for life, while his family was exiled.Ten years after his exile, Fouquet’s wife and son were able to return and reclaim their property; however, when her husband died, he sold the chateau to Marshal Villars. Eventually this large structure came to belong to the Sommiers family, whose descendants still own the Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte, now reaching the fifth generation of ownership.Designed by architect Louis Le Vau, with interior decoration by painter Charles Le Brun and landscape architecture by André Le Nôtre, the Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte is considered a masterpiece of classical French architecture and served as a model for the construction of the Palace of Versailles.Visitors to the chateau can explore its grand halls, intricate rooms and beautiful gardens. The interior features elegant reception rooms, including the Salon de Mars, the Salon de Mercure and the Salon d’Hercule, each decorated with opulent ornaments and works of art. The gardens, designed in the classical French style, offer large expanses of lawn, geometric patterns, fountains and precisely manicured hedges.Today, the Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte is open to the public and attracts visitors from all over the world who come to admire its architectural beauty and immerse themselves in its historic atmosphere. The castle also hosts various events and activities, including candle-lit evening tours, classical music concerts, and exhibitions.If you plan to visit the Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte, it is advisable to consult their official website for the latest information on visiting hours, ticket prices, and any special events or restrictions in place.

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