Wednesday, August 24, 2011
You may not be able to buy anything from Chateau de Groussay but you will be able to buy some similar treasures from Palais Abbatial de Royaumont soon. The Italianate House near Chantilly, France is featured in World of Interiors and its contents will be up for auction at Christie's in Paris 19-21 September. The public viewing is 17-18 September from 12:00-7:00pm.
The home was built in 1792 by Louis Le Masson but wasn't lived in long by the owner abbot Monsieur de Ballivieres because of the revolution. It was restored in 1832 by Marquis de Bellissen and sold in 1899 to a railway magnate and later to Baron Eugene Fould in 1932. He was married to Marie-Cecile (Mitzi) von Springer and they completely restored the facade and interiors. The couple became Baron and Baroness Fould-Springer and hosted guests that included Elsie de Wolfe, Coco Chanel's friend Misia Sert, and the Greek royal family. The house was spared during the war because their daughter Helene's husband was a Spanish diplomat and they were able to fly the Spanish flag over it. Liliane, one of their other daughters, married Elie de Rothschild in 1942 and it continued to host fabulous people and parties. The saddest part of the story is that the house will be turned into a conference center after the auction. Only Mitzi's room will remain intact in honor of her. But the house's loss can be our gain. I'm off to check the reserves now. I saw some chairs that are calling my name.