It began life as a modest hunting lodge built by Louis XIII in 1623, but under the ownership of Louis XIV, Versailles became a magnificent palace renowned throughout the world.
Over the course of more than 100 years, and during numerous successions to the throne, the building was embellished and enlarged to accommodate the court of Louis XIV, Louis XV and Louis XVI. Now considered one of the finest achievements of French art, the Palace of Versailles remains a cultural symbol of royal splendor.
Set within the gates of Versailles, Le Grand Contrôle was built in 1681 by Jules Hardouin-Mansart, Louis XIV’s favorite architect and an icon of French classicism. The grandiose building once played host to Europe’s political and cultural elite, from ambassadors and artists, to musicians, writers and scientists of the Enlightenment.
Now, more than two centuries later, Le Grand Contrôle has been entirely restored, offering guests an exclusive peek into the world of Versailles. Unlock access to the 2,000 acre-strong gardens, retrace famous footsteps and explore the palace halls and apartments like never before.
With 14 sumptuous Rooms and Suites replete with period furnishings and fittings for a royal stay, guests are invited to step back in history, but one coupled with contemporary comforts.
Paying homage to the rich history, every element at Le Grand Contrôle touches upon its former 18th-century splendor, from carefully sourced interiors, right down to the uniforms worn by the welcome team. Furniture and paintings that once had a place in the palace have been reunited with their former home. Technology has been thoughtfully considered throughout; in place of TVs, guests will instead discover views of the Orangery Garden and the Lake of the Swiss Guards beautifully framed by drapery, whilst the lighting has been sensitively designed in keeping with 18th-century styling.
Throughout their stay, guests will enjoy revamped takes on royal classics - from the Alain Ducasse restaurant to the Valmont Spa. As always, the art of French service is taken to sublime levels as guests are treated like nobility at every opportunity.
When it comes to sustainability, historical traditions have been replaced with 21st-century thinking, with new technology embraced throughout the hotel. Geothermal energy has been used to heat the building whilst LED lights give new life to antique chandeliers. Ingredients for the restaurant have been sourced from local suppliers, and guests will find zero single-use plastics in rooms.
Photos courtesy Airelles / Photographed by Renee Kemps