Over the last several months, we have secured the future of our 12th-century Château Cramirat, the only Templar site in the Valley of Mankind in Périgord, France. A heavy weight has been lifted off our château’s age-old shoulders… The ancient roof tiles have been removed and set aside for retiling at a later stage in our renovations, and we’re marveling at the original beam structure that has been exposed, looking remarkably like a sky-facing ship’s hull.
The château walls worried us the most, swelling from the weight of the years and showing clear signs of wear and tear that had to be tended to, immediately. This opened the way to fix deep fissures that appeared over time in the north facade and the northern part of both the eastern and western facades, to fortify these massive walls.
As work progressed, the unique architectural features of the château’s tower were carefully conserved, with the grand entrance at the foot of the tower and the Lauze-tiled roof topping it like a triple-layered crown. A spiraling three-story flight of stairs sits inside the tower, serving as the main stairwell for the entire château, letting natural light come in through three large windows, one on each floor. The grand entrance bears an enigmatic crest, the roof rests on the top of the tower via corbel machicolations, and the window trims are decorated with delicate floral ornamentation. Many other rare architectural elements were uncovered throughout the château and repaired or restored, such as the chiseled 16th-century architraves on the second-floor windows.
We’re making Château Cramirat stronger, for at least another 800 years, in this unique partnership between the French authorities, ABF, DRAC, French Ministry of Culture, Office of the Mayor of Sergeac, and us. Leaving no stone unturned, our joint effort is truly exciting and we are welcoming more collaborative partners to join us as we quickly advance into the second phase of restoring this magnificent Templar masterpiece.
Château Cramirat is a remarkable historical landmark that served as the chief commandery and seat of the Templar Grand Master in Périgord, France. Today it houses several of our global enterprises, operating to continue in the footsteps of those ancient protectors and realize their humanistic code.