Palaces, manors and town halls in Sweden

Axel Oxenstierna Palace

Axel Oxenstierna palace in the Old Town of Stockholm was designed by architect Jean de la Vallée to Chancellor Axel Oxenstierna and the construction started in 1653. The palace became the headquarters for the 1668-1680 Swedish Central Bank and after a series of state institutional policy. The palace is uniquely conserved in particular to the exterior. There are state historic building since 1935 and is one of the Swedis ...
Founded: 1653 | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Tessin Palace

Tessin Palace is a baroque town house located in Gamla Stan, the old town in central Stockholm. The mansion was constructed between 1694 and 1700 by architect Nicodemus Tessin the Younger. The building was inherited by Tessin"s son Carl Gustaf Tessin who had to sell it in 1750 for financial reasons. The palace later became property of the crown and has been used as residence for the Over Governor and later Governor o ...
Founded: 1694-1700 | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Royal Palace

The Stockholm Palace (Kungliga Slottet) is the official residence and major royal palace of the Swedish monarch. The offices of the monarch and the other members of the Swedish Royal Family as well as the offices of the Royal Court of Sweden are located there. The palace is used for representative purposes by the King whilst performing his duties as the head of state. The first building on this site was a fortress with a ...
Founded: 17th - 18th century | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Bonde Palace

Bonde Palace (Bondeska palatset) is located between the House of Knights (Riddarhuset) and the Chancellery House (Kanslihuset). It is, arguably, the most prominent monument of the era of the Swedish Empire (1611–1718), originally design by Nicodemus Tessin the Elder and Jean De la Vallée in 1662-1667 as the private residence of the Lord High Treasurer Gustaf Bonde (1620–1667) it still bears his name, wh ...
Founded: 1662-1667 | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Arvfursten Palace

Arvfursten Palace (Arvfurstens palats) is located at Gustav Adolfs Torg in central Stockholm. Designed by Erik Palmstedt, the palace was originally the private residence of Princess Sophia Albertina. It was built 1783-1794 and declared a historical monument in 1935 and subsequently restored by Ivar Tengbom in 1948-52. Since 1906 the palace has served as the seat of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. The palace is facing t ...
Founded: 1783-1794 | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

House of Nobility

The House of Nobility (Riddarhuset, “the House of Knights”) was built in 1641-1672 as a chamber of Estates of the Realm, and as such, a Swedish equivalent to the British House of Lords. After 1866, when the Riksdag of the Estates was replaced by the new parliament, the Swedish House of Nobility served as a quasi-official representation of the Swedish nobility, regulated by the Swedish government. Since 2003, i ...
Founded: 1641-1672 | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Hallwyl Palace

The Hallwyl Palace was built 1893-1898 to the design of Isak Gustaf Clason for Count Walther von Hallwyl and his wife Wilhelmina. It was created to accommodate the office of the count and the extensive art collection of the countess. While the exterior of the building and the court is historical in style — borrowing architectonic elements from medieval prototypes and Renaissance Venice — it was technically utterly mod ...
Founded: 1893-1898 | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Wrangel Palace

Wrangel Palace is a townhouse mansion on Riddarholmen islet in the old town of Stockholm. The southern tower used to be part of Gustav Vasa"s defence fortifications from the 1530s. Around 1630, the mansion was turned into a palace for Lars Sparre. From 1652 to 1670, the palace was rebuilt and expanded by architect Nicodemus Tessin the Elder for Count Carl Gustaf Wrangel. After a fire in 1693, the palace was rebuilt a ...
Founded: 1652-1670 | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Kungshuset

Kungshuset, the "King's House", was built by the Danish king Frederick II between 1578–1584 and originally intended as the residence for the bishop of Lund. After the secession of the Scanian lands to Sweden at the Treaty of Roskilde 1658, and the foundation of Lund University in 1666 to enhance the Swedification of the Danish provinces, the house was incorporated to serve as the university's main building and libra ...
Founded: 1578-1584 | Location: Lund, Sweden

Kronhuset

The old Kronhuset (the Crown House) behind the Gustav Adolf Square is one of the oldest buildings in Gothenburg. It was built in 1642-1654 as a storehouse for military uniforms and other military equipment. Now it is a living craft center in historic buildings. Around Kronhuset is Kronhusbodarna (the Crown House Sheds).The west wing served as carriage storage and warehouse, and was built around 1750 after the previous wo ...
Founded: 1642-1654 | Location: Gothenburg, Sweden

Drottningholm Palace

The Drottningholm Palace is the private residence of the Swedish royal family. It was originally built in the late 16th century. It served as a residence of the Swedish royal court for most of the 18th century. Apart from being the private residence of the Swedish royal family, the palace is a popular tourist attraction. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, mainly because of its Theatre (an opera house located at the ...
Founded: 1662 | Location: Ekerö, Sweden

Uppsala University

The University Main Building was built in the 1880s. Parliament had allocated funding, and King Oscar II laid the cornerstone in pouring rain on a spring day in 1879. The site was formerly occupied by a large academic riding building, which was torn down for the new edifice. On May 17, 1887 the building was inaugurated at a festive ceremony. The architect was Herman Teodor Holmgren. What he created was a grand and statel ...
Founded: 1880's | Location: Uppsala, Sweden

Umeå City Hall

Umeå City Hall (Umeå rådhus) was built after the great fire, which damaged the city in 1888. It was completed in 1890. The architect was Fredrik Olaus Lindström and the hall is inspired by Dutch Renaissance.
Founded: 1890 | Location: Umeå, Sweden

Waldemarsudde Palace

Prins Eugens Waldemarsudde is a museum located on Djurgården in central Stockholm. It was the former home of the Swedish Prince Eugen, who discovered the place in 1892, when he rented a house there for a few days. Seven years later he bought the premises and had a new house designed by the architect Ferdinand Boberg, who also designed Rosenbad (the Prime Minister"s Office and the Government Chancellery), and erecte ...
Founded: 1903 | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Arboga Town Hall

The town hall was originally built as a church in the 15th Century. During the reformation in the 16th Century Gustav Vasa gave the church to the people of Arboga and its new purpose was to be the town hall. However the king used the house as his own private residence instead. His daughter, Cecilia, Countess of Arboga, also lived here in 1570. From 1640 to the present day Arboga’s town council has had offices here. The ...
Founded: 1752-59 | Location: Arboga, Sweden

Carolina Rediviva

Carolina Rediviva is the main building of the Uppsala University Library in Uppsala, Sweden. The building was begun in 1820 and completed in 1841. The original architect was Carl Fredrik Sundvall. Later additions to the building have been designed by Axel Johan Anderberg and Peter Celsing. The name, literally "Carolina Revived", was given in remembrance of the old Academia Carolina building, which had functioned as univer ...
Founded: 1820-1841 | Location: Uppsala, Sweden

Sofiero Castle

Sofiero Castle was one of the Swedish royal family's country mansions. It was originally a Scanian farm called Skabelycke, bought in 1864 by Crown Prince Oscar of Sweden and his wife Sophia of Nassau. The first one-story palace was completed in 1865. It was expanded to its current size between 1874 and 1876, after crown prince Oscar had been crowned king Oscar II of Sweden and Norway. In 1905, Oscar II's grandchild Princ ...
Founded: 1865 | Location: Helsingborg, Sweden

Lidköping City Hall

Lidköping magnificent wooden city hall (rådhuset) was originally a originally a hunting lodge in the island of Kållandsö. It was donated to the Lidköping city by Magnus Gabriel de la Gardie in 1671. The upper floors were damaged by fire in 1950, but they are restored. Today city hall is the landmark and icon of Lidköping.
Founded: 17th century | Location: Lidköping, Sweden

Gustav III's Pavilion

Gustav III's Pavilion is a royal pavilion at the Haga Park. As a highlight in Swedish art history, the Pavilion is a fine example of the European neoclassicism of the late 18th century in Northern Europe. The pavilion was built in 1787 by the architect Olof Tempelman with detailed instructions from King Gustav III who was highly personally involved in the project, producing some basic designs himself and suggesting change ...
Founded: 1787 | Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Tjolöholm Castle

Tjolöholm Castle is a country house built 1898-1904. It is located on a peninsula in the Kungsbacka Fjord on the Kattegat coast. Tjoloholm Castle was designed in the Arts and Crafts style by architect Lars Israel Wahlmann. In 2010, Danish film director Lars Von Trier shot the exterior scenes of the film Melancholia at the castle.
Founded: 1898-1904 | Location: Fjärås, Sweden

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Charlottenburg Palace

Charlottenburg Palace is the largest palace in Berlin and the only surviving royal residence in the city dating back to the time of the Hohenzollern family. The original palace was commissioned by Sophie Charlotte, the wife of Friedrich III, Elector of Brandenburg in what was then the village of Lietzow. Originally named Lietzenburg, the palace was designed by Johann Arnold Nering in baroque style. The inauguration of the palace was celebrated on 11 July 1699, Frederick's 42nd birthday.

Friedrich crowned himself as King Friedrich I in Prussia in 1701 (Friedrich II, known as Frederick the Great, would later achieve the title King of Prussia). Two years previously, he had appointed Johann Friedrich von Eosander (also known as Eosander von Göthe) as the royal architect and sent him to study architectural developments in Italy and France, particularly the Palace of Versailles. On his return in 1702, Eosander began to extend the palace, starting with two side wings to enclose a large courtyard, and the main palace was extended on both sides. Sophie Charlotte died in 1705 and Friedrich named the palace and its estate Charlottenburg in her memory. In the following years, the Orangery was built on the west of the palace and the central area was extended with a large domed tower and a larger vestibule. On top of the dome is a wind vane in the form of a gilded statue representing Fortune designed by Andreas Heidt. The Orangery was originally used to overwinter rare plants. During the summer months, when over 500 orange, citrus and sour orange trees decorated the baroque garden, the Orangery regularly was the gorgeous scene of courtly festivities.

Inside the palace, was a room described as 'the eighth wonder of the world', the Amber Room, a room with its walls surfaced in decorative amber. It was designed by Andreas Schlüter and its construction by the Danish amber craftsman Gottfried Wolfram started in 1701. Friedrich Wilhelm I gave the Amber Room to Tsar Peter the Great as a present in 1716.

When Friedrich I died in 1713, he was succeeded by his son, Friedrich Wilhelm I whose building plans were less ambitious, although he did ensure that the building was properly maintained. Building was resumed after his son Friedrich II (Frederick the Great) came to the throne in 1740. During that year, stables for his personal guard regiment were completed to the south of the Orangery wing and work was started on the east wing. The building of the new wing was supervised by Georg Wenzeslaus von Knobelsdorff, the Superintendent of all the Royal Palaces, who largely followed Eosander's design. The decoration of the exterior was relatively simple but the interior furnishings were lavish. The ground floor was intended for Frederick's wife Elisabeth Christine, who, preferring Schönhausen Palace, was only an occasional visitor. The decoration of the upper floor, which included the White Hall, the Banqueting Hall, the Throne Room and the Golden Gallery, was lavish and was designed mainly by Johann August Nahl. In 1747, a second apartment for the king was prepared in the distant eastern part of the wing. During this time, Sanssouci was being built at Potsdam and once this was completed Frederick was only an occasional visitor to Charlottenburg.

In 1786, Frederick was succeeded by his nephew Friedrich Wilhelm II who transformed five rooms on the ground floor of the east wing into his summer quarters and part of the upper floor into Winter Chambers, although he did not live long enough to use them. His son, Friedrich Wilhelm III came to the throne in 1797 and reigned with his wife, Queen Luise for 43 years. They spent much of this time living in the east wing of Charlottenburg. Their eldest son, Friedrich Wilhelm IV, who reigned from 1840 to 1861, lived in the upper storey of the central palace building. After Friedrich Wilhelm IV died, the only other royal resident of the palace was Friedrich III who reigned for 99 days in 1888.

The palace was badly damaged in 1943 during the Second World War. In 1951, the war-damaged Stadtschloss in East Berlin was demolished and, as the damage to Charlottenburg was at least as serious, it was feared that it would also be demolished. However, following the efforts of Margarete Kühn, the Director of the State Palaces and Gardens, it was rebuilt to its former condition, with gigantic modern ceiling paintings by Hann Trier.

The garden was designed in 1697 in baroque style by Simeon Godeau who had been influenced by André Le Nôtre, designer of the gardens at Versailles. Godeau's design consisted of geometric patterns, with avenues and moats, which separated the garden from its natural surroundings. Beyond the formal gardens was the Carp Pond. Towards the end of the 18th century, a less formal, more natural-looking garden design became fashionable. In 1787 the Royal Gardener Georg Steiner redesigned the garden in the English landscape style for Friedrich Wilhelm II, the work being directed by Peter Joseph Lenné. After the Second World War, the centre of the garden was restored to its previous baroque style.