Although Madame de Pompadour, who wished to “relieve the king’s boredom”, was the instigator of this small palace that Gabriel built in the 1760s, it is the memory of Marie-Antoinette that hangs over the building. In 1774, Louis XVI offered the Trianon estate to the Queen who was able to live away – too far away for some – from the Court.
Petit Trianon was built according to the latest "Greek-style" fashion and by revisiting classical art elements. From the ground floor to the first floor of the Attic, architect Anges-Jacques Gabriel created his masterpiece.
Sobriety, reasoned richness of embellishments, order and perfection characterized this new method of building. The break from the rocaille style can be seen inside, particularly in the exceptionally elegant woodwork decor. On the first floor, the reception rooms and apartments of the Queen welcome visitors before they discover the mezzanine and the apartments of the King, located on the last floor, in the Attic.
Surrounded by gardens, Petit Trianon is visible from all sides, a appearance which was all the craze at the end of the 18th century. The four sides are all different. The most sumptuous side faces the French Garden; it is decorated with columns inspired by the ancient temples. The simplicity of north-facing side reminds us that it is the back of the castle which originally faced the greenhouses of the Botanical garden, replaced by Louis XVI with the English Garden.
The Petit Trianon was entirely restored in 2008 thanks to the support of Watches Bréguet, great sponsor of the Ministry of Culture and Communication.