The rebirth of the castle of Blauzac
FR - A few years ago, we had the chance to visit the patio of the castle of Blauzac during the village's annual flea market. It has since been bought out and now houses 3 flats for seasonal rental.
We thought we had to come back and see it in a different light and so made a date with the new owners end of January for our very own trip back in time...
Carefully and tastefully renovated by Anne and Filip, the château is back in the spotlight today, both historically and as a seasonal renting, inventing a new future for itself.
The Belgian couple, who fell in love with the Gard region and previously owned a house in Saint-Maximin, have been the owners of the estate since 2022, and have set about continuing the restoration work which had begun years ago under the supervision of the previous owner, who succeeded in bringing together the 1,200 m2 or so that consisted of the entire original castle, which had been divided into several properties, mainly occupied by the local peasantry.
Some history enlightenment... French National Heritage since 2006, the castle of Blauzac is one of the great landmarks of the village.
"A rare example of civil and military architecture from the late Middle Ages, it has undergone few subsequent changes.
The castle was probably built in the 14th century by Pierre de Deaux, nephew of Cardinal Bertrand de Deaux,
a great dignitary to the popes of Avignon, in local stone, a hard white limestone... "*.
One contractor followed another, skilfully respecting the historic patern of the building while adding touches of modernity, the decoration remaining in the hands of the owners. The sobriety of the decor adds to the elegance of the place, offering an undeniably peaceful and cosy atmosphere, perfect for relaxation.
The contemporary creations of artists chosen by Anne and Filip punctuate the comings and goings in the château: sculptures (photo©Sculpture by Gabrielle Haardt - Tribute to Paul Delvaux), engravings and paintings, such as the one by Nîmes artist Elisa Cossonet, blend perfectly with the centuries-old walls and add a very personal touch to the place.
The furniture, found here and there in flea markets and garage sales, blends in with the more contemporary pieces that linger in both the owners' flat and the rented flats...
"An old tower in the north-west corner seems to predate the construction of the castle itself,
a reminder that there was probably a castle there in the past.
Burnt down around 1382 by the Tuchins, at the same time as the church, the castle was little altered afterwards.
Note particularly the opening of cross windows during the Renaissance and the appearance of watch-towers,
the renovation of the inner courtyard with gallery and staircase in the 18th century
the construction of entrances in the 19th and 20th centuries "*.
The château's current range of seasonal accommodation includes 3 completely independent flats: La seigneurie, La demeure d'Eléazard (named after the 4th Viscount of Uzès, Lord of Aimargues and Saze in the late 14th century) and Sous les voûtes. There's also a shared summer kitchen a stone's throw from the swimming pool, and a large convivial table (photo©Pottery Louise Kaura - Grip) for meals with friends next to the patio.
The first two have unobstructed views of the château and the village of Blauzac from their private terraces, while the vaulted rooms have a more historic setting. A true haven of peace.
Do we have to add that the swimming pool with its outdoor lounge is very tempting on summer's days? And what about the inner courtyard, shaded by a venerable fig tree that can be dreamt of as a siesta protector when the heat is becoming too intense? It's easy to imagine this patio, surrounded by ancient stones, hosting concerts in summer, open-air exhibitions like the Balades d'Art in the gardens of Uzès, or wine tastings... The setting certainly lends itself to such events.
Good to know: Although extensive restoration work has already been undertaken, the castle is sure to have some wonderful surprises in store in the years to come. A number of vaulted rooms on the ground floor in particular will be renewed, opening their carriage entrance doors to visitors and proudly displaying their preserved ribbed windows, where it's not unusual to spot a keystone bearing the coat of arms of an illustrious past...
Many thanks to Anne and Filip for their warm welcome and collaboration on this article.
Sculpture: Gabrielle Haardt - Tribute to Paul Delvaux,
Visuels: @Saloméwithacamera, logo©Château de Blauzac