The Holarussia company invite you to the private thematic tour Saint Petersburg Palaces and the Menshikov palace.
The Russian tours in St. Petersburg show all kinds of different mansions in the city
Our tour shall take place in the oldest palace building of St. Petersburg. The residence of the first Governor General of the city Alexander Menshikov is located on the Vasilyevsky island.
During the Private thematic tour Saint Petersburg Palaces and the Menshikov palace you will hear interesting historical facts about Mechnikov
☞ Menshikov was one of the closest associates of Peter the Great.
- Tsar Peter made fabulous gifts to Menshikov and granted him unprecedented privileges. The whole island where the palace was built was also a gift to Menshikov.
- By 1714 the lavish stone palace of Prince Menshikov was almost completed. At the same time Peter the Great strictly prohibited to build housing out of stone. Although the reason for this prohibition may seem futile the penalty for the failure to comply was severe. The prohibition resulted from the fact that the stone houses took longer to build than the wooden ones and the tsar wanted to speed up the construction of his new capital. So before 1714 the tsar was the only owner of a stone palace. And now his best friend also got one. And his palace was much larger and more spacious than the palace of Peter the Great. That is why Peter the Great held receptions and banquets here.
- The construction of the palace began in 1710. Two houses were being built simultaneously. The wooden one completed in just one season was called “The Ambassadors’ House”. Ceremonial receptions and “assemblies” were held here. The stone mansion that later became the Menshikov palace was being constructed according to the project of the architect D. M. Fontana. The ground floor was completed in one year.
Later on different additions were being made to the building until 1727:
- The eastern and western wings.
- Courtyard houses.
- The territory around the palace was developed.
Peter the Great as well as the owner both received visitors in this palace. The first floor housed the Assembly Hall where the emperor received European and Russian ambassadors.
But there came the moment when the friendship changed: Menshikov fell from grace. The Prince was exiled, the palace was turned into a warehouse and later Empress Anna Ioannovna gave the palace to the future First Russian Cadet Corps Military School. The building was redesigned for a school and a church for cadets was set up there. In 1888 emperor Alexander the Third ordered a museum of the First Cadet Corps to be established here.
Throughout the history the palace housed:
- the Military-Political Academy
- the Military-Transport Academy
- the Institute of Law
In 1967 the palace was turned over to the State Hermitage and restored to its original look. Nowadays the Menshikov palace is part of the St. Petersburg shore excursions and houses a museum. One of the first buildings of the city demonstrates its architecture of the beginning of the 18th century and its interiors. Lavish oak studies and old Dutch tiles, furniture of Peter the Great’s time and paintings – as if breathing in the air of the old mansion you go back in time. The expositions show the Russian routine life of the second half of the 18th century, partly restored living quarters. Among the exhibits you will see the personal belongings of Peter the Great and Prince Menshikov. You shall see all of this on the Private thematic tour Saint Petersburg Palaces and the Menshikov palace .
The Holarussia company invite you to Private thematic tour Saint Petersburg Palaces and the Menshikov palace with personal guide!