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The Families

"Dear visitors,
We are very pleased to welcome you into our home to make you participate in its history and share ou passion.
Opens to the public since 1993, the Château is first and foremost a living space where three generations live alongside each other. When you cross the threshold, you enter a furnished home that has kept the inprint of the different periods of its construcion. You will also discover the largest mural painting gallery of the area and you will escape thanks to the diverse activities proposed. Through this site, we hope to give you a flavour of the journey that is the Château de Gizeux.

Géraud and Stéphanie de Laffon
Between passion and commitment, authenticity and modernity.

From 1334 to the end of the 17th Century

The renowned du Bellay family arrives at the château around 1334.

The du Bellay family, related to the famous Renaissance writer Joachim du Bellay, lived at Gizeux for almost 350 years and made many alterations to the château in order to modernise their home.

Under the "reign" of princess Marie d'Yvetôt, maried to René du Bellay in 1585, the château is luxuously decorated by Italians paintors around 1610 and a court life begins at Gizeux.

The du Ballay are ruined by their sumptuous way of life and they have to sell the château at the end of the 17th Century.

From the end of the 17th Century to 1723

The château is sold at the end of the 17th Century to Anne de Frézeau de la Frézollière, widowed from René de Rouxellay, countess de la Roche-Millay.

Anxious for her son to have an artistic education, Anne de Frézeau comes to the countryside and invite a school of painting to decorate the famous Galerie des Châteaux (Gallery of Castles) around 1685.

After her son's tragic death, the countess goes to the covent and let her grandson sell the château once more.

From 1723 to 1786

In 1723, the château is bought by René de Grandhomme, newly anoblished by king Louis XV and who made a fortune in Santo Domingo.

It is his son, Simon-René de Grandhomme that had the staff quarters built and converted the parlors of the ground-florr as they are known to us today.

Without heirs, his daughter, the Duchess de Brancas, gifts the château to her goddaughter Julie Constantin de la Lorie upon her wedding to Louis-Gabriel de Contades in 1786.

From 1786

It is Julie Constantin de la Lorie that lived in the château during the French Revolution.

The young lady kept the impressive home by herself while her husband joined the princes' army and did'nt came back until 1801 after having been exiled to Santo Domingo.

After the Old Château was vandalized, she had the panelline of the Galerie François Ier (Francis Ist Gallery) concealed with the help of the village inhabitants.

The château has stayed in the family since 1786.

Marie Feuillant married a Contades-Gizeux in 1856.
She is the one who had the chapel decorated and had the chimney of the Galerie François Ier restored.

During World War Two, the château ic occupied by the Nazis. It didn't stop our grand-father to hide resistants ine the cellars thanks to a tunnel that opens in the forest.

The de Laffon family today...

In 1992 my mother, owner of the Château, asked me to help her in the difficult task of safeguarding this monument.

My wife and I, together with our six children, have accepted to take up this formidable challenge and to fight in order to give a future to this beautiful but fragile home!

As a result, our aim is to bring the château back to life in order to protect it for the better.

Our first initiative was to open it to the public in 1993 and offer several cultural activities to families and children.
In 2003 I became the owner of the château and its park. We made the decision to live here all year long. At the same time, we launched our project of opening Guest Romms. In 2008, I decided to give up my work in order to invest myself full-time into the economical development of Gizeux. 
This risky adventure highlights our determination to be able to welcome the visitors on the best terms possible and to share our passion and write with them today’s and tomorrow’s history of Gizeux.

Château de Gizeux - 37340 Gizeux

Château de Gizeux

37340 Gizeux

00 33 (0)2 47 96 45 18



The Château is open to visitors
every day from 10:30AM to 6PM

Our guest rooms in the Château are open!
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