LuxembourgOfficial – Interview with Vincent Gouverneur (Deloitte)

 Château du Pont-D’Oye: A Legacy of Gratitude 


The dilapidated Château du Pont-D’Oye, which was crying out for restoration, diverted Vincent Gouverneur from his plan to find a forested retreat for his family in the Ardennes. In a mission that preserves its heritage, he has transformed the Château into a shared cultural space that also recalls its industrial past. 


What did you find when you were alerted to the availability of the Chateau? 


I found the Chateau in a dilapidated state. It was damp, with a roof in disrepair and even vegetation encroaching into the living area. Everything – the water pipes, electricity, roof, and the lake and woods – required attention. But I saw through the ruin to the historic grandeur of a 17th-century mansion with its pond and seven-hectare park. I also wished to recall its industrial legacy: For over 400 years the estate hosted forestry, forging, and paper-making. It was also a center for hunting before it passed into the Nothomb family’s hands in 1932 and assumed a new legacy of culture and writing in a family space. 


What got you involved and what did you do? 


I felt an obligation to save this unique piece of local history as a way of giving back to the region that has given me so much. I also saw the opportunity to save the estate by taking advantage of its position, presence, and facilities as a perfect place for such events as weddings, company gatherings, and team building. Nothing was salvageable so initially we addressed the essentials of wind and weatherproofing the property itself. We also embarked on restoring the surroundings – emptying, cleaning, and restoring the banks of the pond that contributes so much to the atmosphere of the domain and revitalizing the woodland. 


The team strove to preserve the Chateau’s soul by engaging in respectful and authentic restoration process” 


What will be the legacy of your restoration of the Chateau? 


The restauration team strove to preserve the Chateau’s soul by engaging in a respectful and authentic restoration process. They sought to save such elements as a cob wall, beautiful slate masonry, and a magnificent wooden staircase. We championed local craftsmanship using old techniques, for example, lime coating with original color pigments to help waterproofing and breathing of the façade. We also set about modernizing and updating its facilities. We currently offer 12 rooms, designed with simplicity and modernity in mind. Additionally, a fully equipped cottage with six bedrooms and bathrooms is available for guests. Eventually, 60 people will be able to stay at the domain.