The Amalienburg is an elaborate hunting lodge in the grounds of Nymphenburg Palace. It was constructed in 1734-1739 by François de Cuvilliés, in Rococo style, for the later Holy Roman Emperor Charles VII and his wife, Maria Amalia of Austria.
Most of the ground floor is given over to the round Hall of Mirrors in the center of the building which mirrored walls reflect the external nature. It was designed by Johann Baptist Zimmermann and Joachim Dietrich (1690–1753). It creates an ethereal atmosphere in the Bavarian national colors of silver and blue.
In the south of the hall, the door leads to the electoral Rest room and the Blue Cabinet, with access to the privy chamber. The Blue Cabinet was the bedroom of the Electress and the pavilion also accommodates a kennel room for the hunting dogs.
North from the Hall of Mirrors is the entrance to the Pheasant room and the Hunting room. The Pheasant Room is bordering the kitchen. The kitchen is decorated with precious tiles from Delft which when being laid were mixed up by workers in the wrong order. The blue and white tiles in a Chinese style show flowers and birds. The Castrol stove (1735) built for the kitchen is a masonry construction with several fireholes covered by perforated iron plates. It is also known as a stew stove and was the first design that completely enclosed the fire.
In the central niche of the eastern facade, is a stucco sculpture by Johann Baptist Zimmermann, representing a scene with the hunting goddess Diana. The presentation introduces the image program in all facilities of the building. The attic was derived from 1737, also manufactured to a design by Zimmermann, with decorative vases, which disappeared at an unknown date. In 1992, they were recreated and designed by Hans Geiger, four adorn the entrance facade, twelve the garden side of the Amalienburg.
A platform with ornate lattice, which is fitted to the building in the center of the roof, served as a raised hide for pheasant hunting: The birds were driven to the Amalienburg from the former pheasant (now menagerie) building. Since the castle could be supplied by the kitchen of Nymphenburg Palace, the Amalienburg lacks private farm buildings in contrast to the two other park pavilions.References:
The Kalozha church of Saints Boris and Gleb is the oldest extant structure in Hrodna. It is the only surviving monument of ancient Black Ruthenian architecture, distinguished from other Orthodox churches by prolific use of polychrome faceted stones of blue, green or red tint which could be arranged to form crosses or other figures on the wall.
The church is a cross-domed building supported by six circular pillars. The outside is articulated with projecting pilasters, which have rounded corners, as does the building itself. The ante-nave contains the choir loft, accessed by a narrow gradatory in the western wall. Two other stairs were discovered in the walls of the side apses; their purpose is not clear. The floor is lined with ceramic tiles forming decorative patterns. The interior was lined with innumerable built-in pitchers, which usually serve in Eastern Orthodox churches as resonators but in this case were scored to produce decorative effects. For this reason, the central nave has never been painted.
The church was built before 1183 and survived intact, depicted in the 1840s by Michał Kulesza, until 1853, when the south wall collapsed, due to its perilous location on the high bank of the Neman. During restoration works, some fragments of 12th-century frescoes were discovered in the apses. Remains of four other churches in the same style, decorated with pitchers and coloured stones instead of frescoes, were discovered in Hrodna and Vaŭkavysk. They all date back to the turn of the 13th century, as do remains of the first stone palace in the Old Hrodna Castle.
In 2004, the church was included in the Tentative List of UNESCO"s World Heritage Sites.