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Culture

French chateau gets much needed love in historic, “real-time” restoration project

April 30, 2015

Built on a former fortress site dating back to the 13th century, Château de Gudanes has been abandoned for hundreds of years. The history surrounding this beautiful castle is as rich as what and whom resided inside during the1700’s when it was the home of the influential, wealthy and ancient de Sales family. When the French Revolution erupted and the aristocratic class was forced to flee or face prosecution, this recently (50 years) rebuilt chateau was overtaken by the Astrie family (of the rising bourgeoisie class). Years later, after many changes throughout French society, the château was declared a historic monument, thus making it nearly impossible to perform the much needed repairs due to the vast amount of restrictions.

Recently,Château de Gudanes was put on the market, and after 4 years for sale and a lengthy 2 years of negotiations, it was purchased by an Australian family with hopes of returning it to its former glory for all to see. Follow along as the new owners peel back the layers to chronicle the restoration of this special property, unearthing treasures along the way. 

The entrance to the enchanted Château de Gudanes in the French Pyrenees. This 50-room castle will have some areas for public use.

Image courtesy of: Perth Now, photographer is: Carla Coulson

This amazing ceiling rose remainded intact beautifully. In addition, the 18th century chandelier hook.

Image courtesy of: Château de Gudanes

In the “Salon de Rose”, named because of the original pink tinted wall color, the owners along with French art restorer, Frantz, peel back the rotten timber to unveil a beautiful grey and blue with white brushstrokes fresco. The filigree shapes, graceful and florid, attest to the stature of the family.

Image courtesy of: Château de Gudanes

Australian owner Katrina Waters, a former tax accountant, enjoys a moment of serenity in her work-in-progress chateau.

Image courtesy of: Woman

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