The Stroganov Palace
The great Bartolomeo Rastrelli built many palaces in St.Petersburg. The Stroganov Palace built in 1753-1754 is of them. It’s the only palace which the royal architect built not for the Imperial family but for a nobleman of great influence Baron Sergei Stroganov.
The Stroganov family is one of Russia’s most famous families. Even those who have never visited Russia and have no interest in the Russian history know the beef dish served in a sour cream sauce Beef Stroganoff. A legend says that it’s at this palace that the family’s chef first cooked the dish which became world famous.
The most famous person of the family was Count Alexander Stroganov – the biggest landowner, industrialist and mine owner, President of the Imperial Academy of Arts, arts collector and patron, who had a very grand lifestyle. Entertainments given daily were unrivalled.
The palace was a real home for the Stroganov family till the Revolution. The interiors were remodeled by many different architects, the most brilliant being Andrei Voronikhin.
During Soviet times, the palace housed the Institute of Plant Breeding Research and other institutions, and had communal apartments on the third storey. Since 1988, the palace has been owned by the Russian Museum.
The most interesting interiors are:
- The Great Hall, which retains Rastrelli’s design
- Gala Dining room (or Corner Dining room) originally designed by Rastrelli and redecorated by Voronokhin– Mineralogical Study, which is the most unusual interior of the palace designed by Andrei Voronokhin and rightly considered a masterpiece of interior design.