Have you ever dreamed of attending a masked ball in the Château de Versailles?
Did you even know such events exist? Well they do, and it’s a sort of pilgrimage for many who attend each year!
The Masked Ball Versailles
…or Le Grand Bal Masqué du Château de Versailles is an annual all-nighter event usually held in June. It’s a party vibe with incredible performances and a fancy dress code requiring that everyone dresses up in 18th-century styling… and wears a mask!
If you’ve never seen Sofia Coppola’s film Marie Antoinette, you could use that as a starting point for inspiration.
The Masked Ball Versailles takes place on the grounds of the chateau but not inside the official apartments and should not be confused with Les Fêtes Galantes which is a different Versailles event for diehard 18th-century enthusiasts.
Les Fêtes Galantes
Les Fêtes Galantes is a formal affair with a very strict dress code and is something akin to how the royal court might have passed their evenings in the Chateau. It takes place in the Hall of Mirrors and surrounding apartments and there are several activities including a dance class. It is intimate, and elite, and the effort that guests put into their costumes is EXTRAordinary to witness. I mean, jaw-dropping. They have a fan account on Instagram here
Which Ball is more your style?
I was lucky enough to photograph a wonderful group of people attending the Masked Ball this year, 2023. Big thanks to @allie.in_wanderland – Allie has produced an amazing guide for visitors to the event. Follow her and find the guide on her website.