Salle du Jeu de Paume
One of Versailles’ prettiest, the neo-classical Cathédrale St-Louis is a harmonious if austere work built between 1743 and 1754, which...
Potager du Roi
The Potager du Roi was laid out on nine hectares of land in the late 17th century to meet the enormous catering requirements of the...
Le Phare St-Louis
This cosy Breton place heaves. Pick from 15 savoury galettes (buckwheat pancakes; €3.60 to €9) and 40-odd sweet crêpes (€3.60 to...
Lonely Planet review
Built in 1686, the Salle du Jeu de Paume played a pivotal role in the Revolution a century later. It was in Versailles that Louis XVI convened the États-Généraux made up of more than 1000 deputies representing the nobility, clergy and the so-called Third Estate (ie the middle classes) in May 1789 in a bid to deal with national debt and to moderate dissent by reforming the tax system. But when the Third Estate’s reps were denied entry, they met separately on the tennis court, formed a National Assembly and took the famous Serment du Jeu de Paume (Tennis Court Oath), swearing not to dissolve it until Louis XVI had accepted a new constitution. This act of defiance sparked demonstrations of support and, less than a month later, a mob in Paris stormed the prison at Bastille. It's visitable by guided tour in French only.