The Place d'Armes and the Grand and Lesser Stables are included in the World Heritage site because they were a part of daily life for the palace and the King.
The place d’Armes
Visitors access the palace after crossing the Place d'Armes. Its semicircular shape converges the streets and paths from the town toward the palace. On the other side of the square, the two symmetrical buildings of the Royal Stables close the huge esplanade. This ensemble, executed by Hardouin-Mansart in 1682, is composed of the Grand and Lesser Stables, where more than 1,000 people worked under Louis XIV.
The Grande Ecurie
Led by the Grand Squire of France, the Grand Stable was reserved for members of military nobility. Pages, young men working in the service of His Majesty, were trained here to become officers of the army. Teaching was very thorough (riding, arts, fencing) in this elite school. It also housed the King's horses, riding rings for training ... Today its equestrian tradition is still honored. The Academy of Equestrian Arts and the Gallery of the Coaches have each taken up residence here (see below "L'Académie du spectacle équestre”)
The Petite Écurie (closed to visitors).
The Lesser Stable, along with the Grand Stable, make up the Royal Stables. The Lesser Stable was directed by the First Squire (not to be confused with the Grand Squire). Royal pages were also trained here, though being trained at the Grand Stable was more prestigious.
The Académie du spectacle équestre
Grande Ecurie du Château de Versailles, Avenue Rockfeller , 78000 Versailles
Website - tel : 01 39 02 62 70.
Visit of the Academy on Wednesday and Saturday: 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Guided tour possible.
Accessible to those with reduced mobility.
The Academy of Equestrian Arts, founded by Bartabas in 2003, is now housed in the Royal Stables of the King. A place of creation and performance, the Academy of Equestrian Arts also trains riders from around the world.
Guided tour "behind the scenes of the Equestrian Academy"
Full/ reduced rate: €15/ €10.
Sunday at 12:30 p.m. Children from 8 years old.
A meeting is proposed to discover the work of the Academy:
La Voie de l'Ecuyer
Full price / reduced price: €25 / €16
Saturdays at 6 p.m. ; Sundays at 3 p.m.
Not recommended for children under 5 years old