In 1700 Margrave Ludwig Wilheim of Baden Baden contacted the famous Italian Architect Domenico Egidio Rossi, to expand his hunting palace at Rastatt, on which he visualized a grand residence only matched by the Palace of Versaille. Margrave unfortunately died in 1707 so did not see it completed, however his young widow Sibylla Augusta took reins of power and during her 20 years of rein, she overseen the completion of the Palace complex and its interiors. Some of her huge collection of porcelain can be seen here and at the Favorite Schloss, not far away, which was used for hunting parties, concerts and balls. In glass cases there are fine examples of meisen, gold gilded at Augsburg, a small teapot is one of only three in the world, one being in the Gettysburg Museum in New York and the other in a private collection. The Palace has been designed to display the might of an absolutist monarch in a baroque style.
Visitors to Rastatt palace must first cross an expansive Cour d`honneur, or grand courtyard. and are impossed upon by the huge three-wing complex. A golden statue of Jupiter brandishing a thinderbolt is surmounted on the main roof of the building, the corps de logis. The original is now inside and inhabits the Staircase. On the first floor is the garden room, highly ornate, and off from here ran the childrens rooms. The children were raised by their governesses and very rarely saw their parents, who lived in the first floor appartments. Leading up to the first floor is a wide stone staircase, above which is one of the most beautiful ceilings I have seen. The paintings on the higher part of the ceiling is framed by plaster stucco just below it. Throughout the rooms there are plaster cherubs everywhere around the ceilings smiling, cheekily down on the visitors below and gold gilt adorns much of the decorative wall and ceiling panels. The largest and most magnificent room is the Ahnensaal (ancestral room). The frescos that cover the room are not only the Margraves ancestors, but also a host of captured Ottomans – commemorating the Margraves victories in the wars against the Ottoman Empire, which has also earned him the nickname Türkenlouis (Louis of the Turks).
Rastatt palace is now open to the public, photos are not allowed inside the palace. The gardens are open to the public aswell. The palace also is home to the Military History Museum Wehrgeschichtliches Museum and the commemorative site for freedom movements in German history, Erinnerungsstätte für die Freiheitsbewegungen in der deutschen Geschichte.
Opening TimesRastatt Baroque residence
from April to October
Tuesday – Sunday and holidays 10.00 – 17.00 clock from November to March Tuesday – Sunday and holidays 10.00 – 16.00 clock Christmas & New Year 24, 25 and 31 Closed December 1st January 13.00 – 16.00 clock, last departure 15.00 clock 6th January 10.00 – 16.00 clock, clock last departure 15.00
ToursHourly tours , beginning of the last tour one hour before closing. Group tours by appointment through the Visitor Centre, also bookable in English and French. special tours according to the program, and by appointment
Military Museumfrom November to March
Tuesday – Sunday and holidays 10.00 – 16.00 clock from April to October Tuesday – Sunday and holidays 10.00 – 17.00 clock Christmas & New Year 24, 25 and 31 Closed December 1st January open from 13.00 clock contact Mr. Straße 18 76437 Rastatt Telephone (0) 72 22 34 2 44 Fax (0 72 22) 30 7 12
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