The Temple of Venus
Architect Victor Dubois built this madness at the beginning of the nineteenth century, at the heart of the English Garden which he began to landscape in 1817 in a part of Chantilly's Park that had been transformed after the revolutionary sales. Erected on the edge of a romantic water pond occupied by swans, it is inspired by the Greek or Roman temples and houses in its center a copy of a famous ancient statue representing Venus Callipyge, goddess of love and beauty. The Temple of Venus has been totally restored.
The Island of Love
Nestled in the nineteenth century English Garden, the Island of Love borrows its name from a location used by the Princes of Condé for their guests during Summer parties. This strip of lawn lined with fountains and boxwood, arranged for the Duke of Aumale in the nineteenth century, is completed by a trellis gazebo in which stands the statue of Eros, hence its name.
The Great Men's Bridge
This bridge on the Canal Saint-Jean used to be decorated with waterpipes and lit by gas. It is currently under restoration, like the Island of Love.
The Jeu de Paume of the Château of Chantilly
Architect Claude Billard of Bellicard began its construction in 1756 for Prince Louis-Joseph of Bourbon-Condé (1736-1818), an expert amateur of the Palm game (now known as real tennis, the Jeu de Paume is the French precursor of tennis: the game was originally played with hands instead of racquets, though these were eventually introduced). This is one of France’s last Palm buildings, built in cut stone and covered in slate. It features carved ornaments by Henri-Nicolas Cousinet; the elegant wrought-iron balcony is signed Aubry, an iron craftsman. The prince played there for the first time on October 26, 1757.
It has kept its interior volume, comprised of two separate entities, the room of the Jeu de Paume itself, and, in the facade facing the château, the "strip”, aka an area with rooms for players to get dressed or rest. The prince of Conde also liked to have lunch there with his guests after a game.
In the nineteenth century, the Duke of Aumale turned the Jeu de Paume into a Museum space, with large size painting. Some of them remain in their original location: Italian Renaissance paintings such as Gabriel by Annibal Carrache or the Christ farewells to his mother by Baroche, Algerian memories like the taking of the Smalah by Abd el-Kader, by Alfred Decaen based on Horace Vernet, or views of Italy (Rome and Naples) in the nineteenth century (Ponthus-Cinier, Simon-Joseph Denis).
News: From January to September 2012, the Jeu de Paume is under restoration. Don’t miss its October 2012 opening to the public.