Private Escapes Explored in a Gem of a Castle, Château du Grand Lucé

We are simply enchanted with this book. Globally acclaimed interior designer Timothy Corrigan has restored this grand chateau and created spaces so special, each corner, another inviting private space, elegantly designed, beautifully appointed, and very inviting.

A Look Inside The Château at Private Spaces in which to Escape

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Imagine blissfully whiling away the day, indulging in the art of doing nothing sinking into soft chairs, kissed by gentle lighting, ambiance richly warm, the gently colored walls playing with the light dancing off the furniture, lulling you into a deeply relaxed state.

 An Invitation to Château du Grand-Lucé is the story of a passionate love affair between a man—award-winning interior designer Timothy Corrigan—and a gorgeous wreck of a house, set in the magnificent French countryside. Though the house was an empty, gently crumbling shell of its former 18th century self, Corrigan immediately appreciated its excellent bones on his first visit in 2002. What followed is a true odyssey, starting with a year and a half during which Corrigan vigorously campaigned the French government for the right to buy the house and return it to its original use as a private residence. Though he was in competition with people—Frenchmen, all—who wanted to turn it into a hotel, a spa, or a restaurant, all of which would have financially benefited the tiny Loire valley town in which the chateau stood, Les Architectes des Bâtiments de France—the equivalent of the Landmarks Commission—appreciated Corrigan’s vision and determination to restore this architecturally significant structure to its former glory. Against all odds, the Commission decided in favor of the plan which would keep the château intact, and, in 2004, Timothy Corrigan was the new owner of Château du Grand-Lucé.

Timothy corrigan chateau window seat

Love this window seat, it just begs for you to curl up in it, hot tea in hand, gazing out the window at the gardens, perhaps drifting off for a little nap. Through its stories and the beautiful photography, we found much inspiration to spruce up our private spaces and serves as a gentle reminder of the value in slowing down.

The initial major restoration took approximately five years, but the meticulous and ambitious process—and, for Corrigan, the joy—goes on to this day as the house evolves with his signature mix of continental elegance and California comfort. Corrigan is an avid student of French architecture and design history, but also a passionate believer in creating a home that truly reflects the way its occupants live. The château is both authentic in Gallic flavor, yet impeccably suited to the relaxed country living Corrigan himself treasures, and which he loves to share with visiting friends.

Timothy corrigan chateau library

Surrounded by beautiful volumes, losing yourself in hours of reading, taking time to touch the page and allow the words to stir the imagination. One can easily imagine while in this space, the scents, the embrace and warmth of this very special grand home, graced with such attention to detail. We can imagine it would be hard to leave such an amazing space one that could easily connect deeply with a visitor and leave an indelible mark on their heart.

[pullquote]This book is so hard to put down. You’ll keep coming back to it again and again to pour over the enchanting images, draw from the stories and insight into better living not just by being surrounded by beauty, but for making your private spaces even more inviting and meaningful. [/pullquote] The reader will come away with an appreciation for every aspect of the restoration that he recounts, but the real heart of the book is the sense the reader will have of visiting the château as Timothy Corrigan’s lucky guests do. Divided into the three-day sections of an ideal weekend, the book opens with “First Impressions” as we pass through the château’s imposing gates, into the striking entry hall, through the public rooms, up the grand staircase to settle into one of the fourteen well-appointed guest rooms, and dreamy bathrooms, with majestic views. In subsequent sections like “Evening in the Gardens” and “Morning in the Country” the consummate host escorts us through the château’s lushly maintained landscape and private woods, as well as the charming village, and nearby woods, and shares with us festive dinners in the château’s rustic Orangery and the formal dining room, champagne in the “green room” of the garden at dusk, and an informal breakfast in the house’s sunny kitchen. Throughout, Corrigan’s sensitive attention to every cosseting detail as a host leaps off the page to embrace the reader as it does his guests.

Visit the book website

Published by Rizzoli New York, 2013

Timothy corrigan chateau living area