Weissenstein Palace

Pommersfelden, Germany

Schloss Weißenstein is palatial residence in Pommersfelden, considered a masterwork of Baroque art. In 1710, Lothar Franz von Schönborn, Prince-Bishop of Bamberg and Archbishop of Mainz, inherited the estate after the local family, the Truchsesse of Pommersfelden had died out. He ordered the construction of a palace as a private summer residence, paid for from his personal wealth. A team or architects including Johann Dientzenhofer, who had previously built the Fulda Cathedral, and Johann Lukas von Hildebrandt, the court architect of the Austrian Emperor Karl VI. The Marstall and park were designed by Schönborn's own court architect, Maximilian von Welsch.

The castle was built between 1711 and 1719 from local sandstone materials. The interior art was finished in 1723. After the death of Lothar Franz in 1729, the palace passed to his nephew Friedrich Karl von Schönborn who had the park expanded. A plan by Balthasar Neumann was however, only partially realized. In the early 19th century, the park was transformed from its original Baroque form into an English landscape garden.

During the Seven Years' War the palace was attacked and damaged by Prussian troops. Minor restoration work was done in the late 19th century. More recently, preservation work has been done in 1975 to 2003.

Today Weißenstein remains the property of the Schönborn family. It is considered a Baroque masterwork and the combination of exterior and well-preserved interiors gives it European importance. The palace and its park are open to the public.

The palace contains the largest private Baroque art collection in Germany, containing over 600 pictures. Baroque and Renaissance artists represented include Peter Paul Rubens, Albrecht Dürer, Titian, Rembrandt and Anthony van Dyck.



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Founded: 1711-1719
Category: Palaces, manors and town halls in Germany
Historical period: Thirty Years War & Rise of Prussia (Germany)


4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Emeelea Sani (13 months ago)
The guide was rushed through and in german but a definite visit. Depictions of asia on the ceilings was very intresting but my obvious favourite was the grotto room. You could smell the sea in the room.
Anna Graetz (15 months ago)
Beautiful ornate architecture. Creative and beautiful summer rooms. The grounds are well kept. Tours are easy to follow and readily available.
jenny stamatopoulou (15 months ago)
You can see the inside of the palace with a tour guide every hour.beautiful place!
Marcel Roelse (16 months ago)
Very well maintained. Beautiful inside. Lots of paintings. Take a good look in the cool room with seashells.
Marie Lui (2 years ago)
In the middle of nowhere lies the beautiful and magical castle of Lothar Franz von Schönbron. The building houses stunning art work and impressive architecture and the castle grounds give a pompous impression. It comes to no suprise that Hollywood has knocked on the doors of the castle before. The château park seems unkempt and ragged at first glance until you come across a sign explaining that the grounds have been utilized by fallow deer. Some of them showed up on our visit and enchanted us fairly quickly. The only critique of Schloss Weißenstein would be the prices as you pay 7 Euro as a student to enter the building and another Euro to gain access to the park. Now, this may not seem like much, yet, the accessible area won't take more than an hour to explore in depth and since the park is left to nature, I personally am not aware what the money is being used for. To summarize, a visit to the castle is worth your while for one visit – more than that does not seem necessary unless you take a liking to the café on-site or want to celebrate a special event on the castle grounds.
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