French Chateaux vs. English Stately Homes – battle of the wedding blogs!

Aargh! My lovely wedding blog got hijacked by the French! But fear not… we’re here to entertain you and I’d like to introduce the very lovely Monique who will be writing at you today. She’s ace… enjoy! Claire xxx

Bonjour, I’m Monique from French Wedding Style Blog. Don’t worry this is still English Wedding, but Claire and I have traded blogs! Well for today at least, as we are embarking on a debate of French vs. English wedding styles with the first battle looking at French Chateaux vs. English Stately Homes.

French chateau wedding blog ideas (1)

Photographer Credit Javon Longieliere | Venue: Chateau Challain (links below)

If you miss Claire hope over to my blog where she is instilling the various delights of English stately homes to my readers, I am here to persuade you on the virtues of a wedding in a French Chateau.

French chateaux – wedding blog by French Wedding Style

Chateau – the word conjures up images of a fairytale wedding, but of course everyone’s fairytale is different. This is not a problem with the vast variety of different styles, locations and facilities on offer across France that can cater to your wedding dream.

What actually is a Chateau? From old French for chastel, from the Latin castellum, a Chateau is literally a castle. As destination weddings to France have become more popular, the term Chateau has been increasing applied to venues and also includes French manor houses, large country houses and estates where wine is produced.

Together we are going to look at a range of wedding styles and how these can be ideally suited to a French wedding venue.


For many brides looking to get married in a Chateau it is about the fairytale and France is fully of idyllic fairytale worthy Chateaux. Of course all fairytales are different, but picture neogothical architecture with Rapunzel towers set in the most picture perfect lush country settings. For many brides the wedding day is their chance to be a princess for the day, be the star in their own stage production and be queen of their own fairytale castle.

So along with the impressive fairytale castle silhouette, French Chateaux also have stunning interiors the likes are seen on movie sets and lifestyle magazines. For any bride and groom, the interiors create beautiful backdrops for your wedding photographers and require minimal decoration, saving on budget and resources.

Set in the Loire Valley, the region of castles is one such fairytale castle built in the 19th century for the Count and Countess of La Rochefoucauld-Bayers, by famous Paris architect Louis Visconti, who built the Louvre extension! And if you are creatively inspired, why not actually have a fairytale production at your fairytale wedding!

French chateau wedding blog ideas (2)
French chateau wedding blog ideas (3)

Photographer Credit Javon Longieliere
Venue: Chateau Challain

Rustic Farmhouse

With so much choice of wedding venues in France, if you are looking to plan a rustic farmhouse, less formal wedding there are plenty of choices. Set amongst rolling hills in the beautiful French countryside, a character Manor House that has been restored can provide understated luxury, with charming and relaxed atmosphere for the wedding celebrations.

Choosing a rural Manor House also opens up the opportunity to indulge your guests in the French countryside with an outdoor wedding ceremony and reception. Do I need to mention the weather?? An outdoor wedding under a floral arch, whilst your guests watch in summer attire, is only possible due to the beautiful weather that is readily available in France.

With the combination of beautiful weather against a backdrop of rustic charm, many Manor Houses come complete with summer kitchens and outdoor terraces offering your guests a readymade stage for the wedding reception celebrations. Choosing a Manor House also means that the neighbours are limited so the celebrations can happily go on until 4am, much is the custom in French weddings.

French chateau wedding blog ideas (4)
French chateau wedding blog ideas (7)

Photographer Credit: Bastide St Mathieu
Venue: Bastide St Mathieu

DIY French Wedding

If you have you heart set on a wedding in France, but your budget doesn’t allow for the options mentioned above – then get creative! As I said there are so many wonderful venues in France, that if you can think outside the wedding box with a bit of research and compromise you can make your French wedding dream come true. Don’t just search for wedding venues, think boutique hotels, restaurants, golf courses, spas, farms and private accommodation such as villa rental.

The weather – okay I am going to use this again, but the beautiful weather can open up the options when creating a DIY wedding. You don’t have to worry about the formalities of hiring tables and chairs fit for a English Country Home, create a relax wedding picnic with blankets, buffet style catering and retro themed picnic signage.

Who needs constant entertainment or a formal drinks reception when you have a wedding venue with stunning views! Select a venue such as 260 year old former Béarnaise Farm of Ferme de Candeloup, with views over the Pyrenees and surrounding vineyards your guest will be happy enjoying the beautiful weather with a glass of locally and dare I say budget friendly sourced wine in their hand.

No matter what your wedding style is a wedding in a Fairytale French Chateau or Rustic Farmhouse is a once in a lifetime adventure for your wedding guests. And given the beautiful weather (okay 4th time) and destination abroad there is always the option of extending their stay and making it into a vacation.

So there you have it my love of French Chateaux as wedding venues. Don’t forget Claire has her stiff upper lip and is putting her argument over on French Wedding Style, so hope on over and looking forward to seeing who scores the first point in French vs English wedding style!

French chateau wedding blog ideas (5)
French chateau wedding blog ideas (6)

Photographer Credit Roger Bruton, Ferme de Candeloup
Venue Credit: Ferme de Candeloup

My huge thanks to Monique for sharing her chateaux and very creative wedding photos from France today! Pop over to French Wedding Style blog if you’d like to re-convince yourself that English stately homes are still better than chateaux… or are you dead set on moving over to Provence now?! Monique and I would love to read your comments, don’t be shy!

Claire xxx

Claire Gould

Claire spends her days writing - either in beautiful calligraphy or online. She lives on the edge of the English Lake District only minutes away from the beach, where she loves to escape and unwind. Claire's calligraphy can be found at Claire launched the English Wedding Blog in November 2009 - it's been a top 10 UK wedding blog ever since, with a regional focus we hope you LOVE.



  • Comparing buildings is hard as there’s a lot of great one’s either side of the gap. Slightly more stable and predictable weather is probably quite desirable. But then umbrellas and wellies are cool…

    So how is the winner being judged?

    • Claire Gould
      7 years ago

      Nathan, you’re a true Brit: “umbrellas and wellies are cool” – hehe. I love it!
      Claire x
      ps I think we’ll just assume we’re all winners here – the land of wedding blogs is a lovely friendly place, especially when we can hop across the channel for a bit of fun!

  • Does it count if I comment and vote for French venues again?? Hope you all loved reading about French venues as much as I loved putting this together
    Monique xx

    • Claire Gould
      7 years ago

      hee… but no Monique, it doesn’t. 😉
      I loved reading your blog – and being part of it for a day! Those costumes are pretty spectacular aren’t they?!
      Claire x

  • Looch
    7 years ago

    As much as I love the traditional look of an English venue (especially those stately homes, halls) I think for sheer drama and presence that first image of Chateau Challain is difficult to beat. Utterly stunning, imposing yet beautiful!

  • Hollydawn
    7 years ago

    Great post Monique! I may be biased, but consider this my vote for the French side 🙂 Particularly that farm!

    • Claire Gould
      7 years ago

      Looch and Hollydawn you’re barred 🙂 Hee – only kidding.
      Thanks for your fab comments!
      Claire xx

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