Palaces, manors and town halls in Netherlands

Royal Palace of Amsterdam

The Royal Palace is one of three palaces in the Netherlands which are at the disposal of the monarch by Act of Parliament. The palace was built as the Town Hall of the City of Amsterdam and was opened as such on 29 July 1655 by Cornelis de Graeff, the political and social leader of Amsterdam. It is now called as the royal palace and used by the monarch for entertaining and official functions during state visits and other ...
Founded: 1655 | Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Binnenhof

The Binnenhof is a complex of buildings in the city centre of The Hague, next to the Hofvijver lake. It houses the meeting place of both houses of the States General of the Netherlands, as well as the Ministry of General Affairs and the office of the Prime Minister of the Netherlands. Little is known about the origin of the Binnenhof. Presumably, the grounds next to the Hofvijver lake, and the small homestead on it, were ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Hague, Netherlands

Delft City Hall

The City Hall in Delft is a Renaissance style former seat of the city"s government, and still today the place where residents hold their civic wedding ceremonies. Originally designed by the Dutch architect Hendrick de Keyser, it was heavily changed over the centuries and was restored in the 20th century to its Renaissance appearance. The old city hall burned down n 1618, and since Hendrik de Keyser was working across ...
Founded: 1618 | Location: Delft, Netherlands

Haarlem City Hall

Around 1100 a wooden building was constructed on the location of the current Gravenzaal of the City Hall. Traces of this building were found in 1955. After large fires in 1347 and 1351, William II, Count of Holland donated the remains of the Gravenzaal to the city"s municipality. A new building was built there. The central square building dates from the Middle Ages, but the distinctive façade of the building w ...
Founded: 14th century | Location: Haarlem, Netherlands

Maastricht Town Hall

The Maastricht Town Hall was built in the 17th century by Pieter Post and considered one of the highlights of Dutch Baroque architecture.
Founded: 17th century | Location: Maastricht, Netherlands

Het Loo Palace

Het Loo Palace is symmetrical Dutch Baroque palace was designed by Jacob Roman and Johan van Swieten. It was built between 1684 and 1686 for stadtholder-king William III and Mary II of England. The garden was designed by Claude Desgotz. The building is a rijksmonument and is among the Top 100 Dutch heritage sites. The palace was a residence of the House of Orange-Nassau from the 17th century until the death of Queen Wilh ...
Founded: 1684-1686 | Location: Apeldoorn, Netherlands

Kneuterdijk Palace

Kneuterdijk Palace was once a Royal Palace of the Kings of the Netherlands. Built in 1716 in the Louis XIV style by architect Daniel Marot, it was commissioned by Count Johan Hendrik of Wassenaer-Obdam, member of the House of Wassenaer. The palace served as a residence for King William II of the Netherlands and his wife Queen Anna Paulowna in the first half of the 19th century, when he was still the crown prince. ...
Founded: 1716 | Location: Hague, Netherlands

Noordeinde Palace

The Noordeinde palace originated as a medieval farmhouse, which was converted into a spacious residence by the steward of the States of Holland, Willem van de Goudt in 1533. The original farmhouse's cellars can still be seen in the palace basement. From 1566 to 1591, the palace had a different owner. After that it was leased, and in 1595, purchased by the States of Holland for Louise de Coligny, the widow of William of O ...
Founded: 1533 | Location: Hague, Netherlands

Peace Palace

The Peace Palace (Vredespaleis) is an administrative building and often called the seat of international law because it houses the International Court of Justice (which is the principal judicial body of the United Nations), the Permanent Court of Arbitration, the Hague Academy of International Law, and the extensive Peace Palace Library. In addition to hosting these institutions, the Palace is also a regular venue for spe ...
Founded: 1913 | Location: Hague, Netherlands

Markiezenhof

The Marquises Palace (Het Markiezenhof) is one of the most beautiful examples of a late Gothic city palace to be found anywhere in Western Europe. It was built in the late 15th century by the famous Flemish master builders Anthonie and Rombout Keldermans as the residential palace of the Lords and Marquises of Bergen op Zoom.
Founded: 1485 | Location: Bergen op Zoom, Netherlands

Soestdijk Palace

Soestdijk is a former palace of the Dutch Royal Family. It consists of a central block and two wings. It was the home for over six decades of Queen Juliana and her husband, Prince Bernhard until their deaths in 2004. In the middle of the seventeenth century the Country house on the Zoestdijk was built for Cornelis de Graeff. After the rampjaar his son Jacob de Graeff sold it to Stadhouder William III. Then ...
Founded: 1674 | Location: Baarn, Netherlands

Nienoord

Nienoord borg (fortified manor) was built in the early 1500s. It was destroyed by fire in 1846 and the new manor was built in 1884 in the Art Nouveau and Neo-Classicism styles. Today there is a family park.
Founded: 1884 | Location: Leek, Netherlands

Crackstate

Crackstate is a residential manor palace built in 1648 by John Sytzes Crack. It is surrounded by a moat. Later it has been functioned as a prison and courthouse. During the World War II Crackstate was used for torturing and executing people. Today it is a city hall of Heerenveen.
Founded: 1648 | Location: Heerenveen, Netherlands

Franeker City Hall

Franeker City Hall dates from 1591–1594 and was built in Frysian renaissance style. Above the main entrance the coat of arms of Friesland is shown, and along the leadlights on the first floor, another 27 coats of arms are placed.
Founded: 1591-1594 | Location: Franeker, Netherlands

Huis Doorn

Huis Doorn is a manor house and national museum displaying the early 20th-century interior from the time when former German Emperor Wilhelm II lived in the house. The first house was built in the 9th century, but it was destroyed and rebuilt in the 14th century. It was again rebuilt in the late 18th century in a conservative manner and, in the mid-19th century, a surrounding park was laid out as an English landscape garde ...
Founded: 19th century | Location: Doorn, Netherlands

Oenemastate

Oenemastate was built in 1650 and restored in 1876. In 1934 it became a city hall of Heerenveen and today it is a café.
Founded: 1640 | Location: Heerenveen, Netherlands

Hackfort Manor

Hackfort Manor was originally a keep that was expanded into a castle in the 13th century. It was destroyed by Spanish troops in 1586 and rebuilt in 1600. It is one of the best preserved fortified stately homes in the province of Gelderland. The most famous descendant of the Van Hackfort line was Berent (1475-1557). In 1502, he entered the service of the Duke of Guelders and even became commander and deputy to the duke. H ...
Founded: 1600 | Location: Vorden, Netherlands

Villa Welgelegen

Villa Welgelegen was built by Henry Hope of the famous family banking company Hope & Co. of Amsterdam, from 1785 to 1789 as a summer home to replace the already quite impressive structure that he purchased there in 1769. It is an example of neoclassical architecture, unusual for its style in the Netherlands. Henry Hope was so influential that he persuaded the Haarlem local government to redesign the public park Frede ...
Founded: 1785-1789 | Location: Haarlem, Netherlands

Verhildersum

The Verhildersum borg dates from the 14th century. It was destroyed in both 1400 and 1514 by the inhabitants of the city Groningen. However, in between these two battles no mention of the borg is made in official records. In a document mention is made of the reconstruction of the borg after 1514 for the sum of 1200 gold pieces, excluding some exterior buildings. After the death of the inhabitant Aepke Onsta in 1564, Ecke ...
Founded: 17th century | Location: Leens, Netherlands

Beesde Castle

The Beesde Castle was first mentioned in 1395. Today it consists of two parts: a 14th century tower and 17th century manor called Cammingha house.
Founded: 1395 | Location: Bunnik, Netherlands

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Czocha Castle

Czocha Castle is located on the Lake Leśnia, what is now the Polish part of Upper Lusatia. Czocha castle was built on gneiss rock, and its oldest part is the keep, to which housing structures were later added.

Czocha Castle began as a stronghold, on the Czech-Lusatian border. Its construction was ordered by Wenceslaus I of Bohemia, in the middle of the 13th century (1241–1247). In 1253 castle was handed over to Konrad von Wallhausen, Bishop of Meissen. In 1319 the complex became part of the dukedom of Henry I of Jawor, and after his death, it was taken over by another Silesian prince, Bolko II the Small, and his wife Agnieszka. Origin of the stone castle dates back to 1329.

In the mid-14th century, Czocha Castle was annexed by Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia. Then, between 1389 and 1453, it belonged to the noble families of von Dohn and von Kluks. Reinforced, the complex was besieged by the Hussites in the early 15th century, who captured it in 1427, and remained in the castle for unknown time (see Hussite Wars). In 1453, the castle was purchased by the family of von Nostitz, who owned it for 250 years, making several changes through remodelling projects in 1525 and 1611. Czocha's walls were strengthened and reinforced, which thwarted a Swedish siege of the complex during the Thirty Years War. In 1703, the castle was purchased by Jan Hartwig von Uechtritz, influential courtier of Augustus II the Strong. On August 17, 1793, the whole complex burned in a fire.

In 1909, Czocha was bought by a cigar manufacturer from Dresden, Ernst Gutschow, who ordered major remodelling, carried out by Berlin architect Bodo Ebhardt, based on a 1703 painting of the castle. Gutschow, who was close to the Russian Imperial Court and hosted several White emigres in Czocha, lived in the castle until March 1945. Upon leaving, he packed up the most valuable possessions and moved them out.

After World War II, the castle was ransacked several times, both by soldiers of the Red Army, and Polish thieves, who came to the so-called Recovered Territories from central and eastern part of the country. Pieces of furniture and other goods were stolen, and in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the castle was home to refugees from Greece. In 1952, Czocha was taken over by the Polish Army. Used as a military vacation resort, it was erased from official maps. The castle has been open to the public since September 1996 as a hotel and conference centre. The complex was featured in several movies and television series. Recently, the castle has been used as the setting of the College of Wizardry, a live action role-playing game (LARP) that takes place in their own universe and can be compared to Harry Potter.