The Dachau Palace is a former residence of the rulers of Bavaria. The castle was constructed around 1100 as a castle by the cadet branch of the House of Wittelsbach. In 1182, the last Count of Dachau, Konrad III, died without issue and Duke Otto I of Bavaria took possession of it shortly thereafter. The original castle was demolished between 1398 and 1403. In 1467 Sigismund, Duke of Bavaria resigned and then kept only Bavaria-Dachau as his domain until his death in 1501.
William IV of Bavaria and his son Albert V ordered the construction of a Renaissance style four-wing palace with a court garden on the site of the old castle. The new building was designed by Heinrich Schöttl; construction began in 1546 and was completed in 1577. It later became the favoured residence of the rulers of Bavaria. Also the history of Schleissheim Palace started with a renaissance country house (1598) and hermitage founded by William V close to Dachau Palace.
In 1715, Maximilian II Emanuel commissioned a redesign in Baroque style by Joseph Effner. Only the south-west wing is extant; King Maximilian I ordered the other 3 wings to be demolished in the early 19th century. They had suffered extensive damage at the hands of Napoleonic troops.
The Palace is managed by the Bavarian Administration of State-owned Palaces, an administrative department of the Free State of Bavaria. It is open to visitors and the Banqueting Hall can be booked for special events. It is also used as a venue for classical concerts.
The main sight of the palace is the banqueting hall with its coffered Renaissance ceiling, designed and created between 1564 and 1566 by Hans Wisreutter, which was restored to the palace in 1977. The view from the top of the Schlossberg overlooks Munich and extends to the Bavarian Alps.
The court garden was created from the 1572 in order to enjoy the remarkable view from the Schlossberg, several pavilions were built, of which three are still preserved. Comparable with the vineyard and famous Sanssouci Palace, were the 'hanging gardens' of the Schlossberg: terraces with precious espalier fruits. For the upper part of the parterres a still existing balcony of lime trees was created. Joseph Effner re-designed together with his brother Johann Christoph Effner also the garden in Baroque style in 1717. As a representative of an enlightened absolutism, Elector Max III. Joseph ordered already in 1765 to develop an English landscape garden. Today, the lower part of the garden has been abandoned and is awaiting resurrection.References:
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.