Macron criticised for celebrating 40th birthday in royal style; AFP

France – The Loire Valley between Sully-sur-Loire and Chalonnes

French President Emmanuel Macron on Saturday celebrated his birthday at the iconic chateau of King Francois I, a choice denounced by critics as an example of how he is “cut off from the people”.

Macron, who turns 40 on Thursday, is spending the weekend with his wife Brigitte and extended family at the chateau of Chambord in France’s Loire Valley, local French newspaper La Nouvelle Republique reported.

With its fairy tale facade, elaborately turreted roofline and vast grounds, Chambord is probably the valley’s best-known Renaissance chateau, located about 200 kilometres (125 miles) southwest of Paris.

Macron and his family will stay at one of the cottages on the vast estate, French media said, with a birthday gala to be held Saturday evening in one of the castle’s 440 rooms.

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