Facts About Rundāle Palace Museum
The palace was built in two periods, from 1736 until 1740 and from 1764 until 1768.
In 1735 Duke of Courland Ernst Johann von Biron bought land in Rundāle with an old medieval castle in the territory of a planned summer residence. The old castle was demolished and construction after the design of Bartolomeo Rastrelli started in 1736.
Rundāle Palace Museum is one of the two major baroque palaces built for the Dukes of Courland.
The palace was dealt a serious blow after World War II, when a grain storehouse was set up in the premises in addition to the school. Later, the duke’s dining room was transformed into the school’s gymnasium. A school was located in the palace until 1978.
The final works were carried out in 1770 when a fellow of J. M. Graff placed mirrors in the White Hall.
The palace suffered serious damage in 1919 during the Latvian War of Independence.
In 1963, Rundāle Palace became a branch of the Bauska local history museum. In 1965 and also in 1971, the Supreme Soviet of Latvian SSR decided to restore Rundāle Palace. In 1972, Rundāle Palace Museum was established.
Total restoration costs from 1972 until 2014 were estimated to be 8,420,495 euros.
A “green amphitheatre” has been set up in one of the bosquets, following Rastrelli’s original design and the still remaining relief shapes.
The name of Rundāle comes from the German place-name Ruhenthal (Valley of Peace). The Rundāle Palace built during the 16th century was located on the northern side of the pond.