Spread over 7800 hectares, the Domaine de Chantilly is peppered with historical monuments, prestigious sporting venues and natural landscapes, each proudly parading an illustrious history, imposing architecture, opulent splendour. This magical setting is ideal for quality private and business functions. The Great Stables can hold up to 600 people under the stunning 28m-high dome.
Among the French tradition of Le Nôtre, the English garden and the Potager des Princes, every outdoor space plays its own role in a wonderful theatre of colours, on the banks of the Saint Jean canal.
The Jeu de Paume amazes with its size and, nearby, the beautiful Maison de Sylvie built in the 17th century in a rustic setting. Here, like everywhere, the brilliance of France's largest principality shines on.
Château de Chantilly
Four names have been associated with the Château de Chantilly over the centuries: d’Orgemont, Montmorency, Condé and Aumale. This cast of illustrious families and individuals fashioned the site and its architecture, allowing it to survive the ravages of time and war.
The Château currently houses the Condé Museum, with 1000 paintings and 5000 drawings and engravings, as well as 3000 works in the Library. The names read like an anthology of European masters from the 15th to the 19th century: Raphaël, Delacroix, Ingres, Watteau, Poussin…
Objets d’art are not neglected either, with Chantilly and Sèvres porcelain and royal furniture. The wishes of the greatest collector of his age have been respected: these treasures are only revealed to those who come to Chantilly to see them. A unique, unforgettable experience.
Grand Stables & Living Horse Museum
Louis XV, Frederick of Prussia and the future Tsar Paul I once dined under the 28m-high dome. At that time, the Grand Stables at Chantilly could house 240 horses and the 500 hounds for the hunts organised on the estate.
Designed by architect Jean Aubert, the Grand Stables are imposing in their grandeur and scale. It took more than twenty years – from 1719 to 1740 – to construct such a monumental edifice, hailed as the finest stables in the world. The building currently houses the Living Horse Museum – a fitting tribute to this outstanding historical and natural heritage.
Built in the early 17th century, the Maison de Sylvie owes its name to the Duchess of Montmorency, known as “Sylvie” by the poet Théophile de Viau, who found refuge and protection here for several years while he was condemned to the stake.
This charming house still has paintings and wall hangings depicting hunt scenes, 18th-century wainscoting and a 19th-century polygonal rotunda. Visitors will enjoy strolling along the pathways in the grounds until they reach this unique place that exudes poetry, melancholy and nature. The Maison de Sylvie has been painstakingly restored and is an ideal venue for receptions and seminars.
In the 16th century, the sport of “jeu de paume”, also known as real tennis, was in its heyday, proving hugely popular with royalty and commoners alike. But it wasn’t until 1757 that Louis Joseph de Bourbon, one of the top fifty amateur players, commissioned the construction of the Chantilly Jeu de Paume, one of the last princely jeu de paume facilities to be built. The sculpted decorations on the façade were the work of silversmith Cousinet. An attractive terrace was added two years later.
The Jeu de Paume was left to abandon, and in the 19th century it became an exhibition hall, its huge spaces providing the perfect setting for monumental paintings. It is currently undergoing restoration work and is preparing to open its doors once again to house gala evenings, family events, concerts and other prestigious functions.
It is said to have served as inspiration for Marie-Antoinette’s magnificent Hameau (meaning “hamlet”) in the Petit Trianon Gardens at Versailles. In 1774, the Prince de Condé commissioned the building of a series of seven thatched cottages in the highly fashionable Anglo-Chinese Garden at Chantilly. These may have been rustic in appearance but they were the height of elegance inside, a luxury hinted at by the generous pink drapes and the profusion of plants depicted in engravings of the time.
The cream of high society came to relax in this delightful pastoral setting. After a lengthy, painstaking restoration process in 2008, the Hameau was returned to its original appearance, stripped of all the changes that had been made over the centuries.
Today, the five remaining cottages serve as the backdrop for charming country picnics, much to the delight of visitors who are captivated by such abundant natural beauty and traditional charm just half a mile from the Château de Chantilly.
The first tracks were marked out in 1834. The stands were gradually enlarged to accommodate changing fashions and requirements, and they can now house some 40000 visitors. Stretching out at the foot of the Grand Stables in the Domaine de Chantilly, the racecourse rolls out its lush green carpet for devoted enthusiasts and one-off visitors alike.
In addition to the prestigious Grand Prix de Diane and Grand Prix du Jockey Club, the tracks are used for training horses every Tuesday – a unique sight not to be missed.
Finally, for fans of competition, there is the Jumping de Chantilly: two annual jump meetings, with the Grand National in April and the five-star CSI (Concours de Saut International) competition in July. Thrills and excitement guaranteed throughout the season!