Belvedere on the Pfingstberg

The Belvedere on the Pfingstberg (German: Belvedere auf dem Pfingstberg) is a large structure north of the New Garden in Potsdam, Germany, at the summit of Pfingstberg hill. It was commissioned by King Friedrich Wilhelm IV of Prussia and built between 1847 and 1863 as a viewing platform.

The Belvedere forms part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Palaces and Parks of Potsdam and Berlin, inscribed in 1999.

History

It was commissioned by King Friedrich Wilhelm IV of Prussia and as completed is only part of a substantially more extensive project for the hilltop site. The Belvedere was built, as its name suggests, as a viewing platform for visitors and contains only two modest scale rooms for entertainment, one in each upper tower. The mural decoration of these (Roman-Etruscan and Moorish, respectively) is mostly now lost.

Architecturally eclectic, the two towers are modelled on Italian Renaissance architecture whilst the wings are Roman in style and some of the detailed decoration is Greek-inspired. It was constructed between 1847 and 1863 with an interruption from 1852 to 1860.

Based on sketches from the King, the architects, Ludwig Persius, Friedrich August Stüler and Ludwig Ferdinand Hesse [de], drew detailed plans. The landscape architect Peter Joseph Lenné was responsible for the design of the grounds which are planted in the manner of the English landscape garden, with serpentine paths and dense copses of hardwood trees. These now obstruct views of the Belvedere from the park and almost all points in Potsdam, but are apparently as designed by Lenné.

The Belvedere fell into disrepair during World War II and was left abandoned in the period of the German Democratic Republic. It was repaired between 1988 and 2005 by an association formed by a group of local residents. Today, the Belvedere is open to visitors and is still managed by the Förderverein Pfingstberg e.V. who won major financial backing for the restoration. Major contributors included the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung and Werner Otto.

Description

The twin prospect towers from which the view over Potsdam is achieved rise above a very high podium. This is in the form of a three-sided courtyard with central reflecting pool. The three sides of the courtyard are themselves each capped with viewing terraces under colonnades - two Corinthian and one with astylar round arches.

Visitors ascend by many steps both outside and inside, with the final ascent being made via a narrow iron spiral staircase. Because of the dense tree planting of the park the view can only be achieved from the upper level.

Today

Occasional concerts are held on a stage in the reflecting pool of the courtyard and the two Belvedere rooms are available as a marriage venue.

External links

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Nacho Sierra
29 September 2012
Just plan at least one day to visit Potsdam. This little castle is one of the highlights there. Enjoy.
Sebastian Tappert
17 March 2015
Kostet Eintritt, lohnt sich aber: tolle Aussicht auf Potsdam und in die Region sowie sehr informative und technisch innovative Dauerausstellung über die Geschichte des Belvederes im Erdgeschoss.
Tobias Moebert
12 June 2015
Von hier aus hat man einen wunderbaren Ausblick über ganz Potsdam (Eintritt 4 € für Erwachsene).
Sarah
19 January 2015
Eine zweisprachige und multimediale Dauerausstellung zur Geschichte des Belvedere ist vorhanden. Ab dem Frühjahr 2015 wird es auch Audioguides geben!
Olga ????????
25 July 2020
Отсюда открывается потрясающий вид на Потсдам и Ваннзее.
Sven Sch.
5 April 2014
Eine Super Aussicht über Potsdam und Umgebung.
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Belvedere Castle on the Pfingstberg, Pfingstberg, Neuer Garten, 14469 Potsdam, Germany Get directions
Mon-Sun 10:00 AM–6:00 PM

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