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Brézé: Two Châteaux in One in the Heart of Anjou

Published on , by Dimitri Joannides

A mysterious network of thousand-year-old troglodyte tunnels lies beneath a Renaissance château in the heart of Anjou.

© Château de Brézé Brézé: Two Châteaux in One in the Heart of Anjou

© Château de Brézé

The Château de Brézé stands on a limestone base in the kind of peaceful, typical Loire Valley vineyard landscape extolled by French Renaissance poet Joachim du Bellay. A listed historic monument since 1983, it belongs to French statesman Jean-Baptiste Colbert’s descendants and has welcomed nearly 100,000 visitors each year for over two decades. The elegant landmark was mentioned as early as the 11 th century and underwent many changes up to the 19 th  century. Today it is one of the most visited sites in the Maine-et-Loire department in the Loire Valley. In the Middle Ages, lords vied with each other in ingenious ways to protect castles and strongholds and make them safe havens during epidemics, invasions and harsh winters. Architects who designed 20 th -century panic rooms to protect celebrities and wealthy owners from unexpected intrusions have nothing on the creativity of their illustrious forerunners at Brézé.…
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