Chateau de Chantilly

The Château de Chantilly is an historic château located in the town of Chantilly. The Grand Château was destroyed during the French Revolution and rebuilt in the 1870s, being donated to the Institut de France by the owner, the Duc d'Aumale upon his death. Patrt of his bequest was the the château continued to house the Duc's extensive art collection after his death, and to remain open to the public. Today that art collection is shown in the Musée Condé, which is one of the finest art galleries in France, with paintings by Botticelli and Raphael. The Petit Château next door houses many original manuscripts and books, including a Gutenburg Bible. The Château sits in a park, featuring extensive parterres and water features, which was laid out principally by André Le Nôtre. It also contains a French landscape garden with a cascade, pavilions, and a rustic ersatz village, the Hameau de Chantilly, which inspired the Hameau de la reine of Marie Antoinette in the Gardens of Versailles. The estate overlooks the Chantilly Racecourse and the Grandes Écuries (Great Stables) which contains the Living Museum of the Horse. According to legend, Louis Henri, Duc de Bourbon, Prince of Condé believed that he would be reincarnated as a horse after his death. In 1719, he asked the architect, Jean Aubert to build stables suitable to his rank. These 186m long stables are considered by some as the most beautiful in the world. The Château has been in the public eye in recent years, with concerts by Pink Floyd in the nineties, a part in the James Bond film 'A View to a kill', and it has played host to celebrity weddings including Ronaldo's in 2005.

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