Classic Manor-Palace of Vaux-Le-Vicomte in the Hands of Three Brothers

What is the history of the “historical monument”? Is it hard to manage the estate? What are the expenses and income for its maintenance? What about the future?

All these questions were answered by Alexander de Vogue, the owner of the French classical estate - the Palace of Vaux-Le-Vicomte on December 4 in the campus building at on Naberezhnaya Kanala Griboyedova.

The guest began his lecture with the words "I'm Sorry that I don't speak your beautiful language. It is one of the most difficult languages” and then showed a short three-minute video, which briefly presented information on past of the Palace, its creator and today's restoration work under the leadership of Alexander de Vogue.

After a small, but interesting video, the speaker spoke in detail about the creator of the Palace - Nicolas Fouquet, showing architect's project of the building and explained that Nicolas Fouquet dreamed “to have the most beautiful house, innovative new place, which everyone will admire”. This palace has been admired to the present day. How? Through "bad copies" - houses, similar in architecture and structure, which are created in many countries all over the world.

The garden of the Palace of Vaux-Le-Vicomte is the place where every visitor should walk and feel all the "magic" of this place.

In addition to the historical and architectural aspects of the creation and implementation of the Palace, Alexander de Vogue shared with the audience the information about income and expenses for maintenance of the palace on simple and clear diagrams.

The cost of the tickets to the estate, gift shops and restaurants (created by his mother) occupy the first place in the list of income, and the most recent lines are given to sponsorship and public subsidies. He also added that there is very little help from the state.

If you want to have money (in France), you have to be nice, but my father wasn't nice.

Unexpected figures of 41% took the first place in the chart and they show "personnel expenses" – this is how expensive it is to hire workers in France. The second place is almost two times less in terms of volume are given to operational work, which many expected to see in the first place. Other expenses include fundraising activities, communications and various taxes.

Mr. de Vogue has highlighted three missions in response to a question about the future of the Palace of Vaux-Le-Vicomte:

  1. Maintain, restore, and protect the estate.

    It is important to mention that the names of people who donate their own money for the restoration of statues in the garden (already 62) are marked on the pedestals of these works of art.

  2. To offer fun, immersive and innovative.

    The chart also include information on how much money is spent on renting dresses from the XVII-XVIII centuries, hiring people in costumes, Christmas decorations, various exhibitions with art universities, weddings for rich people.

  3. Establishing contacts with universities and scientists

    Already now events are held when students of architectural universities create projects for the restoration of the estate. It is planned to conduct research of the huge library, which is located inside the Palace.

After a long and exciting lecture, the audience was given the opportunity to ask questions.

Some wanted to know who visit the Palace. It turned out that 75% of the visitors are French; 50% of visitors are those who are interested in culture, art and know a lot about the place they came to, while the other 50% of visitors wish to get esthetic pleasure from walking in the Palace.

The complexity of the maintenance process was one of the most interesting questions for the audience. Alexander de Vogue admitted that it was very difficult to work with his brothers as a team. After all, personal life and business life are different things.

At the end of the meeting, Alexander de Vogue gladly distributed brochures with information about the Palace.

Text by
Viktoria Grebennik