The Palace Museum in the New Palace

The New Palace is home to the Pillnitz Palace Museum. It presents the Domed Hall, the Royal Kitchen and the Catholic Chapel, giving testimony to the history of Pillnitz Castle & Park and life at court.

Domed Hall (ballroom and dining hall)

The Domed Hall of Pillnitz Castle is the only domed Classicist building in Dresden.

The New Palace was erected on the site of the Renaissance Castle that had burnt down in 1818. senior state master builder Christian Friedrich Schuricht (1753–1832) had been commissioned with its construction. He was deemed to have the required sense of shape for the overall character of the castle estate. The Grand Dining Hall in the New Palace was inaugurated in 1823.

The Hall with its wide access to the pleasure garden is of representative character. Six free-standing Corinthian columns on each side of the square room bear the coffered suspended dome with its open lantern. Frescoes by Carl Christian Vogel (Vogel von Vogelstein), with allegories and representatives of the arts, decorate the hall. In his set of depictions, he was influenced by the views he had gathered of the Nazarene movement during his stay in Rome between 1813 and 1820. Vogel also painted the Catholic Chapel in the New Palace with religious motifs in that style. Examinations in 1986 and 1995 revealed that the Domed Hall requires extensive restoration.

Royal Kitchen

The old Renaissance Palace burnt down in 1818. The Royal Kitchen was erected in the same place until 1823 as a part of the New Palace which was completed in 1830. The Royal Kitchen did not only have to serve the royal family, but also the court and its servants (at least 70 people every day). The sequence of rooms of the new Royal Kitchen and its technological structure was largely the same as the one in the old palace: »Tasting Side«, »Frying Side«, »Baking Side«, »Stuffing Chamber«, »Meat Vault«, »Pantry«, »Ice Pit« and »Kitchen Scribes’ Office«. In each of the kitchen areas, there was a responsible »Master Cook«, »Pastry Chef« and »Frying Cook«, assisted by further staff. There were 27 servants working in the kitchen. Their organization was within the responsibility of the master chef and his scribes’ office. Especially on occasion of festivities, it was indispensable for the kitchen to operate smoothly.

Much of the kitchen inventory had been lost in the fire of the old Renaissance castle. The Royal Kitchen was newly equipped. After the abdication of the royals in 1918, the kitchen was used for other purposes. At the beginning of its reconstruction in 2000, the room structure and almost all of the inventory had been devastated or gone missing. The reconstruction of the Royal Kitchen was performed with the help of written sources, pictures (including watercolors by Princess Mathilde) as well as architectural-archaeological traces. So the furniture and parts of the cooking appliances, for example, are historically true replicas, and pieces of equipment are purchases of varied origin. The copper kitchenware on display originates from the Saxon court and was purchased, to a large extent, in 2001 at an auction at Sotheby’s in Amsterdam.

The Royal Kitchen was inaugurated in 2003. 

Catholic Chapel

With the building of the New Palace (1818-1830), performed by senior state master builder Christian Friedrich Schuricht, the Pillnitz Castle estate was closed off to the east. In the north wing of the Palace, a new single-nave Catholic court chapel was installed. The Chapel Wing was erected between 1823 and 1829. Despite its plain appearance, this court chapel and its richly decorated interior and murals by Carl Christian Vogel von Vogelstein (1788–1868) demonstrate the royal family’s religiousness and representative claim. Still before the the end of 1826, the painter Carl Christian Vogel von Vogelstein had begun, jointly with students of the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts, to paint the chapel al fresco with a Mariological cycle. Three years later, Vogel completed his work on 16 December 1829. On 16 June 1830, the chapel was consecrated by Bishop Mauermann dedicating it to Holy Trinity.

The chapel presents itself reconstructed and is being used by the Catholic Church.


Pillnitz Palace and Park

August-Böckstiegel-Straße 2 | 01326 Dresden

Property of State Palaces, Castles and Gardens of Saxony, non profit

+49 (0) 351 2613-260