Château de Serrant: A Fairy Tale Meets Reality in the Loire Valley

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The idea of owning and living in a castle sounds like a fairy tale. Yet, the practicality of heating, dusting and maintaining a manor the size of several city blocks is daunting, if not overwhelming. And that doesn’t even count doing any yardwork.

For this very reason, it’s rare that any of these châteaux in the Loire Valley are privately owned. Rarer still is it that someone calls a place like this “home.” Nonetheless, since the mid-1700s descendants of the Antoine Walsh and the Duc de la Trémoïlle families have lived in Château de Serrant.

To help offset the astronomical upkeep, the current owners, the Prince and Princess de Merode, charge the public admission to view portions of the estate. This includes the chance to walk through many of the museum-like living areas and sumptuous wood paneled library with its 12,000 books. Furthermore, they rent the orangery and grounds for weddings. How delightful we can share in the fairy tale, without having to wash any of the hundreds of windows.

If you enjoyed this story in our series, we invite you to check out our travel books that use our theme, A Picture Is Worth 1,000 characters. Each impression features an original photo and a story that’s exactly 1,000 characters long.