A deserving castle of name owes have its small or big secrets. Chambord is provided with it:
- Secret or hidden doors, staircases, corridors, ...
- Signature of shall stain to be paid
- More or less secret apartments
Up to you to discover them...
“Chambord is truly royal, royal in its great scale, its grand air, its indifference to common considerations.”
— from “A Little Tour In France” 1884 by Henry James
In the castle and on the grounds signs promote the château and what it has to offer the visitor. Various aspects of the castle are used for illustration purposes on these vinyl banner-styled signs. The double-helix staircase (see photo #1), the salamander (see photo #2) and François’s portrait (see photo #5) get to play a role in the promotions.
François’s greatest legacy is as a builder. Château de Chambord was only one of his many construction projects. He rebuilt le Palais de Louvre in Paris and he remodeled most of the royal chateaux in the Loire Valley. He took Château de Fontainebleau from an insignificant hunting lodge to a grand palace that became the preferred retreat for many of his successors, as well as for the Bonaparte clan.
As a major patron of the arts he assembled one of the great libraries of Europe and made a university education free to all who could benefit from it. Because François had given the Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci a home in Amboise in the artist’s final years, da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” entered the Royal Collection and it now hangs in the Louvre. Benvenuto Cellini also benefited from the king’s patronage. Cellini created his famous gold saltcellar, ironically now in Vienna’s Kunsthistorisches, for the French king. Raphael and Titian were other Italian artists whom François patronized.
Take the time to visit it, we didn't enter as it was a weding taking place at that moment, but is seems really nice. At least from outside.