A historical mansion
A bit of history...
An «hôtel particulier» of the 18th century in Ardeche
The mansion was built on the foundations of old parts of the city wall of Joyeuse. As the main city of the duchy of Joyeuse, Joyeuse city had the privilege of having two city walls (see for instance the famous city of Carcassonne in South Western France). The second wall stopped exactly where the mansion will be built, and in particular, there was very likely a house guard there, as can be proven by the evidence of a very old arcade on the right edge of the façade belonging to the second city wall and two arrow slits. In the XVIth century, the Allamel family, famous notaries of Joyeuse, who owned the former house there, united with the Bournet, an old aristocratic family, wich became the Allamel de Bournet. They decided in early 18th century to rebuild and embellish the house in a more recent and fashioned architecture way.
The «hôtel particulier» as we see it today hasn’t changed much since the early years of 18th century, as we can see it in the gorgeous staircase, the style of the wooden doors, the great windows. Part of its original decoration was lost or moved to other properties of the Allamel de Bournet family. Though, for our greatest pleasure, the 18th century French typical plan is unchanged, the doors and the staircase are intact. In particular, the main façade is rare and wonderful, with not less than 7 great windows on the whole, and there is a beautiful terrace on the 1st floor looking on the main square of Joyeuse old city center. When we bought it in 2009, we decided to renovate it step by step with one principle : give this place its soul back.