Peterhof means “Peter’s Court” and indeed it was. The Peterhof Palace was commissioned by Peter the Great. The palace complex and gardens designed to rival France’s Versailles. Just like most of St. Petersburg, the Peterhof Palace designed by the best European architects and designers.
The original complex was not as grand as it was today. Most of its features were for practical purposes. The Upper Gardens were once vegetable farms and the ponds used to house edible fish. No expense was spared in the efforts to beautify the complex.
The efforts paid off and the Peterhof Palace is now one of the great royal palaces of Europe. It is also a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Peterhof Palace in WWII
The palace complex was endangered in WWII when it became a battleground. When the palace was captured by German forces, palace employees scrambled to save the palace treasures and fountains.
A memorial stands in the Lower Gardens to honor Russian forces that attempted to reclaim the palace.
When the war ended, the Peterhof Palace was nearly in ruins. All of the original fountains were destroyed. Part of the palace was bombed and the rest of it left to burn. Restoration begun as soon as the war ended and continues to this day.
Regaining its Old Glory
You wouldn’t see any scars on Peterhof today. All of its fountains were lovingly recreated the Russian people. The palace structure was rebuilt into its former glory and now stands as a symbol of Russian excellence and resilience in old and modern times.
You can now see how Russia was like under imperial rule. Visit the grand gardens that surround Peterhof palace and marvel at the towering water fountains. You can experience how it is to walk in its luxurious halls and behold its facade. Come and see Peterhof Palace, and step into Russia’s imperial past.
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