Nestled on the outskirts of the Orléans forest, the Château de Chamerolles is a magnificent Renaissance castle that has succeeded in conserving its medieval heritage. It was built between 1500 and 1530 on the site of an ancient medieval fortress under the authority of Lancelot du Lac, chamberlain to King Louis XII and governor of Orléans, who wished to covert the old structure into a leisure castle corresponding to contemporary architectural styles. With its polychrome brickwork and open gallery, the château of Chamerolles is reminiscent of the Louis XII wing of the royal château of Blois. Its moats and the outlines of its corner towers hark back to medieval times.
During the Wars of Religion the grandson of Lancelot, Lancelot II, transformed the château into a Protestant gathering place; in 2019, the epoch is brought to mind by a chapel whose painted Tablets of Testimony are the oldest in France. Up until the late 17th century, Chamerolles remained in the hands of Lancelot’s descendants; in 1672, it became the property of Jacques Saumery, brother-in-law of the renowned finance minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert. A century later, the castle was acquired by the Lambert family; as of 1924, Gaston Jessé-Curély was the latest proprietor.
Having been occupied, ransacked and despoiled during World War II, in 1970 the château of Chamerolles was put up for sale; as of 1976, the city of Paris was juridically responsible for an abandoned Chamerolles, which was falling into ruin. In 1987, it became the property of the Loiret departmental council, which initiated with a large-scale restoration program. Five years of work contributed to discovery of a form of transitional architecture, between medieval heritage and Renaissance innovation.
In our times, Chamerolles is dedicated to the history of perfumery and offers a historical and patrimonial showcase to Cosmetic Valley, which is implanted in the Centre-Val de Loire region. More specifically, Chamerolles proposes a visual and olfactory path to discovery, in reconstituted 16th and 17th-century rooms retracing the history of toiletries and perfume.
The Château de Chamerolles is surrounded by a large park and a charming Renaissance garden brought into being by Lancelot II du Lac following a journey in Italy. An idyllic setting for a summertime stroll…
- Average duration of the individual visit : 01h30
- Group educational visits
- Average duration of the group visit : 01h30
- Parlées : French, English, German, Spanish, Dutch
- Specific theme activities
- Junior workshop
- Temporary exhibitions
Full adult price
Annual subscription pass
- Carte bleue
- Motorway at 15 km
- Railway station at 35 km
- Bus station at 35 km
- Road (national / departmental) at 3,5 km
Services and equipments
- Picnic area
- Fully equipped meeting room