You Can Have a Sleepover on the Grounds of the Palace of Versailles

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The Palace of Versailles is as rich in history as it is in royalty. For centuries, the palace has served as a decadent respite for French royalty, first as a quant hunting lodge for a young Louis XIII, then as the alluring palace tourists have come to know today. And now, for the first time in the palace’s long history, guests will be given a glimpse at life as a royal thanks to a new hotel, which has just opened on the palace grounds.

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After a COVID-induced delay, the French luxury hotel brand Airelles has officially opened its sixth property, Château de Versailles, Le Grand Contrôle, located aptly within the grounds of the palace. Sure to be a sought-after vacation destination, the 14-room accommodation will occupy Le Grand Contrôle, Le Petit Contrôle, and the Pavillon des premières cent marches, all of which date back to 1681 when Louis XIV’s favorite architect, Jules Hardouin-Mansart, was tapped to expand the grounds.

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While a stay at Château de Versailles, Le Grand Contrôle will offer many of the same amenities that’s become standard fare at luxe accommodations (think: a 15-meter indoor swimming pool, wellness center, and a signature Alain Ducasse restaurant), the architecture is anything but modern. The goal for the restoration was to bring the once-abandoned buildings into the 21st century, all while maintaining their original glory, for which 1788 serves as a benchmark. In a press release, the hotel notes that “a dedicated scientific committee of experts has been set up to ensure a restoration that is both faithful to Louis XVI and respectful of the priceless historical heritage that Le Grand Contrôle represents.” From the hotel’s paintings and furniture to the 18th-century inspired staff outfits, guests will be immediately transported to Versailles’s heyday. “The attention to detail in terms of accuracy is second to none,” says a press release.

Guests of the hotel will be treated to unparalleled views of the grounds as well as complimentary, private tours of the chateau. According to the hotel’s website, guides will unlock new rooms and gardens for guests each morning before Versailles opens to the public. After hours, visitors have the option to explore the most famous room in the palace—The Hall of Mirrors—sans other tourists. Fans of the hit series Versailles can enjoy exclusive access to costumes used in production for a professional photo shoot. And for history buffs, tours that follow in the footsteps of Versailles legends such as Marie Antoinette, André Le Nôtre, and Blaise-Henri Arnoult are also available upon request.

The price of luxury doesn’t come cheap. Reservations at Château de Versailles, Le Grand Contrôle range between €1,700 and €2,000 (or between $2,000 and $2,400). To inquire about reservations at perhaps one of the most luxurious hotels, visit Airelles’s website.

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