What: A 17th century château steeped in history where one can sleep, eat and play like aristocracy.

Where: Occupying 50 acres of tree covered woodlands; the Château is located approximately an hour northwest of Paris in the Aisne region.

Why: It's easy to understand why such esteemed historical French figures as Racine, La Fontaine, les Dumas and Jean Cocteau (who is rumored to have designed the grand staircase) all vacationed here.
The magnificent château, with its exquisite surrounding gardens, commands serenity and calm. The atmosphere is sumptuously old-world, from the grandly furnished suites to the selection of activities including fishing, swimming and tennis. Tradition is served up in the kitchen as well, where chef Thibaut Serin-Moulin shares the secrets to renowned French classics — from foie gras and seasonal vegetables to fish and soufflés — at the château's hands-on cooking school.