The largest, most spectacular, historic and magnificent building par excellence, the biggest property that any human can possess on earth… We do not lack the words to identify this type of house: a French castle or chateau. Not that common in other countries, chateaux are relatively easy to find in France. If you have a good sized budget and some sort of project in mind, a castle could be just the sort of property for you.
The grounds of a chateau often boast interesting features- chapels, gate houses, gites, stables and sometimes even lakes for a superb view over your own territory. French chateaux offer the rare ability to look out from your window and survey no land but your own. But despite all its advantages, buying a chateau must be a well thought out decision which has been given serious thought.. Remember to keep in mind that council and housing taxes remain very high for this type of French property.
-> Buy a French chateau… for yourself
It is ideal for a large family wanting to spend their French holidays together with their extended family and friends. Summer can involve diving in the lakes, exploring forests and meadows, throwing a garden party… the possibilities are endless!, Grounds usually vary in size, but most come with a minimum of 1 hectare of land (2.50 acres or so) , a real paradise for children!
A chateau is also ideal when you want to organise a special event such as a a wedding, a birthday, or even a bar mitzvah or Communion. You can enjoy the large dining areas for the meal, take advantage of the ample courtyard and grounds for parking, or even host the party under a marquee in the event of rainy weather…
Obviously, French chateaux don’t come cheap. You can hardly ever find a chateau under €300,000. The most imposing and beautiful ones could reach between €15,000,000 and €20,000,000 (and sometimes even more). More expensive chateaux are not generally for sale but owned by families who inherit, otherwise they belong to the local county.
-> Buy a French chateau… to run a business
A French chateau is also perfect for running a business. Making your castle a high end hotel,chambres d’hotes or wedding venue are some of the most popular options as everything you need is available: a large number of bedrooms and reception rooms, an imposing entrance area, gardens and often a pool… If you have a well stocked lake or river, fishing activity could be envisaged. As you’ll probably have a number of outbuildings and plenty of land, an equestrian school could also be perfect.
Then, if your chateau boasts interesting architecture or unusual features such as a maze, giant trees and acres of lawn, lakes, fountains, traditional paintings in your living room, giant bay windows, superb marble stairs and so on, why not organise visits? In France, you will find many chateaux are open for visits around the country. Why not do the same? It is another way to earn money and to show foreigners and tourists interesting aspects of French culture, history and heritage.
In Ile-de-France, Pays-de-La-Loire and Normandy, you’ll find some of the most beautiful French chateaux. The most famous are in Versailles, Fontainebleau, Chenonceau, Cheverny, Chambord and the medieval city of Carcassonne in the south of France.