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On the edge of the village, the castle and its park form a refined enclave in the heart of the rolling plains of the Aube countryside. Like a treasure trove of knowledge for enlightened amateurs, Villemorien brings together all the main principles of the Enlightenment when symmetry and alignments were erected into art. Thanks to recent renovations, the stone and the vegetation have nonetheless freed themselves from this rigorous perfection to allow the comfortable and warm atmosphere of a family home to flourish. Large groups can come together here and create beautiful memories.
My husband's family has been living in the Aube department for over three centuries. We have been patiently restoring the house that we bought in ruins here over twenty years ago. After graduating from the National Landscape School of Versailles, we wanted to build on our experience with a larger garden development project. It was somewhat by chance that we learned that the Château de Villemorien, located less than fifteen kilometres away, was for sale. We did not know it well because it was located in the Sarce valley by the Champagne vineyards, away from our usual routes. It was also not open to the public. Living and working in Paris, we could not have hoped for a better balance between the beauty and the condition of the castle and the park. It had endless possibilities for development, an excellent location in the south-eastern part of the department (the most beautiful in our opinion) and was close to major roads connecting to Paris as well as the north and the south of France.
The castle as it stands today was built during the 18th century. It is one of the very rare examples of classical and homogeneous architecture in the department, especially in such a well-preserved state. Overlooking the village and at the end of a long alley which crosses the main courtyard (which has been converted into French-style gardens) it hides a thirteen hectare park entirely surrounded by walls. The park is made up of English lawns and a wood crisscrossed by a network of paths. The main chateau is surrounded by numerous outbuildings (barns, stables, carriage sheds, coachman's lodge, forge, etc.), but also by the old Orangery featuring a mini replica of the chateau. All the facades, including a Tuscan portico on the south wing, and the roofs are listed as Historic Monuments. One of the salons, known as Sanctuaire de la Folie, was superbly decorated by Hubert Robert, landscape painter to Louis XVI. It is also classified as a Historic Monument.
During the Reign of Terror, Hubert Robert lived here. He was painter to the King and had fled from revolutionary prosecution before returning to grace and becoming the first curator of the Louvre when the palace was transformed into a museum in the early years of the First Empire. At the end of the 19th Century, the castle park was dismembered and at the beginning of the 20th century, the property was bought by Count Armand, a wealthy landowner who sold it to a couple of industrialists at the end of the 1970s. After four years of relative abandonment, the castle was bought in 1982 by an entrepreneur who spent more than thirty years restoring it. By following the rules art, he discreetly provided the property with modern comforts. He also, over a period of twenty-five years, pieced the land holdings of the original park back together plot by plot until it was as Hubert Robert had known and developed it. Since 2019, it has been up to us and our children to continue this adventure.
"A castle just for you" - this is how we see our project, which is unparalleled in the region. Our guests have access to the entire castle and its grounds, including the classified parts, which we leave to them with complete confidence. It brings us great pleasure that his place allows large families or groups of friends to enjoy an exceptional setting, to create their own "castle life" for a weekend or a week in a protected setting and absolute tranquility. I must admit that the respect shown by our guests reinforces our choice to share this inspiring place every day.
The department of Aube is particularly rich in attractions. The city of Troyes, the Champagne vineyards, the artificial lakes of the Seine valley, the Côte des Bar and many other spots offer an infinite wealth of experiences. In the immediate vicinity of Villemorien is the town of Chaource, made famous by its cheese and famous “Entombment”. Golfers will enjoy the Cordelière course and it is considered one of the most beautiful in France. The restaurants of Auberge sans Nom in Chaource itself and Aux Maisons, located in the nearby village of Maisons-lès-Chaource, will delight lovers of local cuisine. Going up the Seine valley to the south-east, just three kilometres from the castle, you will find the Templar Commandery of Avalleur being restored, the architectural beauties of Bar-sur-Seine (which are lesser known than those of Troyes) and can then stop at the Garde-Champêtre, an extraordinary restaurant located in the old station of Gyé-sur-Sein which has its own vegetable garden. You can then continue to Essoyes to visit the house and studio of painter Auguste Renoir. In terms of champagne, we must admit that our favourite is that of the Paul-Marie Bertrand house in Bagneux-la-Fosse, old and faithful. We especially like their Pierre Jean Baptiste cuvée. In nearby Yonne, tours of the castles of Tanlay and Ancy-le-Franc are not to be missed. The lesser known wonders of the former Cistercian abbey Notre-Dame de Quincy and the castle of Maulnes, with unique pentagonal architecture, are also worth a visit.
4000 € - 5500 € per week
The ground floor of the main chateau consists of a kitchen with an adjoining pantry and laundry room, a TV lounge, a small dining room (for twelve people), an office, a billiards room, a large dining room (for twenty people), a library, a music room, a games room, a sitting room and a large reception room. On the first floor are five double bedrooms, each equipped with a dressing room and a private bathroom. On the half floors are a reading room for children, two bedrooms for children and a dormitory. The Logis du Cocher, independent from the main building, can accommodate four people with a double bedroom and a sofa bed in the living room. It is equipped with a kitchen, a bathroom and a separate toilet.