French mega-chef Alain Ducasse announced plans to open a restaurant at the Palace of Versailles in April, and now it appears the launch date is coming soon. Ducasse has revealed a timeline that targets a September debut for Ore, which will offer separate lunch and dinner experiences.
"During the day, the restaurant Ore is an elegant contemporary café, open to all," reads a press release. "A French-inspired menu with classics of our cuisine, alongside light and quick snacks, desserts, and gourmet pastries.
"In the evening, Ducasse au Château de Versailles is an exclusive dining experience. As the Palace slowly empties itself, the restaurant becomes a stage for grand dinners and exclusive events."
"Ore" is the Latin word for "mouth." Ducasse, who has accumulated an astonishing 21 Michelin stars over the course of his career, is opening the restaurant as part of a redevelopment project at the palace that also includes a 20-room hotel. Renovations are expected to cost over $15 million, and the final product "will remain faithful to the opulent, lavish style of the 18th century," according to CTV News. The hotel should open sometime in 2018, and it will allow visitors to spend the night on the palace grounds for the first time.
Ore was designed by architects Dominique Perrault and Frédéric Didier. The restaurant pays tribute to "the Sun King's splendor and many contemporary reinterpretations of historical decorative themes."
"Versailles is a dream that fascinates and impassions me," Ducasse says on his forthcoming restaurant's website. "Everything still amazes me as if each visit was my first. It is truly a privilege to bring my modest contribution to the palace's contemporary history."