While you are in Moscow, the Kremlin is surely a must-visit. Dawned with fairy tail architecture and lavish decoration the Grand Kremlin Palace is within the Kremlin complex. It is a unique ensemble of pre-modernist Byzantine-Russian architecture. A seat of power it was formerly the Tsar’s residence. This palace is now the official state residence of the President of Russia.
History and construction of the Grand Kremlin Palace
The need for a Grand palace within the Kremlin complex was felt long back under the rule of Empress Catherine II. But the project was approved and actual construction started only in 1838. The chief architect and designer was master Konstantine Thon, and then Emperor Nicolas I also participated in the finalization of the architectural design. The Grand Kremlin palace was to be designed in such a way that it blends seamlessly with the other buildings in the Kremlin complex and also maintains the look of the older palaces which stood before. It took about 10 years to finish and once completed the exteriors did indeed blend with the 15th-18th century palaces which stood earlier within the complex. The palace incorporated the earlier standing structures, notably the Hall of facets, the Terem Place, and nine churches into it. The palace is two-storeyed though it gives an impression of a three-story building when looked from outside. It covers a massive 25000 sq m floor area and has about 700 rooms, a grand entrance hall and five magnificent halls.
The Halls of the Grand Kremlin palace
The entrance hall of the palace is intricately designed in marble and granite. The arched stairways leading to the hall, facing the Moskva rivers is easily the most recognizable picture of the palace where all the presidents go through before taking their oath. The interiors of the hall are adorned with giant chandeliers and ornamental arched windows in white deco walls with intricate carvings.
The Vladimirsky hall is in the centre of the Grand Kremlin Palace and is designed in a round walkthrough fashion. The hall is dedicated to Order of Great Prince Vladimir who ruled in the early 10-11th century. The hall is in Pantheon shape and is lit by a round window in the centre.
The Georgievsky Hall in Grand Kremlin palace dedicated to the Order of St Great Martyr George is the most honourable hall in all of Russia. It features cut-outs of 545 large army units and over 10000 names of officers and soldiers adorn its walls.
The Alexandrovsky hall was established by Empress Catharine I in 1775 after the Order of Saint Pius Price Alexander Nevsky who was made famous by victories over German and Swedish invaders.
Andreevsky hall in Grand Kremlin palace is dedicated to the highest order in the Russian empire. This was initially considered to be the supreme imperial hall of Kremlin, and the throne of Emperor was situated here. This is to date restored and you can catch a glimpse of it under a decorated baldachin. The inauguration ceremony of Russian presidents takes place in this hall.
The Ekaterininsky hall, dedicated to the order of St Catharine was also used as the throne room for emperors. It is closed now for public
Apart from the halls, the Grand Kremlin palace complex also houses the Terem palace which was the seat of Moscow Tsars during the 17th century. This palace is open to visitors and you can see the epitome of luxury and wealth of the Tzar era during the visit. You will really admire all the rooms which are adorned with exquisite paintings, beautifully crafted tile windows, and rich carved interiors.
What to expect
Along with the tour of Kremlin cathedrals and square, you should definitely combine a tour of the Grand Kremlin Palace, which will give you a deep insight into the history and significance of the Russian Tsar era. You should definitely pay a visit to the palace which is just not a symbol of luxury and power, but also a moment of history which is frozen in time, speaking a thousand words. There are a lot of Kremlin tour options available that incorporate Kremlin palace in them.
For checking them out and also to plan and book your tours across Moscow, Russia, and beyond, do visit Pickyourtrail.com and make your wish of visiting the land of the fairytale come true.