The fortified manor houses in Annecy

The fortified manor houses are high places of the history of Annecy and its surroundings. Discover their destinies and their distinctive features by travelling the region.

More than mere residences, but not yet really castles, the fortified manor houses were born in France at the end of the 12th century, on the outskirts of the country towns. Properties of the cadets or of the parents of the great seigneurial families, they had a significant economic and defensive role. Today they are the pride of the towns and villages of Savoie. Particular locality: a certain number of them were fortified, in the same way as the castles of the Counts of Geneva.  Therefore It is not uncommon to encounter fortified manor houses with towers, ditches and palisades.

Some have been transformed, over the centuries, into villas of pleasure. They are today private properties, whose facades can be admired only during your walks around Lake Annecy. This is particularly the case of the Château de Monthoux, which you can notice at the entrance of Annecy, coming from Geneva. Not far from there, the castle of Proméry, fortified manor houses of the thirteenth century, also can be seen on the road to Geneva. Damaged by a fire in the 1960s, it was renovated. In Veyrier-du-Lac, the old fortified house became the Château de la Ruaz in the 18th century when she became the property of Jacques Vincent de la Ruaz.

Other buildings have experienced a more atypical fate, such as the Palais de l'Isle located on a peninsula of Thiou: old medieval fortified house used as toll, it has been reconverted successively into prison, court or asylum. "House in the shape of a galley", classified historical monument in 1900, it is today a museum that many curious come to visit. You can visit his cells today, but also its old courtrooms.

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