My Travel Blog

Chateau Saint-Fargeau: A 30-Year Restoration Project

After Guedelon we had to visit Mr. Guyot’s other castle, Saint-Fargeau.  Saint-Fargeau has a long and storied history starting around the year 980 when Heribert, Bishop of Auxerre built a fortified hunting lodge.  Over the next ten centuries the hunting lodge was turned into a castle and probably changed hands a dozen times along with suffering sever damage by two fires.  In 1979 Michel Guyot purchased Saint-Fargeau, and has spent the last 30 years refurbishing it.

“The entrance to Saint-Fargeau Castle.”

Unfortunately we didn’t take the tour as it was only in French, so we missed out on the furnished apartment.  When we return we’ll have to visit the apartment, as it looks beautiful from the pictures in the brochure.  There were still a number of furnished rooms though I had the feeling they were not nearly as nice as the rooms on the tour.

“The main meeting hall.”

“This stairway didn’t exist when the castle was purchased.”

“The laundry and sewing room.”

I have to hand it to Mr. Guyot. He doesn’t do anything halfway.  Chateau Saint-Fargeau is the largest privately owned chateau we have visited.  I can only assume that the grounds that make up the surrounding private property are equally large.  In many of the rooms were pictures of the chateau from the time when Mr. Guyot purchased it.  The place was a dump.  It was so bad I’m not sure where you would even begin to fix it up.  You can tell that they have replaced about half of the glass in the windows.  The old glass is rippled and distorted where as the new glass is perfectly smooth.

“Part of the enclosed courtyard with plenty of windows.”

“Sara standing in an impressive hallway.”

“Mr. Guyot’s backyard.”

Besides having a lake Mr. Guyotalso has his own train collection, and a large stable with a number of horses.  It looked like someone was competing, as there was a room full of ribbons and trophies.  Around one of the corrals was an electrified fence to keep the horses in.  Our friend Marty is not the brightest light on the porch.  Unfortunately, he decided to find out if the fence really worked.  It did!

“Saint-Fargeau Castle.”

“A mini locomotive.”

“This was the largest locomotive I have ever seen. It weighed over 1,000 tons.”

-Tom Miller
Author of “The Wave” – 
a Chuck Palmer Adventure novel

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About the Author:

Tom Miller graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor of Science in Geology. He is a consummate adventurer with over 1,000 dives as a recreational scuba diver, and an avid sailor who has traveled 65,000 miles throughout the Pacific including the Hawaiian Islands. Miller has also cruised the canals of Europe on his canal barge and given numerous lectures on cruising the canals of Europe, as well as sailing in the South Pacific. Piloting is also an interest of Miller's, and He has completed over 1,000 hours flying everything from small Cessnas to Lear jets.