The Petit Trianon, designed by the architect Gabriel for Louis XV and seen as a neoclassical masterpiece, was given to the 19-year old Marie Antoinette as a wedding present in 1774 by her husband Louis XVI.
The Petit Trianon was Marie Antoinette's treasured hideaway where she could escape stifling court protocol and her royal responsibilities. No-one, not even, it was said, the king himself, was allowed to enter without the queen's permission.
She would invite Louis XVI to watch amateur plays she and her favoured courtiers performed in a theatre. There was even a hamlet for her to play at being a countrywoman.
The house is split into a "noble" floor of 10 separate apartments for aristocrats, and hidden servants quarters below, most of which visitors have never seen.
To ensure royals never crossed their staff, the dining room table was conceived to be mechanically lowered and raised through the floorboards so that the servants below could set places out of sight. The contraption was never completed.