dominating the west of Paris from the heights of Ville-d'Avray
Created in the Middle-Ages in a clearing, the town of Ville-d'Avray in the French department of Hauts-de-Seine has, over the centuries, managed to preserve the verdant setting, with its lakes, that makes it so attractive today. The town still features the “Fontaine du Roy”, the fountain that was reserved for the sole use of Louis XVI. Water from this fountain is said to be the best in the area around Paris.
Attracted by its charm, many artists, painters, writers and musicians, such as Jean-Rostand, Edouard-Branly, Boris-Vian as well as Yehudi-Menuhin, have lived there or taken holidays there.
The town is currently on train line L, with Sèvres-Ville-d'Avray station on the Paris-Saint-Lazare-Versailles-Rive-Droite branch line, as well as on train line U, on the La-Défense-La-Verrière line.
“La Chapelle du Roy”
This property was constructed at the end of the 19th century by Louise-Emilie-Delabigne, a famous courtesan during the Second Empire. She was known as “La Valtesse de la Bigne”, a deformation of the French word for “Your Highness” and her surname. Her former home stands on a 4,760 m² plot which looks down on to the entire commune and its surroundings. Looking out over its verdant setting, this 600 m² residence reflects an extremely classical 19th century style with white dressed stone facades, symmetrical windows and French windows as well as a zinc roof terrace, adorned with balusters. A rotunda, with its zinc dome, is another amusing architectural feature. Its porch, stone terrace and wrought iron railings combine all the architectural codes of the wonderful holiday homes at that time. A 20 m swimming pool extends the terrace, surrounded by verdant vegetation.
A majestic, 14 m² entrance hall provides access to a double lounge-dining room, spanning a total floor surface area of 87 m², with golden-coloured, Versailles pattern parquet flooring which reflects the sunlight flooding in through the five, wide picture windows looking out over the property’s verdant garden. The ceilings, more than 4 m high are adorned with moulding. Following on, the library-billiards’ room is another peaceful place for seeking isolation. The American-style kitchen, with its large terracotta floor tiles featuring cream inlaid decoration, exudes a rustic air. Fully fitted, it includes a central oak wood unit, ideal for cooking and preparing dishes. A 3-sided, bow window lets in copious amounts of light. It is a wonderful place for eating whilst contemplating the parklands. A gigantic stairwell, going up to a height of 10 m, provides access upstairs. It is adorned with two masterly paintings, one on each wall. The intricate wrought iron railings feature the coat-of-arms of the “Valtesse”.
This level comprises seven bedrooms, including a master suite, spanning more than 30 m². Most of these bedrooms have their own bathroom and toilet. The ceilings are also very high on this floor. The bedroom windows are in fact French windows, two or three per room depending on the room, some of them having period casement bolts and balconies. The floors are covered with carpet or oak wood parquet flooring, always light in colour. One of the bedrooms has a period painted ceiling whilst the others have moulding and rocaille-style stucco decoration.
A 42 m² master bedroom, with an east-facing view over the garden, is accompanied by two dressing rooms and a bathroom with a toilet. Another smaller bedroom, with a sloping ceiling, exudes an equal amount of charm. A narrow straight stairway, at the end of a corridor, goes up to the zinc roof terrace, bordered by balusters. It provides very easy access for contemplating the 360° panoramic view of Paris and its surroundings.
The basement or garden level is reached via a long stone stairway, going down from the entrance hall. This floor comprises two flats. A first, spanning 65 m², includes a bedroom and its bathroom (toilet), a lounge opening on to the outside, a fitted kitchen and a dressing room. The second, smaller flat spans 43 m². It comprises a lounge, a bedroom with a bathroom (toilet) and a fitted kitchen. A door opening directly on to the outside makes it totally independent. This garden level also has a 12 m² cellar, three storage rooms and an immense, 21 m² boiler room.
4,760 m² of grounds surround this impressive residence. Dozens of oak trees, several hundreds of years old and two delightful gazebos are reminiscent of this property’s past. One section of the garden adjoins Saint-Cloud Park. The stone, south-facing terrace, bordered by balusters, extends the house and acts as a panoramic observatory. Out of sight of onlookers, a 20x6 m swimming pool is installed on high ground on the west side, making it possible to swim amidst the vegetation. Several areas used for parking cars do not spoil the view from the property.
The style of this residence represents the Second Empire in all its splendour without the excesses that a mixture of styles can sometimes produce. The site of this somewhat stately property not only dominates the verdant town of Ville-d'Avray but also the entire west side of Paris. Its interiors are of a princely size and the natural surroundings in which Louis XIII came to hunt are still predominantly in existence all around. Raising their heads from the swimming pool, residents will be able to contemplate a vast panoramic view of the green open spaces on the outskirts of the French capital. Its one and a half centuries of existence has but given the “La Chapelle du Roy” even more splendour.
|Number of rooms||19|
|Number of bedrooms||10|
|Land registry surface area||4780 m2|
|Reception area||103 m2|
|Living space||605 m2|
|Surface Cellar||50 m2|
|Surface Maid's room||23 m2|
|Surface Cellar||21 m2|
Isabelle Capmas +33 1 42 84 80 85
NB: The above information is not only the result of our visit to the property; it is also based on information provided by the current owner. It is by no means comprehensive or strictly accurate especially where surface areas and construction dates are concerned. We cannot, therefore, be held liable for any misrepresentation.