25 Things: Ever After’s Château de Hautefort

25thyearThis week I crossed off a very big thing that has been on my current bucket list, 25 Things for My 25th Year: visit the main filming location for one of my favorite films, Ever After: A Cinderella Story. But first, some background info about my experience with this film’s shooting locations.

I visited this region of France, the Périgord, once 4 years ago, but it wasn’t until I was in the city of Sarlat that I realized where I was. Sarlat is a gorgeous city, by the way, and it’s where they filmed the “town” scenes of Ever After. During that same trip I also toured the ruins of Château de Commarque, which, I found out the other night, was also a filming location for this movie! (Click here for the picture proof) So, technically I have now visited 3 of the filming locations for one of my all-time favorite films :) On to Château de Hautefort!

hautefort

Château de Hautefort, the perfect setting for fairy tales!

In the Cinderella film Ever After, Château de Hautefort serves as the home of the King and Queen of France and their rebelliously romantic son, Prince Henry. In real life, Château de Hautefort is considered the jewel of the Périgord, a region in the southwest of France.

When we visited the castle it was undergoing renovations on one of its towers. It’s rare to visit a castle when it’s not being renovated, but nevertheless it was still a very beautiful castle to see in real life! The park itself is exquisite. I felt like I was in my own fairytale as I walked around the gardens and the courtyards that I easily recognized from one of my most-watched movies. My husband can attest–I was fangirling!

And now for the pictures! (There are tons!)

The Courtyards

Château de Hautefort Courtyard

This exterior courtyard is where I fangirled the most. It’s where Danielle and Henry have their first banter, where the Prince becomes enraptured by her. Even though there was the restoration of one of the towers going on while we were there, it was still a beautiful visit.

Ever After

This interior courtyard is breathtaking. I would love to eat my lunch out here, overlooking the quaint city of Hautefort. Or spend an afternoon out here lounging with a book. It. Is. Beautiful.

Hautefort Courtyard

This is also the scene where they shot the masked ball, although I didn’t recognize that at first. In the movie there are hundreds of props and people and it looked completely different, but just as lovely in its own way.

Ever AfterGrand Staircase

Château de Hautefort Staircase

This is the staircase the Grimm brothers are seen going up in the beginning of Ever After. It’s a simple yet elegant staircase that invited guests would have used when visiting the castle.

Ever After

Fireplace Room

Château de Hautefort Fireplace Room

This room, I discovered after rewatching the movie last night, was used in several scenes:
♥ The Grimm brothers meeting with the Grande Dame takes place here (you can recognize the marble bust by the window).
Ever After♥ This room is also used as the throne room, both for when Henry and his parents have the disagreement about the arranged marriage and for Rodmilla and Marguerite’s “trial” at the end of the movie. The room looks very different due to all the added wall coverings, but the flooring is the same.

Ever After

Some historical facts:
♥ The Fireplace Room was formally a great hall which was formally a medieval dungeon!
♥ The fireplaces themselves are not original as they were destroyed in a devastating fire in 1968 (which happened to be the second of two great fires in the castle’s history)

Lady’s Apartment

Château de Hautefort Lady's Bedroom

The curtains! The sofa! THE DESK!

My favorite room of the castle (at least of the ones that are open to public viewing) was the Lady’s Bedroom. If this were my bedroom, I would never leave it except to walk in the gardens or to take a bath in my beautiful conjoined bathroom:

Château de Hautefort Bath Château de Hautefort Vanity

Dining Room

Château de Hautefort Dining Room

I enjoyed touring the dining room especially because it was not ruined in the 1968 fire. The artwork on the walls is from the 17th century.

Château de Hautefort Dining Room Painting

Guest Room

Château de Hautefort Guest Bedroom

Another enchanting room, this is the bedroom my husband would love to call his own. I love the canopy bed and the bookshelves and the desk, and pretty much everything about this room. There was also a lovely fireplace I was unable to photograph.

Guest BedroomUnderground Passages

Ever After

 

I recognized this passageway as soon as I entered it. There wasn’t much to see down there except for the old kitchen that you could only get a glimpse of from the doorway.

The Park

Château de Hautefort

Directly in front of the entrance to the castle lies an extensive park. Dogs are allowed in the park and gardens, which was fortunate for us since we visited the castle on our trip home from vacation and Solo was with us. Matt and I took turns visiting the castle’s interior and then we were able to stroll through the castle grounds together.

The Gardens

Château de Hautefort Gardens

The gardens are arguably the most beautiful part about Château de Hautefort. My pictures do not do them justice, but you can see for yourself how intricate everything is. 

Château de Hautefort GardensChâteau de Hautefort Flowers Château de Hautefort Gardens

Several scenes from Ever After were shot in these gardens, including:
♥ The conversation in the early evening between the King, Queen, and Prince Henry when they come to a compromise on the marriage was shot beneath this covered walkway. While I was there I even quoted the Queen’s line: “Choose wisely, Henry. Divorce is only something they do in England;” ;)

Château de Hautefort Gardens♥ Rodmilla and Marguerite have tea with the Queen in the back gardens, which would be the absolute best place to have tea. It smelled like roses everywhere.

Château de Hautefort Gardens♥ Prince Henry finds out about Danielle’s “engagement” in these side gardens:

Château de Hautefort Gardens

Ok, so that was A LOT of pictures to post, but who doesn’t like looking at pictures of pretty castles? ;) Hope you enjoyed this post, whether you’re an Ever After fan or not!

Advertisements

30 thoughts on “25 Things: Ever After’s Château de Hautefort

  1. I adore Ever After! I haven’t watched it in a while, so I need to re-watch it a.s.a.p. I am so jealous because WOW it’s all so beautiful! It’s seriously just like a fairy tale. I was drooling as I scrolled down the page. When I got to the lady’s room I thought the exact same things! I would never leave that room either. Thank you for sharing. I’m going to hide in your suitcase next time you go somewhere awesome. lol ;)

  2. How awesome! I love visiting filming locations — I got to see where lots of the Mel Gibson/Heath Ledger movie The Patriot was filmed, and it was such fun. But not nearly as splendid as this! Wow. Thanks for sharing all those pics!

  3. Pingback: End of the Year Survey! | macarons & paperbacks

  4. Merci Maggie! I am an australian travelling around france in a few weeks. I also watched Ever After far too many times as a young girl, and was trying to decide if visiting the Chateau was worthwhile… you have convinced me! Now to practice my Danielle de Barbarac impressions.

  5. Pingback: May & June Highlights | macarons & paperbacks

  6. I adore this film. Love your post. I visited the Dordogne (Sarlat, Hautefort, Beyac) in 2007 for a day in Sarlat. Rented a car to go to Hautefort and stumbled across Beynac… I have a trip planned for April 2016 for a week and will visit all the sites again with more time while dragging a friend along. She’s never seen the movie but I will make her watch it on the way there :-)

  7. Pingback: October Highlights! | macarons & paperbacks

  8. Pingback: November Highlights! | macarons & paperbacks

  9. Love this movie (just finished watching it for the millionth time) and your photos of this extraordinary castle are so lovely! Thank you for sharing your adventure with us!!

  10. Maggie, I stumbled on your site by accident after watching Ever After today. I love this version of Cinderella – so believable! I was curious about the castle and various locations in the movie; were they real or just a set. You answered every question I had and the pictures are just breathtaking! Thank you so much!

  11. Maggie, I have long been an obsessed fan of Ever After (even though I was two years old when it came out). I am currently studying abroad in France, and I am planning to visit this very castle for the very same reason. I would love some tips on transportation if you have any to offer! As a car-less college student who is relying on buses and Air bnb’s, anything would help! It was amazing to stumble upon your blog. You’re living my dream :)

    • Hi Danielle! Sorry I didn’t see this comment sooner (I’ve been a little bit MIA on my blog lately). Did you visit the castle yet? I’m sure there are trains that can take you to the area, but I’m not sure how direct the routes are from where you’re living. If you’re under 25, train tickets are discounted so take advantage if you can! How are you enjoying France?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s