Charlottenburg Castle

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Andrea Schulte-Peevers
@andreaschulte-peevers
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berlin.de dw.com thelocal.de bbc.co.uk

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Lo Schloss Charlottenburg is a baroque palace located in the western district of Charlottenburg in Berlin. The palace is today one of the few remaining buildings that show the grandeur of the dynasty Hohenzollern which for centuries ruled Prussia and dominated other German regional states. Schloss Charlottenburg is one of the most beautiful and visited monuments in the city.

Short story

Schloss Charlottenburg was originally built as a summer residence for Sophie Charlotte, wife of the Elector of Brandenburg, Frederick III. The architects who worked on the initial project were Johann Arnold Nering and Martin Grünberg, but construction continued throughout the 18th century with the construction of new wings and the installation of further decorations. With its continuous additions, the palace presents itself today as a refined blend of architectural styles, from Baroque to Rococo.



Like so many other structures in the German capital, Schloss Charlottenburg was severely damaged during the tumultuous years of World War II. Much of the building was destroyed in an Allied bombing in 1943. The reconstruction work began in 1950 and after many years of careful renovation, the building is back in operation and to its former glory.

The palace

The Schloss Charlottenburg palace is divided into two sections: Old castleNew wing.

Old castle

The most central and oldest part of the palace is the Altes Schloss (Old Palace), also called Nering Eosander Burrow in honor of the two architects who designed it. Here you can visit the apartments of Frederick I and Queen Sofia Charlotte. The rooms are decorated in a Baroque style with stuccoes, wood paneling, gilded ornaments and frescoes. Unfortunately not all the frescoes have been restored.

In the Old Palace we find "The Oak Gallery", or "the Quercia gallery“, An oak-paneled room with oval family portraits depicting members of the House of Hohenzollern.



New wing

Some of the palace's most beautiful rooms can be admired in the Neuer Flügel (new wing), which reopened to the public in December 2014 after a restoration that lasted about two years. With its 150 meter long facades, inside you can visit the luxurious ones private homes of Frederick the Great and the elegant apartments of Frederick William II. Frederick the Great was an admirer of French painting and much of his collection of eighteenth-century paintings is on display in private rooms.

The most particular rooms in the Neuer Flügel are the two large rooms:

  • White hall (white room), a magnificent dining room.
  • Golden gallery (gilded gallery), a 42 meter long ballroom decorated with Rococo mirrors and ornaments.

Also, don't miss the collection of marble statues from the XNUMXth century, on display in the vestibule.

The park of Schloss Charlottenburg

Il Charlottenburg palace it is renowned for its wonderful Baroque garden, originally created between 1697 and 1701 by Siméon Godeau, a pupil of André Le Nôtre, the creator of the magnificent gardens of the Palace of Versailles. Godeau created a regular garden in the French Baroque style with flower beds and hedges cut in geometric patterns.

New pavilion

There are many interesting structures in the park. The rectangular building next to the Neuer Flügel is the New pavilion (new pavilion), also called Schinkel-Pavillon, in honor of its architect, the great Karl Friedrich Schinkel, who built the pavilion in 1825 at the behest of King Frederick William III, who wished to use the building as a small refuge. The king took inspiration from Villa Chiatamone in Naples, where he stayed during a trip to Italy. In front of the pavilion there are two columns, with statues on top symbolizing victory.



gazebo

Il gazebo it is located in the northern area of ​​the park Schloss Charlottenburg. It was made by Frederick William II and built between 1788 and 1790 as a tea house, although it looks like a miniature palace. The Belvedere was destroyed during the Second World War but rebuilt between 1956 and 1960. Today it houses a collection of XNUMXth century porcelain produced by Berlin's master craftsmen.

Mausoleum

On the western side of the palace garden is the Mausoleum, a temple built in 1810 by Heinrich Gentz ​​as a burial place for Queen Luise. It was later expanded to include the sarcophagi of other members of the royal family, including Frederick William II, Emperor William I and Queen Augusta.

Equestrian statue of Frederick William I

At the entrance of the Schloss Charlottenburg, in the middle of the garden, there is a large statue of a man on horseback, Frederick William I. It was designed in 1698 by Andreas Schlüter and built for the king. At the base of the statue there are four chained warriors, which symbolize the four temperaments (which derive from antiquity where they were used to describe the various personalities).


The statue was initially placed on the Kurfürstenbrücke, a bridge near the Stadtschloss (city palace), but during the Second World War the statue was submerged at the base by the flooding of the Tegeler See. The statue was recovered in 1952 and after the restoration works it was moved to the entrance of Schloss Charlottenburg.

How to reach us

The Charlottenburg Palace is located in Berlin in the district of Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf. The address is Spandauer Damm 10-22. Any of the main roads leading into the city such as the A 10, A100 and A12 motorways will lead to the building, simply follow the exits for Berlin center (Berlin Zentrum) and Spandauer Damm.


For those who prefer to use public transport it will be possible to reach Schloss Charlottenburg with ease:

  • By bus, you can board number 309 and get off at Sophie-Charlotte-Platz.
  • With the U-Bahn it is possible to take the U2 line and get off at the same stop. From here, there will be a short walk to the palace.
  • Con la S-Bahn you can get closer, getting off at the stop adjacent to the west part of the building.


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