We arrived at Versailles a half hour before opening. Look at that sky! The gamble of switching the days and going to The Louvre yesterday clearly paid off. See the gold? This is real. It was brilliant against the sunlight and the blue of the sky. One can only imagine the impact it would’ve had on people back in the day. The wealth that it implies is staggering.
From this view you can see the scale of the buildings. Pretty darned big.
This is the King who made the whole thing come about. Until he came along, the French kings pretty much based themselves in the Louvre, in the centre of Paris. Versailles was a hunting lodge, but Louis XIV decided to make it so much more.
(He was the third last Louis.)
Scott and I wanted to get to the Hall of Mirrors as quickly as possible, so we didn’t waste too much time dawdling in the rooms before this. However, it’s impossible not to see these rooms and appreciate what’s in them.
I should really get my hallway ceiling looking like this.
We were among the front runners. Only this toddler stood between us and glory.
Here’s some bits and bobs before the hall of mirrors.
Look up. OMG. Gold, anyone?
Sumptuous. But the crowds were starting to catch up. Bold moves were needed.
This is the shot Scott took, while I was distracted with gold and windows. Seriously, can you believe our luck? Who gets to see the Hall of Mirrors like this? It was worth getting up early and queuing for half an hour.
Everything I’ve ever heard about the Hall of Mirrors is that it’s utterly packed and people shuffle through, barely able to see one side of the room from the other.
I turned around and shot this. The quiet time in the Hall of Mirrors was over…. the tourists were coming!!!!!
Look at this. It’s not hard to imagine this room taking the world by storm, when you consider how dark most of the rooms were at this time in history. The light from the huge windows, themselves a huge expense, let alone the massive mirrors… an incredible extravagance… was a major political and artistic statement by the French Crown.
And we got to see it properly!!!!
A close-up of the gold along the sides.
The windows overlooking the gardens.
More on Versailles later. This was the first half hour… but I’ve just come back from our farewell dinner to Paris, (I’m a few days behind in the blog) and I’ve had a cocktail and lots of wine. *yawn*
More to come, including the golf buggy. *OMGsomuchfun*