Bruhl Palaces - History and Facts | History Hit

Bruhl Palaces

Bruhl, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany

The Bruhl Palaces are the UNESCO listed 18th century Rococo palace and hunting lodge built for the Archbishop and Elector of Cologne.

Antara Bate

24 Nov 2020

About Bruhl Palaces

The Bruhl Palaces (Schlosser Bruhl) are comprised of the Augustus Palace and the Falkenlust Palace, built in the 18th century for the Archbishop and Elector of Cologne, Clemens August of Bavaria.

Bruhl Palaces history

The structures in the Rhine-Erft district near Cologne date back to Clemens August of the House of Wittelsbach, Archbishop-Elector of Cologne. In 1725 he commissioned a summer house to be built that would serve as his falconry base and as a private retreat.

The two residences are linked by an avenue running through the extensive Palace Park. A range of renowned artists and architects were involved in planning and building palaces, gardens and grounds.

Built atop the ruins of a medieval moated castle and completed in 1768, Augustus Palace is considered a masterpiece of the German Rococo style, the highlight of which is its staircase by Balthasar Neumann. Augustus Palace was Clemens August’s favourite residence. Falkenlust Palace was constructed between 1729-1737 and served as the hunting lodge of Clemens August.

For many years starting in 1949, Augustusburg Palace was used as a venue for official receptions held by Germany’s president and federal government. This is where German presidents have received famous state visitors such as Queen Elizabeth II, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela and even Pope John Paul II.

Bruhl Palaces today

Today, Augustusburg Palace and the Falkenlust hunting lodge are open to the public as a museum. Visitors can choose to take a guided tour around the palaces or explore with an audio guide.

A particularly impressive feature is the magnificent staircase designed by Balthasar Neumann. Every summer a series of classical and Baroque concerts are held here. Germany’s only Haydn festival is also part of the summer programme.

In 1984, the two Brühl palaces, together with their gardens and parks, were included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Getting to Bruhl Palaces

The Bruhl Palaces are convenient to see when visiting Cologne and Bonn on the Rhine River. The site is easily accessible by public transport. To travel by train, the nearest station is Brühl which is five minutes’ walk to Augustusburg Palace. The nearest tram stop is Brühl-Mitte