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The Château of Villers-Cotterêts:
a large, royal and princely estate

château GB

King Francis I had the château built from 1532, during the Renaissance, and it was later completed by his successor Henry II. It displays similar features to those of the Château of Fontainebleau as the two buildings were constructed by the same family of architects.

Today's château has retained much of the original Renaissance building with the royal apartments and servants' quarters.


The ensemble of buildings, composed of the Renaissance château, the 18th century Jeu de Paume (sports court), and annex 19th century buildings, fits into a rectangle of 195m by 117m.

Francis I, who called it 'My Pleasure', made the château a royal residence. Set in the midst of a large hunting estate (the Retz Forest today), it formed a well-loved holiday home for the kings of France.
Louis XIV, who was a regular to the château, gave it to his brother the Duke of Orléans.

The château in 10 important dates

The château in video

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