26 km south of St. Petersburg, this small residential town, very close to Pushkin and the Catherine's Palace, is known for its superb English-style park of more than 600 ha and its Palladian-style palace with its distinctive arched shape built on the plans of Charles Cameron on the orders of Empress Catherine II.
In 1778, two modest wooden houses were built there construites : the Paullust ("Paul's Pleasure") and the Mariental ("Valley of Mary"). The place was successively named Pavlovskoye, then Pavlovsk The present appearance of the palace, which became the property of Empress Maria Fyodorovna after the death of Paul Ier, reflects the taste of this dernière : elegant refinement of grey and pink tones, blue and jaune ; subtle shades of Karelian birch wood and pastel-coloured marbles .
Elliptical in shape, the main courtyard of the palace is adorned in the centre with the statue of Paul Ier. Flanked by white columns, the main building of the complex is topped by a rotunda with columns and a flattened dome. Constantin Constantinovich, great-grandson of Paul Ier, was the last to inherit the palace before it was transformed into the Museum of Interior Decoration.
The beautiful Pavlovsk Museum occupies 45 salles of the palace of Paul Ier, with the countless masterpieces that peuplent : antique statues, a rich collection of paintings from the 17th and XVIIIe siècles, sumptuous furniture in private apartments, elegant decorations in reception halls. But the museum also offers the visitor the wonders of an English landscaped park that combines the natural environment with picturesque artificial landscapes.
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