ALEXANDER PALACE: LAST IMPERIAL RESIDENCE OF THE ROMANOV FAMILY CLOSED UNTIL 2018!

19th century painting of the Alexander palace the last residence of the Romanov family before the Russian revolution
19th century painting of the Alexander palace the last residence of the Romanov family before the Russian revolution

Alexander Palace in Tsarskoe Selo – the last residence of the Romanov family before the Russian revolution – is closed to visitors for the next three years: until the year 2018.  The palace will undergo some large scale renovations in order to fix major structural problem as  well as restorations to bring it back to its original look prior to 1917, when the Romanov family resided there.

Aerial view of the Alexander palace the last residence of the Romanov family before the Russian revolution
Aerial view of the Alexander palace the last residence of the Romanov family before the Russian revolution

According to Olga Taratynova, Director of the State Museum at Tsarskoe Selo, these renovations are long overdue and are extremely necessary. “The pipes are leaking. The roof is leaking, we collect water in buckets and pour it out of windows. The original parquet floors will be raised and later replaced.”

 

 

Empress Alexandra, Grand Duchesses Olga, Tatiana, Anastasia and Tsarevich Alexei in their mother's bedroom at the Alexander Palace.
Empress Alexandra, Grand Duchesses Olga, Tatiana, Anastasia and Tsarevich Alexei in their mother’s bedroom at the Alexander Palace.

The most recent 2nd floor exhibition opened only 5 years ago, but as visitors walked around the palace they did not notice all the issues. The cellars of the palace, which had been occupied by Gestapo during World War II, have sunk and are now deeper by a few meters. Offices, cafe and souvenir shops will be set up there after the renovations.

Empress Alexandra in her study at the Alexander Palace
Empress Alexandra in her study at the Alexander Palace.

The  restoration phase will take place once all the structural issues are resolved. Rooms will be carefully restored based on numerous old photographs, which the conservators will find very useful, and the palace will look as close to how it did to when the Romanov family occupied it prior to 1917.

Tsarevich Alexei on the balcony of the Alexander Palace. It sounds like this balcony will also be restored.
Tsarevich Alexei on the balcony of the Alexander Palace. It sounds like this balcony will also be restored.

According to the museum director, the palace will not not be recognizable after these restorations – many things like the original walls and intricate balconies will return.  The plan is to reopen the palace-museum in Autumn of 2018.

Russian imperial family and their suite working in a garden outside of the Alexander Palace during their house arrest after the Russian revolution broke out.
Romanov family and their suite working in the garden outside of Alexander Palace during their house arrest after break out of the Russian revolution.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Take a look at the Alexander Palace as it looked in 2009 and prior to 1917 here on Laura Mabee’s awesome blog

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