ROYAL RUSSIA: News, Videos & Photographs About the Romanov Dynasty, Monarchy and Imperial Russia - Updated Daily
« April 2014 »
1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30
Entries by Topic
All topics
400th Anniversary
A Russian Moment
Alexander I
Alexander II
Alexander III
Alexander Mikhailovich, GD
Alexander Palace  «
Alexandra Feodorovna
Alexandra Nicholayevna, GD
Alexandra Pavlovna GD
Amber Room
Anna Feodorovna, GD
Anna Pavlovna, GD
Beautiful Orthodox Churches
Benckendorff, Count Paul
Catherine II
Conspiracy Theories
Constantine Constantinovich, GD
Country Estates
Dmitri Pavlovich, GD
Dmitri Romanovich
Dowager Empress Maria
Eagar, Margaretta
Elena Vladimirovna, GD
Elizabeth Feodorovna GD
Elizabeth Petrovna, Empress
Ganima Yama
Grand Duchess Xenia Alexa
Grand Duke Mikhail Alexan
Grand Dukes
Holy Royal Martyrs
Imperial Russia
Kazan Cathedral
Kerensky, Alexander
Kolchak, Admiral
Maria Alexandrovna
Maria Feodorovna, Empress
Maria Pavlovna, Senior
Maria Vladimirovna GD
Marie Georgievna, GD
Mikhail Nikolayevich, GD
Nevsky, Alexander
Nicholas Alexandrovich GD
Nicholas I
Nicholas II
Nicholas Mikhailovich, GD
Nicholas Nicholayevich, GD
Nicholas Romanovich
Olga Alexandrovna GD
Olga Konstantinovna GD
Olga Nicholayevna GD
Paul Gilbert
Paul I, Emperor
Peter and Paul Fortress
Peter Nicholayevich, GD
Peter the Great
Prince Michael of Kent
Prince Nicholas Romanovich
Romanov Descendants
Royal Russia
Russian Art
Russian Church
Russian Cuisine
Russian Film
Russian History
Russian Imperial House
Russian Monarchy
Russian Orders
Russo-Japanese War
Sergei Alexandrovich
Sergei Alexandrovich GD
St. Petersburg
St. Theodore's Church
State Hermitage Museum
Stieglitz, Alexander
Stolypin, Pyotr
Tauride Palace
Tsarevich Alexis
Tsarskoye Selo
Vladimir Alexandrovich, GD
Winter Palace
Witte, Sergei
World War I
Wrangel, Pyotr
Yelagin Palace
Blog Tools
Edit your Blog
Build a Blog
RSS Feed
View Profile
You are not logged in. Log in
Friday, 4 April 2014
Alexander Palace Prepares for Phase II of Restoration
Topic: Alexander Palace

The Alexander Palace at Tsarskoye Selo
A request for tenders has been issued for Phase 2 of the restoration and reconstruction of the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoye Selo in Pushkin. The starting price of the competition is estimated at 41.4 million Rubles. Details are published on a portal of the state order: Customer - FGBUK “State Art and Architectural Palace and Park Museum-Preserve Tsarskoye Selo”. Applications may be submitted until April 23, to be considered and evaluated on April 28.  

The restoration and reconstruction work will involve the technical re-equipment of the building, and elements of restoration and adaptation for museum use. Wall and ceiling lamps, layers of contaminated plaster layer have caused excessive damage. Many other features of the palace are in poor condition, including engineering networks, which were last renovated in the 1970s and require complete reconstruction.

In 2011, work began on the reconstruction, restoration and adaptation of the basement of the building by LLC Architectural Studio 44. The new Alexander Palace Museum is now scheduled to open in 2018. It is estimated that the cost of the restoration work will be 2.2 billion Rubles.
For more information the Alexander Palace, its history and restoration, please refer to our directory situated on the left of this page. Click on the Alexander Palace, where you will find nearly 30 articles, plus 6 videos and dozens of historic and contemporary photographs. Note: each page of our blog holds 10 articles. Click on the Older link located in the bottom left hand side of each page to review more articles and videos on the Alexander Palace.
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 04 April, 2014 


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 8:26 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, 4 April 2014 9:12 AM EDT
Permalink | Share This Post
Tuesday, 18 February 2014
Former Imperial Furniture Factory in St. Petersburg Demolished
Topic: Alexander Palace
The former factory of F. Meltzer & Co., situated on the corner of  Kamennoostrovsky Prospekt and Karpovka Embankment has been demolished
Another piece of St. Petersburg’s Imperial past is no more. The building which housed the famed Meltzer furniture factory up until 1918 was demolished on February 6th.

One of the biggest names in the history of Russian furniture - F. Meltzer & Co, was founded in the 1860s by Johann Friedrich Meltzer. Once established, the firm was quickly appointed a supplier to the Russian Imperial Court, producing furniture for numerous Imperial residences, including the Winter Palace at St. Petersburg, the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoye Selo, the Farm Palace at Peterhof, as well as exclusive pieces for the palaces and mansions of Russia’s aristocracy. 

In 1880, the original factory was situated on Bolshoi Konushennoi ulitsa 17, and later moved to larger premises on the corner of  Kamennoostrovsky Prospekt and Karpovka Embankment. The new factory was built by the architect Vasily Schaub (1861-1934), it was his first project in St. Petersburg. At the turn of the century the Meltzer’s employed 400 people.

The Meltzer factory closed in 1918. During the First World War the factory manufactured propellers, devices, telephone and telegraph communication. During the Soviet years, the factory produced furniture for hospitals,  banks and offices. 

The destruction of the historic building has outraged preservation groups in the city who claim that the demolition was illegal. Lawyers representing the groups have filed complaints with local and regional government administrations. Developers plan to construct luxury residences on the vacant land. It is interesting to note that according to the, one of the developers, Studio 44, who plan to invest 3 billion rubles in new projects on the site, are also the same firm currently carrying out the restoration of the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoye Selo. 

Today, original pieces of Meltzer’s work can be seen on display in the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg and the Alexander Palace in Tsarskoye Selo.
For more information on F. Meltzer & Co., please refer to the following article;

F. Meltzer & CO. - Furniture Purveyor to the Russian Imperial Court 

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 18 February, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 5:39 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, 18 February 2014 6:46 AM EST
Permalink | Share This Post
Saturday, 18 January 2014
Restoration Work at the Alexander Palace Yields Hidden Secrets
Now Playing: Language: Russian. Duration: 3 minutes, 29 seconds
Topic: Alexander Palace
Workers carrying out restoration work in the basement of the Alexander Palace made several startling discoveries last week. After removing the brick walls, workers couldn’t believe their eyes: two secret passageways were sealed into the wall for more than half a century. Inside, they revealed two staircases, one completely preserved, and a small restroom.

Built in the 19th century, the area had been cemented over in the 20th century. It is known that many of the palace’s historic interiors were lost during the building's reconstruction after World War II, and that further alterations had been made during the years in which the Soviet navy occupied the former Imperial palace.

A well preserved staircase was discovered, the wooden railing had not even rotted. A second staircase made of wood was also discovered leading up to the former Valet’s Room, which formed part of Tsar Nicholas II’s private apartments housed in the east wing of the palace. Museum staff believe that the door was sealed with concrete during the postwar restoration of the palace. Then, a small restroom containing a toilet and decorated with 100-year-old Metlaskoy tiles was discovered. Museum staff believe that the restroom might have been used by Nicholas II, however, it is more likely that it was used by palace staff. 

Also located in the basement of the Alexander Palace is an underground passage, believed to be a servants' tunnel connecting the Kitchen Building with the palace. It was constructed in the 19th century by the Italian architect Silvio Amvrosievich Danini (1867-1942). He lived in St. Petersburg from 1886, graduating from the Academy of Fine Arts in 1892. From 1896, he was the architect of the palace administration of Tsarskoe Selo. During the 1900s, Danini decorated a number of interiors of the Alexander Palace. After World War II, the tunnels were sealed with concrete. Workers note that the underground passage connecting the Alexander Palace and Kitchen Building has been preserved in excellent condition. 

The Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Preserve must now decide what to do with a secret staircase - preserve or restore it, providing access to Nicholas II private apartments. They must also determine the fate and possible use of the tunnel, providing access to visitors or restricting its use for administrative purposes only. 
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 18 January, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 11:37 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, 18 January 2014 2:41 PM EST
Permalink | Share This Post
Tuesday, 14 January 2014
Restoration of the Alexander Palace Temporarily Suspended
Topic: Alexander Palace

"The restoration of the Alexander Palace - an architectural masterpiece and beloved home to the last Russian Emperor - is our long-cherished dream. However, for us it is crucial that the main event next year - the opening of the Museum of the First World War, which requires a lot of effort and resources must take presidence. As a result, work at the Alexander Palace has been temporarily suspended" - said Olga Taratynova, the director of the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum-Preserve.

The new Alexander Palace Museum is now scheduled to open in 2018. It is estimated that the cost of the restoration work will be 2.2 billion Rubles.
For more information on the restoration of the Alexander Palace, please refer to the following article;

The Revival of the Alexander Palace - with Photographs 

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 14 January, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 4:29 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, 14 January 2014 4:41 PM EST
Permalink | Share This Post
Saturday, 16 March 2013
My Russia: The Rebirth of the Alexander Palace
Topic: Alexander Palace


Two rows of freshly painted Corinthian columns cut across the central colonnade connecting the east and west wings of the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoye Selo. Photograph © Paul Gilbert (2012)

My first visit to the Alexander Palace was on September 5th, 1997. I have returned every year to discover new aquisitions, speak with the curators and staff, and to soak up the ambiance of this historic residence, its adjoining park and numerous pavilions. In the past few years my interest has been piqued even further with interesting new exhibitions and the initiation of long awaited restoration work on the palace.

After the departure of the Russian navy in 2009 the palace was officially handed over to the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum-Preserve. The palace's new custodians wasted no time implenting their plans to convert the neglected monument into a multi-use museum and exhibition complex. They restored the 3 State Rooms in six months, and turned the former children's rooms of Tsar Nicholas II into exhibition rooms. This was only the beginning!

My Russia is a series of articles which I write for Royal Russia, a unique publication that celebrates the Romanov dynasty and Imperial Russia in words and photographs. In the current issue I write about the history of the Alexander Palace as a museum since 1917, including restorations since World War II. Further, I provide details on the restorations which will continue through to 2018. I also offer a two-page study of the Restoration of the Alexander Palace Master Plan by Studio 44, the architectural studio in charge of the restoration of the Alexander Palace.

My Russia: The Rebirth of the Alexander Palace appears in Royal Russia Annual No. 3 (2013). The article is 11 pages in length and illustrated with numerous black and white photographs which I took myself during my visit to the Alexander Palace last summer. It is one of nine articles on the Romanovs, monarchy and Imperial Russia that appear in this issue.

The Alexander Palace captures the interest and imagination of Russophiles and Romanovphiles around the world. My article is the most current and up-to-date on the restoration and future of the last residence of Tsar Nicholas II and his family.

||| Click Here to Order Your Copy of Royal Russia No. 3 (2013) |||

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 16 March, 2013

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 8:14 AM EDT
Updated: Sunday, 17 March 2013 6:36 AM EDT
Permalink | Share This Post
Thursday, 17 January 2013
The Alexander Palace - A New Documentary
Now Playing: Language: Russian. Duration: 27 minutes, 42 seconds
Topic: Alexander Palace

Note: please allow 15 seconds for the video to begin 

The Russian Travel Guide in association with the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Preserve have produced a new documentary on the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoye Selo. The 27 minute documentary was filmed in the autumn of 2012, it is directed by Evgeny Belov and hosted/narrated in Russian by Eugenia Altfeld. 

The Alexander Palace was the beloved home of Tsar Nicholas II and his family. It was here that the last tsar was born in 1868, and it was from here that he was sent into exile and murdered along with his family and faithful retainers  at Ekaterinburg on July 17th, 1918.

The first part of the documentary explores the Alexander Park, its buildings and pavilions, including: Armoury, Chinese Village, White Tower, Children's Island, and Equine Cemetary.

The second part explores some of the historical interiors of the Alexander Palace which are currently open to the public, including the recently restored State Rooms.

This video is only available in Russian. If you do not understand Russian, do not allow that to deter you from watching and enjoying this stunning visual tour of the Alexander Palace and park.

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 17 January, 2013


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 12:05 AM EST
Updated: Thursday, 17 January 2013 8:17 AM EST
Permalink | Share This Post
Wednesday, 29 August 2012
Rare Book Returned to the Alexander Palace
Topic: Alexander Palace


Four millennia of universal history in four charts; for use at colleges and for history devotees, with a brief history of the Enlightenment by V.V.I. Schmidt – a St Petersburg-published book of 1823 which title page still bears the Tsarkskoye Selo Imperial Library stamp – has returned to the Alexander Palace reserve collection after the book left it over eighty years ago.

The book came back as a gift from Captain Peter Sarandinaki, the President and founder of the group called S.E.A.R.C.H. Foundation, Inc. with a mission to search for and recover the remains of two Romanov children. Mr Sarandinaki and other members of the group have done and will conduct more expeditions to the site of the murder of the Tsar’s family.

His grandfather, Colonel Kiril Naryshkin, was married to Anna Rozanova, the daughter of Lieutenant General Sergei Rozanov who was in charge of Admiral Kolchak’s White Russian troops that liberated Ekaterinburg from the Bolsheviks six days after the Romanov Imperial Family and their faithful servants were murdered. Rozanov and Naryshkin, the General’s adjutant, were among the first to enter the Ipatiev House.

The book Peter Sarandinaki together with his wife and two children brought back to the Museum was bought by his father in the 1930s at an American warehouse selling off unbidden auction items at nominal rates. The book graced their family collection for years. But as soon as Mr Sarandinaki found out the stamp on it was that of the Imperial Library, he contacted Tsarskoye Selo.

Our Museum is sincerely grateful to Captain Peter Sarandinaki and his family for their priceless gift.

© Tsarskoye Selo Palace-Museum Preserve. 29 August, 2012

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 10:54 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 29 August 2012 1:25 PM EDT
Permalink | Share This Post
Saturday, 25 August 2012
The Alexander Palace: A Walk Through the State Rooms
Now Playing: Language: NA - Music. Duration: 16 minutes, 50 seconds
Topic: Alexander Palace

The following 16-minute video (with musical accompaniment)  takes us through the State Rooms of the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoye Selo.

The restoration of the Portrait, Semi-Circular and Marble Halls were completed in 2010, marking the 300th anniversary of Tsarskoye Selo.

It was from the Semi-Circular Hall that Tsar Nicholas II, his family and retinue departed the Alexander Palace for the last time on August 1, 1917. From here they were taken to the Alexandrovsky Station, and taken by train into exile to Siberia.

© Royal Russia. 25 August, 2012

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 6:53 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, 27 August 2012 11:14 AM EDT
Permalink | Share This Post
Sunday, 29 July 2012
Lack of Funding Will Delay Alexander Palace Restorations
Topic: Alexander Palace


The restoration of the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoye Selo will drag on for years as the Ministry of Culture is unlikely to provide the necessary funding to carry out the restoration work before 2018.

Despite this setback, work is “ongoing though far from complete,” according to Nikita Yavein, of Studio 44, the firm who are carrying out the restoration of the palace. The ground (basement) floor of the building is currently being renovated.

To date, the palace facades and roof have been repaired. In 2010, the three State Halls were restored and opened to the public. Once the restoration is complete, the Alexander Palace will rank among the most important museums to visit in the St. Petersburg region.

For more information on the master plan to restore the Alexander Palace, please refer to the following link;


||| The Revival of the Alexander Palace |||

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 29 July, 2012


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 5:58 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 31 July 2012 6:06 PM EDT
Permalink | Share This Post
Saturday, 7 July 2012
Old Colour Postcards of the Alexander Palace
Topic: Alexander Palace


© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 07 July, 2012

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 11:01 PM EDT
Updated: Sunday, 8 July 2012 9:36 AM EDT
Permalink | Share This Post

Newer | Latest | Older