/ / Palace of the Prefecture: photo, description Palais de la Prefecture des Alpes-Maritimes)

Palace of the Prefecture: photo, description Palais de la Prefecture des Alpes-Maritimes)

Palace of the Prefecture of the Maritime Alps, also known as the Palace of the Dukes of Savoy, or kings of Sardinia, - the former residence of the monarchs of Sardinia, located in Old nice. Façade, its imposing building faces the pedestrian street, Cours Saleya, to ignore it is simply impossible.

The exact date of the start of construction of the Palace is not defined. We only know that after the siege of the city by the troops of Francis I. and Suleiman the Magnificent in 1543, the Duke Emmanuel Philibert, known Geleznodorogny decided to build next to the local Dominican monastery of his residence. Worked on a project for the Italian architect and military engineer Domenico Ponselle. To 1573 was ready seven bedrooms and kitchen, at the same time the gardener Antonio Giordano laid around the garden.

The status of an authentic residence of the monarch, the Palace acquired in the year 1613, when it was settled by the Duke of Savoy Charles Emmanuel I. In the mansion has increased significantly. In the middle of the XVIII century, the rulers of Piedmont-Sardinia bought part of the Dominican monastery, to double the size of the building. In 1792, nice was captured by the troops of revolutionary France under the command of General Anselme. The Palace was plundered and converted into a military hospital, a beautiful garden destroyed.

In 1814, after the fall of Napoleon, returned to Sardinia king Victor Emmanuel I of Savoy decided to restore the residence, raising its rank to the king. Work was carried out by the city architect Jean-Antoine Skopje. In the new Royal apartments, they brought some furniture from the palaces of Turin and Genoa. The first inhabitants of the Royal Palace after the abdication of Victor Emmanuel began in 1826, the brother of the forsaken monarch king Charles Felix of Savoy and his wife Maria Christina.

In 1860, after the annexation of nice by the French, the former Royal residence became the headquarters of the Prefecture of the Maritime Alps. For forty years the Palace was constantly rebuilt, it had become a place for brilliant techniques on the French Riviera. It was here in 1864 the Emperor Napoleon III met with the Russian Emperor Alexander II.

After all the changes from the old Palace of the Dukes of Savoy were only the lobby and the Central staircase. In the West wing now houses a magnificent winter garden. The interior is richly decorated with remarkable frescoes, Corinthian columns, carved wood, gilt. The ceilings are decorated in neo-Baroque style. An important part of the Palace is a gallery of works by artist Jules Cheret, who lived and died in nice.

In 1960, when he fulfilled a hundred years since the annexation of nice by France, the Palace was visited by President Charles de Gaulle - he gave a gala dinner in honor of this event. In 2001 there was signed the Treaty of nice, paving the way for the expansion of the European Union. In 2008 passed the summit Russia-EU to discuss ways of overcoming the global financial crisis. The Palace really has become the center of world-class events. However, its doors are open to tourists.