Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The Chateau de Chenonceau in France

The owner of an accounting firm in Houston, Texas, Sue Ann Ma also takes time off from work and enjoys traveling. One of the countries that Sue Ann Ma has visited is France. 

A popular tourist destination in France is Chateau de Chenonceau located in the Loire Valley. It is the most visited castle in France, right after the famed Versailles in Paris. The castle sits atop an exquisitely arched bridge spanning the River Cher, and boats can pass through below. 

It is often called “the ladies' chateau” as women were influential in its design and construction. The chateau had a series of owners beginning with the Marques family in the 11th century. Normandy nobleman Thomas Bohier bought the property in 1513, building a new castle whose construction was overseen by his wife, Katherine Briconnet. 

Later King Henri II granted it to his mistress, Diane de Poitiers, whose contribution was constructing the bridge over the Cher river. The death of Henri II saw the Queen, Catherine de Medici, forcibly taking over the chateau from mistress Diane. Queen Catherine then added the grand ballroom and gallery atop the bridge, giving the chateau its now distinctive image.

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