Parc de Richelieu
The cardinal's dream
Around 1630, a magnificent castle was built in Richelieu by Jean-Armand du Plessis (1585-1642) on his birthplace. At that time, he was cardinal and Louis XIII's Prime Minister, and was at the height of his career. The castle was built according to Jacques Lemercier's plans, the King's architect. Imposing symbol of Jean-Armand du Plessis' prestige, it was the largest castle of France that had been erected before Versailles. It introduced the significant cardinal's collection of works of art.
After the Revolution, the castle was pulled down in 1835 apart from the dome, the orangery and the wine warehouse that you will discover while visiting the site. In 1877, an extremely rich banker called Michel Heine bought the site. He carried on the restoration works previously initiated in the middle of the 19th century by planting huge tree alignments along paths, re-irrigating moats and installing an important hydraulic system.
Stroll along outstanding paths of hundred-year-old plane and chestnut trees, cross the canals on charming bridges, make a stop in front of the steles indicating the castle remains, have a view of the very romantic rose garden, pier or locks, but also of the rare trees such as sequoias, common badcypresses or Judea treesâ€¦
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