Château de Maisons-Laffitte
Listed as a historic monument, the Château de Maisons-Laffitte offers visitors a exciting adventure into history, and a delight for the eyes.
How do I get to the Château de Maisons-Laffitte?
Address2 Avenue Carnot
The cradle of Vaux-Le-Vicomte and Versailles
History lovers, don't wait. Take your next outing in the direction of Maisons-Laffitte. There, you'll find the nobility and elegance of this majestic building designed by brilliant architect François Mansart. The "Château de Maisons" is said to be the masterpiece of this precursor of classical architecture, which served as a model for Vaux le Vicomte and Versailles! Built in the 17th century, it was long considered to be one of the most beautiful residences in France. René de Longueil gave a dignified welcome there to King Louis XIV and his court. Then the Comte d'Artois, Louis XVI's brother, became its owner in the 18th century, before the French Revolution, and transformed it. You can admire the dining room decorated by Bellanger in a unique style. The château then had a series of illustrious owners including the Maréchal Lannes, a good friend of Napoleon, and banker Jacques Laffitte. Over the course of centuries, it hosted Mazarin, Voltaire, Lafayette, and many other historical figures.
The "Château de Maisons", purchased by the French state in 1905 and opened to the public for the first time seven years later, is listed as a historical monument. Inside, once you go past the grand entrance hall and climb the great staircase, which is a genuine technical and architectural marvel, you will enter into the King's apartments, the ballroom, the room reserved for the sovereign, and the Cabinet of Mirrors, a mysterious, exceptional room with beautiful décor.
You can go down to the service quarters to find kitchens giving out onto dried moats, and the bathroom, the only one of its kind in the Paris region. You can also discover the château's smaller apartments, including Voltaire's room and the cupola of the great staircase, during special tours from April to September, or upon reservation. Throughout the year the château offers guided tours on weekends, along with exhibitions, concerts, and more.