Restoring a Ruined 18th-Century Chateau in France

Knowing what it’s like to take on gutting a house for a top to bottom renovation, this colossal chateau restoration is an undertaking that I can only imagine is beyond challenging at times.

If there was a daily blog about it, I would undoubtedly be glued to it.

Doesn’t Chateau Gudanes look mysterious and intriguing?

Can’t you just envision a horse and carriage in another century clopping through the snow toward the regal gates?

As you can only imagine, it’s a very long story as to how the 94-room chateau fell into complete disrepair.

Over the last couple of decades, ceilings, walls and floors collapsed resulting in a pile of rubble throughout the 18th-century chateau.

Of course there was extensive water damage and mold throughout the five levels. With the exception of three rooms, the grand and majestic chateau was inaccessible.

Chateau Gudanes was built around 1745 which dates from the reign of King Louis XV. Located in Verdun, in the south of France, the chateau was built on the site of a 13th-century fortress.

In 2013, an Australian couple from Perth, Karen and Craig Waters, purchased the ruined chateau after visiting it only once. Initially, they were on a quest to find a French farmhouse, until their teenage son found the chateau online.

The owners admit that the chateau’s restoration is a ‘lifelong commitment.’ However, they plan to open the gates to guests later in the summer. For two months (July & August), the chateau will become a hotel.

To watch a video showing the interior in 2013, click here.

To watch a video with owner, Karen Waters ,discussing the chateau in March 2017, click here.

Interested in a 3, 5 or 7-day French escape?  Stay at the chateau!  Click here (scroll down for video).


*The Battle of Verdun was the largest and longest battle on the Western Front between the French and German armies during WWI.*


5 thoughts on “Restoring a Ruined 18th-Century Chateau in France

  1. Back in the 60’s I knew someone who bought a ruined castle in France. They said that people took the roofs off old buildings so they could be declared a “ruin” and therefore have tax advantages. A misguided rule! But few people were buying until recently.

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