Maryinsky Palace – A Breathtaking Example of Baroque Architecture
Completed in 1752, the majestic Mariyinsky Palace stands on a hilly bank alongside the Dnieper River in Kiev, Ukraine. This superb example of Baroque architecture serves as the official ceremonial residence of the President of Ukraine and is located alongside the Verkhovna Rada parliament neo-classical style building.
The Mariyinsky Palace was constructed at the request of the Russian Empress Elizaveta Petrovna and was designed by Russia’s most famous architect at the time, Bartolomeo Rastrelli. Sadly, Empress Elizaveta did not live to see the completed palace and the first royal figure to live in the palace was Empress Catherine II in 1787. The palace became the main residence of Governors-General in the late 18th to early 19th centuries.
During the years of Russian Civil War (1917-1920) the Mariyinsky Palace was used as a military headquarters. In the 1920s the palace became the home of an agricultural school before becoming a museum. Extensive damage caused during World War II was restored in the late 1940s with more restoration work being carried out in the early 1980s.
The pale blue and cream exterior of Mariyinsky Palace beautifully complements the landscaped gardens surrounding the building. The interior of the palace is richly decorated in pastel shades with gilt-edged finishes. Exquisite works of art by renowned Ukrainian artists adorn the walls of the many rooms of the palace, while intricately designed chandeliers hanging from high ceilings enhance the grandeur of the interior of Mariyinsky Palace.
Today, the majestic Mariyinsky Palace is used for official receptions, as well as being the venue for important summits where world leaders have at various times discussed matters of mutual concern. Visitors who have passed through the doors of Mariyinsky Palace include U.S. Presidents Nixon, Clinton and Bush, while British Premier Thatcher, German Chancellor, Kohl and French President Mitterrand have also been guests at the palace.
If you are wondering where to spend your next vacation, why not visit Ukraine and explore some of its natural, cultural and historical treasures, such as beautiful Mariyinsky Palace.