The Queen’s residence
From the Petit Trianon to the Queen’s Gardens, passing by the Hamlet, the Estate, opened in 2006, reveals Marie-Antoinette’s private life. Louis XVI’s wife loved this place where she could return to the pleasures of simple, rural pursuits, away from the pomp of Versailles.
The Petit Trianon and its park are indissociably linked to the memory of Queen Marie-Antoinette. She is the only queen to have imposed her personal taste on Versailles. Sweeping away the old court and its traditions, she insisted on living as she wished. In her Trianon domain, which Louis XVI gave her in 1774, she found the heaven of privacy that enabled her to escape from the rigours of court etiquette. Nobody could come there without her invitation.
The reinstatement of the compound which shows most of the former arrangement: enclosing walls, gates, grills and saut-de-loup [Wolf’s jump] – shows the Petit Trianon domain as a guarded, preserved place, centred on its château. This arrangement shows the eclecticism and refinement of Marie-Antoinette, an art of living linked to free thinking, for the spirit of the Enlightenment was far from absent here.
Since 2007, the domain has been accessed from the Maison du Suisse, that is, the Porter, who not only held the keys of the Petit Trianon, but also had the power to allow visits to it in the Queen’s absence.