it’s good to be the king

Who says you can’t live like a king, even in difficult economic times? The 17th-century Hôtel du Grand Contrôle, one of the Palace of Versailles’ official mansions, should halt all the naysayers when it’s reborn at the end of 2011 as the boutique Hotel de l’Orangerie.

Built in the 1680’s as the office and home of the King’s official treasurers, the mansion was evacuated along with the rest of the Court of Versailles during the French Revolution and since then it’s suffered some serious wear and tear.

A yearlong renovation, estimated to cost $7 million, comes courtesy of Ivy International, the Belgian hotel company that hatched the unique plan to take the dormant monument off the hands of a cash-starved French government and turn a profit – a percentage of which will channel back into the Versailles treasury.

The luxurious new digs will offer 23 rooms and suites with views of the Royal Suisses lake and the Orangerie, where Louis XIV housed his collection of orange and palm trees.  Hotel guests will also get private access to the Chateau itself.  Details remain sketchy, however, about any cake.

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