I blogged earlier this month about a Louis XIV armoire formerly owned by late movie critic Gene Siskel. The walnut armoire dates to 1710 and is currently for sale in our gallery. That got me thinking about Louis XIV who was on the throne of France at the time this antique armoire was crafted. One of the greatest achievements of Louis XIV, also known as the Sun King, is the fabulous Château de Versailles or Palace of Versailles in France.
Greg and I loved our trip to the Palace of Versailles and fondly remember promenading through the Hall of Mirrors.
You can see why it’s called the Hall of Mirrors! The Château was originally a hunting lodge for King Louis XIII. But it was his son, Louis XIV who expanded it and transformed it into a beautiful palace. He moved the entire court and government from Paris to Versailles in 1682, and the Hall of Mirrors was the place where Louis XIV impressed guests with his opulent display of royal power and wealth.
The Palace of Versailles remained the center of political power until the French Revolution in 1789, during the reign of Louis XIV’s descendent King Louis XVI and his wife Queen Marie Antoinette. This is the Gilded Study or Le Cabinet Doré. It’s the private chamber where Marie Antoinette played music and relaxed with her children and friends. The room was decorated this way in 1783, and contains items owned by Marie Antoinette including a Sevres vase and a Riesener chest of drawers.
The Palace of Versailles is a visual feast, as you can tell by this picture of the Queen’s Chamber. It’s a perfect example of the Palace’s lavish design. Just imagine: all the ornate embroidery on those tapestries and canopy would have been stitched by hand. With the golden textiles and gilding shimmering all over the room, you wonder how anyone could sleep in there at all! Those guys didn’t believe in understatement, did they?
We know many of our customers are keen travelers to Europe, so if you’re heading to France this year, the Palace of Versailles is well worth a visit, just a short hop southwest of Paris.
Aimee owns EuroLuxAntiques.com with her best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Connect with Aimee on Google+ or you can sign up to receive this blog in your inbox!