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This past year has left us dreaming of far-flung destinations and luxurious stays of all kinds, but we've landed on our first international getaway spot once the world is ready to travel again. On June 1, French luxury hotel brand Airelles is opening its sixth property, Château de Versailles, Le Grand Contrôle, which is one of the year's most anticipated luxury hotel openings and sure to become the brand's crown jewel. But while this property offers many of the standard amenities we've come to expect from a five-star accommodation—a culinary program from a celebrated chef (in this case, Alain Ducasse), a fabulous spa created in partnership with a Swiss luxury skincare brand (Valmont)—this hotel offers experiences, accommodations, and views like no one else.
Château de Versailles, Le Grand Contrôle is the first hotel of its kind in that it's actually located on the grounds of the iconic palace, boasting views over the Orangery, the Pièce d’Eau des Suisses, and the Château itself. Anticipated to be one of the world's most sought-after addresses, guests will have the opportunity to retrace the footsteps of Louis XIV and Marie Antoinette unlike ever before, as the hotel features an impressive program of once-in-a-lifetime experiences that are exclusive to guests. A stay awards you the opportunity to reserve private tours of the Trianon and the Château itself, indulge in signature spa treatments inspired by Marie Antoinette's own beauty rituals, and enjoy after-hours access to the Hall of Mirrors, among other exciting offerings. Plus, the hotel prides itself on taking the art of French service to sublime levels to ensure every guest is treated like European nobility, be it at Sunday brunch, afternoon tea, or happy hour.
The hotel houses its 14 rooms and suites across three buildings that all date back to 1681, when Louis XIV's favorite architect, Jules Hardouin-Mansart, was tapped to expand the grounds: Le Grand Contrôle, Le Petit Contrôle and the Pavillon des premières cent marches. Airelles hired the acclaimed French designer Christophe Tollemer to restore and design the interiors of this beautiful hotel, and he found his inspiration for the project from the nearby Petit Trianon Palace and Louis XVI's personal style—particularly focusing on the year 1788 as a benchmark, when Marie Antoinette redecorated Petit Trianon and Le Grand Contrôle's last inventory. Tollemer spent countless hours poring over the archives at Château de Versailles to bring the property back to life in an authentic and respectful way.
France's best and brightest artisans, craftspeople, and makers were commissioned to restore and re-create the historical features throughout this breathtaking hotel, from the floors and fabrics to the stonework and wood paneling. Every inch of each room is decorated to reflect Louis XVI's 18th-century aesthetic and features period furniture, artwork, artifacts, and even colors and fabrics respective of the period. Masion Pierre Frey re-created the original patterns of the era's most iconic wall hangings that will be displayed in each room, which are named for prominent socialites, political figures, and celebrities associated with Château de Versailles. Several of the honored patrons include Madame de Fouquet, a French socialite who married Marquis de Fouquet (an American Revolutionary War hero) and Madame de Staël, a famous writer and philosopher who was a close friend of Marie Antoinette.
Visit Airelles's website to get in touch about securing an invitation to reserve a room at what's sure to be one of Europe's, if not the world's, most luxurious hotels. Rates start at €1,300 per night, including daily breakfast, with impeccable views over the Orangery, no less.
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