About the Author

author photo

The French Cycling Bicycle Gourmet - French Country Travel Life Film Maker and Author. Your non-snobby Gourmet Guide to food, wine travel and Lifestyle Adventure!

See All Posts by This Author

French Country Travel Life Abandoned Palace



French Country Travel Life Abandoned Palace. Yes, there is such an animal. It is located in the capital of this fair land. And it has been abandoned, not only by it’s present occupant, but by many of the former as well. However, would never be abandoned by DA BG.( Should I be called upon.)

Traditionally, the Elyseé Palace is the “Home” of the French President. The “White House” of froggie land.

But just as traditionally, a majority of French Prezzies, both present and past, have chosen to hang their hats elsewhere. For a variety of reasons.

My fellow scribbler “Shartka” leads us further down the road of  Presidental Palace Abandonment:

“The choice of François Hollande to stay in his modest 50m2 apartment in the 15th rather than enjoy the sumptuous luxury of the presidential Elysée Palace may seem like the maladroit political symbolism of a freshly elected greenhorn, but few presidents have actually lived in the palace.

Georges Pompidou rarely slept in the second-floor private apartments of the palace, as was the case for subsequent presidents Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, François Mitterrand and Nicolas Sarkozy. In addition, going back to De Gaulle, the idea of moving the presidential offices has continually resurfaced, most recently in 2008.

The powerful presidency put in place by the 1958 Constitution necessitated a considerable increase in presidential staffers. De Gaulle, at any given time had around 40 compared with René Coty’s dozen or so. Finding it too small and outdated, De Gaulle did not like the Elysée Palace. He also reportedly did not appreciate the fact that you could not land a helicopter on the premises.

Invalides and the Chateau de Vincennes were both researched as possible future presidential digs, although he finally dropped the idea, faced with serious reluctance from close advisors.

In order to free up space in the palace, he kicked out a number of people living their, turned the Royal suite that welcomed foreign Heads of State into offices and acquired a couple neighboring buildings. For De Gaulle, it was only reluctantly that he lived in the palace, escaping for a weekend in Colombey-les-Deux-Eglises as often as possible.

Thus, the Elysée palace has more often than not served as an office rather than a home for France’s presidents.  However, there were exception. Jacques Chirac made a political statement of living in the Elysée saying that when you’re at the helm of the State, you must be there day and night, although Chirac is also known for having made a career out of palatial state-financed housing.”

Read more HERE


What are ya thinkin’?


If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!

19 Responses to “French Country Travel Life Abandoned Palace”

  1. martin bromish says:

    i guess luxury isn’t for everyone!

  2. carla thomas says:

    martin….maybe it’s more like everyone has their own definition of luxury?

  3. larry bostovich says:

    i’m thinkin’ it’s weird!

  4. thelma quentin says:

    i guess i’d have to check the place out for a while before deciding if it was for me or not. and you?

  5. carin sallers says:

    so thelma…..how long do you think you’d need to make your decision?

  6. thelma quentin says:

    carin….probably about 2 years; after all..it IS a big place!

  7. andrew carmichael-jones says:

    i know it may sound strange..but i can appreciate how those presidents would want a place of their own…..a little thing called “privacy!”

  8. bob malcolm says:

    gotcha andrew….but with all those rooms…….how hard could it be to find some?

  9. teresa breddlove says:

    i think this post underscores that old maxim: “be careful what you wish for.”

  10. randy minster says:

    i’d be willing to give it try!

  11. enice protmento says:

    hey randy…..let me know if you need a gardener!

  12. bonita sanchez says:

    randy…..if you need cleaning lady…..it’s not me….but i might be persuaded to be hostess for important events!

  13. ron worthington says:

    i sympathize with degaulle. I mean – what good is a palace with no helipad?

  14. jon carlson says:

    ron…..assuming your present “palace” has a helipad…yeah?

  15. mandy roberts says:

    from what i’ve read about mr chirac, it seems that he spend very little time at the palace at night….

  16. clarice evenston says:

    you’re on the money there mandy……i think i read somewhere that the night lday diana died, mrs chirac did’nt know where he was!

  17. jed lampet says:

    i guess it just goes to prove “it takes all kinds to make a world!”

  18. elmer anderson says:

    you got that right jed!

  19. marts larrson says:

    i can understand why these predients would not want to live in the palace. think about all the pressures they have to deal wtih. and all the formality..the receptions, visiting head of state…..all at the palace. WOULD YOU REALLY WANT TO LIVE THERE WITH ALL THIS GOING ON,

Leave a Reply

Loading Facebook Comments ...