Amalienborg is the winter home of the Danish royal family. It consists of four identical classicizing palace façades with rococo interiors around an octagonal courtyard; in the centre of the square is a monumental equestrian statue of Amalienborg's founder, King Frederick V.

Amalienborg was originally built for four noble families; however, when Christiansborg Palace burnt down on 26 February 1794, the royal family bought the palaces and moved in. Over the years various kings and their families have resided in the four different palaces. Amalienborg is the centrepiece of Frederiksstaden, a district that was built by King Frederick V to commemorate in 1748 the tercentenary of the Oldenburg family's ascent to the throne of Denmark, and in 1749 the tercentenary of the coronation of Christian I of Denmark. This development is generally thought to have been the brainchild of DanishAmbassador Plenipotentiary in Paris, Johann Hartwig Ernst Bernstorff. Heading the project was Lord High Steward Adam Gottlob Moltke, one of the most powerful and influential men in the land, with Nicolai Eigtved as royal architect and supervisor.

According to Eigtved’s master plans for Frederikstad and the Amalienborg Palaces, the four palaces surrounding the plaza were conceived of as town mansions for the families of chosen nobility. They were identical from the outside, but different on the inside. The building site for each palace was donated free of charge to the chosen aristocrat to build on, and they were further exempted from taxes and duties. The only conditions were that the palaces should comply exactly to the Frederikstad architectural specifications, and that they should be built within a specified time framework.

Building of the palaces on the western side of the square started in 1750. When Eigtved died in 1754 the two western palaces had been completed. The work on the other palaces was continued by Eigtved's colleague and rival, Lauritz de Thurah strictly according to Eigtved’s plans. The palaces were completed in 1760.

The four palaces are: Christian VII's Palace, (originally known as Moltke's Palace), Christian VIII's Palace (Levetzau's Palace), Frederick VIII's Palace (Brockdorff's Palace) and Christian IX's Palace (Schack's Palace).

Currently, only the palaces of Christian VII and Christian VIII are open to the public.

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Details

Founded: 1750-1760
Category: Palaces, manors and town halls in Denmark
Historical period: Absolutism (Denmark)

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User Reviews

Jamie Carrahar (3 years ago)
A great place to watch the tradition of changing the guard at the Danish Royal Court. Very similar in tone to Buckingham Palace, with a much more family feel to the affair. Palace Guards are very well turned out and are impressive, for national servicemen. Great museums nearby too. Well worth a visit.
Arvind Yerram (3 years ago)
There are 2 ways of looking at this palace – we can either call it a palace which allows crowd to pass by or a square which has identical buildings on 4 sides. In the center of this palace is a big statue of a member of the royal family and is the spot of changing of royal guards’ ceremony. On one side we have the beautiful marble church and on the other we have a river/canal. There is an untold symmetry about this place which leaves us with a unique feeling. If you are a museum lover, you can go in and spend few hours watching the artifacts or just spend some time in the center, watch guard changing ceremony and leave.
Lizel Potgieter (3 years ago)
I thoroughly enjoyed my visit here. The palace is maintained well, the location is open, the soldiers are a main attraction, and the statues are lovely. It's close to the Baltic Sea, so the whole area is really lovely. If you're in Copenhagen, you should go here.
Nik Kontrimas (3 years ago)
The Queen of Denmark's official residence in Copenhagen. The square in the middle of the palace is nice to go for a stroll and you can even watch the changing of the guard every day around 12 noon. If you get there early, you'll be able to see the new guards marching in.
Andy Price (3 years ago)
What a lovely place to go and visit. Full of great Danish history and also a chance to see the crown jewels up close. Entry fee was really reasonable and my 10 year old son was free. They have a few guards parading around. They offer free WiFi and if you connect to it and type in what it tells you to do in your browser then you can get a free tour guide on your mobile phone. This is a brilliant idea and made it so much easier to understand what each item and room were all about. Make sure you start the tour in the correct order as we saw on person being told that his ticket wouldn't let him in the crown jewel part until he looked around the main castle. There are loads of historic items on display to see here and my history buff son loved it. After taking the tour we used the cafe there . It's quite small but again expensive, especially for drinks. . We all had a cheese and ham toasted sandwich which was very tasty. We stopped there about 2 hours which was enough to explore castle and have lunch. .
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