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Château de Boursault

In 1843, Madame Clicquot commissioned the architect Jean-Jacques Arveuf-Fransquin to build her a chateau on the left bank of the Marne River, downstream from Epernay. The result was the Château de Boursault.

It was here that the Widow Clicquot held lavish receptions for her Grand Marque clientele — earning herself the sobriquet "Queen of Reims" from 19th Century French dramatist Prosper Mérimée. Hence, perhaps, the inscription she commissioned before her death at the age of 89, having spent her last 25 years in retirement at the Chateau. Displayed on the pediment of the chateau, the inscription reads: "Natis Mater, à ses enfants, leur (Reine)-Mère" (Natis Mater, to her children, from their [queen]-mother.

The inscription « Natis Mater » is a reference to the Widow’s generous gifting of the Chateau to her daughter, wife of Louis de Chevigné, and her grand-daughter, Marie-Clémentine, who received it as part of her dowry on her marriage to Louis de Rochechouart-Mortemart. The couple had a daughter, Anne de Rochechouart-Mortemart, who in 1867 became the Duchess of Uzès by marriage to the 12th Duke of Uzès.
The property passed out of family hands in 1913 and was converted into a military hospital, a role it fulfilled in both World Wars. The Chateau in all its glory together with some 11 hectares of private parklands is now the sole property of a local Champagne producer.

There is however an exact replica of the Chateau de Boursault: the Casino of Arcachon in south-west France. It was originally built in 1870 as a private residence for Adalbert Deganne, the mayor and founder of the town. The lovelorn Deganne was so smitten with Marie Clémentine Clicquot when he met her in 1839 that he bought the plans of the Chateau from Arveuf-Fransquin and had himself built an identical copy.


  • Casino d'Arcachon