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Visiting this place was a renaissance dream come true. I've been saving Versailles my whole life for something special but have always, always been obsessed with French interior and architecture. So when Sophie mentioned that she would like to take me to one of her favourite places to just be around in and Waddesdon Manor came up…I googled and screamed. If you find the place familiar, you'd probably have seen it's interiors in films like The Queen, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. And television series Downtown Abbey.

The country house was built inbetween 1874 and 1889 in the Neo-Renaissance style of a french chateau for Ferdinand James von Rothschild, a politician and member of the very prominent Rothschild family. Because it was the Rothschilds preferred style for their living, it was also known as Goût Rothschild. What really intrigued me after reading up about Waddesdon and the Rothschilds was how their taste alone could influence other rich and powerful families including the Rockefellers and soon a whole era which was the American Gilded Age. This appearance or aesthetic continued to be so influential and went on in the twentieth century, affecting designers like Yves Saint Laurent with his beautiful masterpieces. Baron Ferdinand was an art collector so the chateau was furnished with extensive collections of French 18th-century tapestries, boiseries, furniture and ceramics, English and Dutch paintings and Renaissance works of art- some of which belonged to Marie Antoinette herself. The property has been passed on to generations after the Baron passed away in 1898 (Not a very long time living in his beautiful home) where the collections were further developed. The last member of the Rothschilds to own Waddesdon bequeathed the house and its contents to the National Trust in 1957 and has since then been one of the National Trust's most popular paid-entry property.

In all it's beauty, what stood out to me was the lavishness of the entire property and the meticulous attention to detail. The construction of Waddesdon revived imitation of French Renaissance styles in the United Kingdom. Their reused architectural elements from neglected castles and palaces included fireplaces, floors, ceilings and doors and I just couldn't help thinking to myself at how pretty darn good they were at this whole buying, collecting and laying it all out thing. So glad I got to visit and glad it's always going to be there for me to come back to whenever I'm visiting Sophie from now.

If you're in the UK and would like to visit the Manor, it is located at Bicester Rd, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire HP18 0JH, United Kingdom. Not far off from the outlet shopping centre village so come for a stroll in the premises before heading to do some shopping and lunch at the village. Perfect way to spend an afternoon and pretty much how we spent ours that day.