Pavillon Dufour

Château de Versailles - France

The Château of Versailles is composed of a series of historic buildings. The last buildings to be built were the Gabriel and Dufour pavilions, completed in 1814. They were part of the large masterplan of Gabriel, which included a complete modification of the access to the château so that visitors could enter and leave through the two pavilions.

But this large project remained unfinished and the rear of the Dufour Pavilion was never realized. A narrow body of historic stables escaped demolition and today connects the pavilion to the château. The narrowness is a major obstacle in welcoming and channeling the many visitors into the château.

Our project rids the body of this building from all the reception services in order to devote it completely to the flux of visitors.

A stone monolith is built leaning against the stables. The solid stone is hollowed out, discretely hiding the security exits, elevators, toilets, lifts, and technical facilities necessary for the reception.

The mass keeps a discrete distance with the old buildings. At the edge of the façade a vertical slot reveals the depth of the foundation.

An auditorium is created and its fragmented walls evoke a cave with draping facets that echo the motif of an Aubusson tapestry from the collections of the château.

The project attempts to intervene minimally on the existing building fabric. However, the immense circulation flow of Versailles required some modifications of the existing building as well as the demolishment of certain items and the expansion of circulation routess. The traces of the past are accentuated in a contemporary and radical intervention.

PROGRAM Public access pavillon for

the Château de Versailles


CLIENT OPPIC Versailles TEAM Maison Edouard François, COMMINS (ACOUSTICIAN), Scenearchie (SCENOGRAPHY), CTH (MECHANICAL ENGINEERING), Verdier (structure)


AREA 2 000 M² Net Floor Area BUDGET 

9 M € SCHEDULE Competition 2011





Dufour Pavillon

Château de Versailles

78000 Versailles