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Champagne Vranken à Reims - France

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Henry Vasnier,

the soul of Villa Demoiselle

At the turn of the century, Henry Vasnier, the at the origin of the Villa Demoiselle, chose this site for the view it offered on the Reims Cathedral.

Henry Vasnier was named universal legatee of Maison Pommery following the death of the owner in 1890. He was a prolific art collector and donated a fantastic collection to the Museum of Fine Arts in Reims.

He encouraged Madame Pommery to purchase Millet’s Les Glaneuses and commissioned works from Emile Gallé. He also called the members of the “L’Art Dans Tout” (Art in Everything) group to create the most modern house to be built at the time.

All the splendour of this early 20th century architectural treasure was given a new lease of life in 2008 thanks to the passion of its owners, Paul-François and Nathalie Vranken.

The Villa Demoiselle is a unique testimony to the collaborative effort of a group of architects, cabinet makers and decorators united by the same goal and drawing inspiration from both Art Nouveau and Art Deco.

The cellar, the garden and the kiosk

restored in their turn

In 2009, after two years of work, the cellar boasts an exceptional collection of rare vintages of the 20th century, collected together by the Vranken Champagne House: the Millésimes d’Or, the oldest of which dates back to 1907. The kiosk, refurbished in the same spirit as the mansion, between Art Nouveau and art deco, welcomes visitors and hosts a boutique, reserved for prestigious sales.

The garden was redesigned according to the plans of landscaper Edouard Redont dating back to 1909. Edouard Redont created in his native town Reims, Parc Pommery, today called Parc de Champagne, an estate of 70 hectares. He was also at the origin of the design of the garden of Château des Castaignes.

The ceiling light by Émile Gallé

Emile Gallé, an emblematic figure in the world of applied arts and a pioneer of Art Nouveau, is best known for his glass. Gallé’s glass creation, filigreed, multi-layered, blown, fashioned and worked on a wheel often displays a pronounced naturalism, born of his love for the natural sciences. It was precisely his predilection for plants that led him to the importance of drawings as preleminating work. His knowledge of the chemical intricacies of glass production, his talent for creating colour and his decorative genius made the founder of the School of Nancy one of the finest creators of decorative art.

The Majorelle desk at Villa Demoiselle

In 1732, Robert Lucas opened a tavern in English style, where cold meat and pudding were in the limelight. Almost two centuries later, in 1925, it was bought by Francis Carton, and the famous tavern then became the Restaurant Lucas Carton.

The famous wood panelling by Majorelle, excecuted in at least 4 years is composed by maple wood, sycamore and lemon tree of Ceylon. Today, they make part of the national heritage as a beautiful exemple of Art Nouveau.

The welcome desk, sculpted with irises, nowadays visible in the Villa Demoiselle, is decorated with an imposing Japanese style piece of marquetry representing a sunset over a pond.

Château des Castaignes,

the origin of the Demoiselle

In 1985, Paul-François purchases the Château des Castaignes in Montmort, built on the site called La Demoiselle in Montmort, a few kilometers away from Epernay.

The Château is perched on the hillside, in the heart of a park designed by Edouard Redont who also designed the park of Villa Demoiselle.

The idea arose to create a new cuvée for Vranken champagne called La Demoiselle de Champagne. Demoiselle was a common name for the dragonfly, which was an emblem for the Art Nouveau genius René Lalique.
Everything matched to make this first brut champagne, whose special bottle was a moving tribute to Art Nouveau.

Villa Demoiselle,

a residence with a fabulous destiny

In 2004, Paul-François Vranken acquired the Villa Demoiselle to establish the head office of the Champagnes Vranken. He initiated an ambitious refurbishment project in full respect of its original condition.

Based on documents from historical archives and material traces preserved on site, the team of contractors, mainly from the Champagne region, worked for four years on the refurbishment of the entire building, both outside and inside. Thanks to their knowhow, these craftsmen revived the brilliance of the mural stencil-painted decorations, revealed again the floral and geometric motifs of the stained-glass windows. 100 years after its construction, this architectural masterwork was renamed “Villa Demoiselle”.

Visit the Villa Demoiselle

Tony Selmersheim,

the interior designer of the Villa

Thanks to a very diverse education, the interior designer Tony Selmersheim (1871-1971) mastered the art of metalworking, the arts of fire, joinery, bookbinding and modern techniques, which were a constant source of inspiration for him.

He is the creator of the wood panelling at the entrance and several pieces of furniture which came to the Villa during the 21st century.

The Serrurier-Bovy furniture

Gustave Serrurier-Bovy, a pioneer of Art Nouveau in Belgium and a predecessor of Horta and Van de Velde in the field of decoration, is one of the leading figures in the revival of interior decoration.

While he espoused the sinuous lines of Art Nouveau, he started simplifying its forms from 1905 to reduce any reliance on technical means. His extremely pared-down geometrical style is inspired by the Art and Crafts Movement, which he discovered on his travels to England. His furniture is an intelligent blend of beauty and function, simplicity and sophistication, principles dear to the “L’Art dans Tout” (Art in Everything) group.