October 4, 2023

By Sylvie Corbet and Jeffrey Schaffer | Related Press

PARIS — France is rolling out the crimson carpet for King Charles III’s state go to at one in all its most opulent and emblematic monuments: the Palace of Versailles, which celebrates its four-hundredth anniversary.

Charles and Queen Camilla’s three-day journey to Paris and Bordeaux, beginning Wednesday, features a grand dinner at Versailles within the presence of over 150 friends within the Corridor of Mirrors.

The palace has not too long ago opened a gallery retracing its historical past, from its creation as a modest looking lodge in 1623 to final century’s key diplomatic occasions — together with the visits of Charles’ predecessors.

French President Emmanuel Macron’s workplace stated Wednesday’s dinner echoes the state go to of Queen Elizabeth II in 1972, when she was greeted on the Palace by President Georges Pompidou. King Charles appreciated the thought of following in his mom’s footsteps, in keeping with Macron’s workplace.

Elizabeth II additionally visited the palace in 1958 and 10 years earlier, 4 years earlier than her coronation in 1952.

Catherine Pégard, president of the Palace of Versailles, praised the “endless story” of the palace that “contains visits from French kids who come to Versailles with their courses, in addition to visits from His Majesty the King of England or vacationers who arrive from Asia and are much less conversant in the historical past.”

“And we have now a narrative to inform every one in all them,” she instructed The Related Press.

Often crammed with a chaotic crowd of photo-snapping vacationers from the world over, the Corridor of Mirrors can be closed to guests Wednesday to arrange for the royal banquet.

On the menu : blue lobster and crab adopted by Bresse poultry and a gratin of cep mushrooms ready, respectively, by French cooks Anne-Sophie Pic and Yannick Alléno, each awarded three Michelin stars. The cheese course will characteristic France’s Comté and Britain’s Stichelton blue cheese. For dessert, world-famous pastry chef Pierre Hermé will put together his rose macaroon cookie, composed of rose petal cream, raspberries and lychees.

Charles’ go to will make yet one more date within the Palace’s lengthy historical past ranging from King Louis XIII, to the French revolution and all the way in which to trendy occasions that’s being offered on its floor flooring into the newly opened Gallery of the Historical past of the Palace.

The gallery has 11 rooms, every thematic and largely chronological, presenting over 120 works aimed toward offering guests from the world over with a direct understanding of the complicated historical past of the palace.

It brings collectively not too long ago acquired works alongside work and artworks that for a few years had gone unseen as they’d been in storage, together with others that at the moment are repositioned and higher enhanced.

Laurent Salomé, director of the Nationwide Museum of the Palace of Versailles and Trianon, stated the exhibit options quite a few masterpieces.

“Our intention was to create a primary nice second of delight for guests. To begin with, as a result of they’ve traveled a great distance. For a very long time, they’ve dreamed of Versailles. We didn’t wish to give them a boring lesson to begin their go to,” he stated.

Some artworks come from the unique model of the palace and its gardens below its nice builder Louis XIV, who determined to broaden his father’s looking lodge.It’s “a historical past made by not only one monarch, it’s additionally an unlimited staff of artists — and the best artists. A benefit of absolute monarchy is to have the ability to collect all one of the best folks on the similar place,” Salomé confused.

As we speak the Palace incorporates 2,300 rooms unfold over 63,154 sq. meters (679,784 sq. toes).