Yusupov Palace


The Yusupov palace on the Moika river is a place of great interest for both art and history lovers: the firsts will find it to be one  of the most gorgeous palace with great and cozy interiors in St Petersburg, the others will be  curious to see the place where Grigory Rasputin was assassinated.  The Yusupov palace is definitely worth a visit, but one should  be patient– it is a very popular museum and therefore thereу are always lines inside.  You need to pay extra to visit Rasputin exhibition, one has to pay extra for photos too. But the gala-rooms and the mysterious story about Rasputin, who was one of the most controversial persons in Russian history of the 20-th century, really are worthy of attempt.
It won’t be an exaggeration to say that Yusupov family was almost as rich as Russian tsars. Their family owned 40 palaces all over Russia, there were 200 servants in the Yusupov palace on Moika only and their art collection was so overwhelming and important that after the Revolution when the palace was nationalized it was decided that « it was not reasonable to have the second Hermitage in St Petersburg” and the paintings and other  valuables were transferred to the Hermitage. Nevertheless, the restored interiors are truly magnificent …You will see a lot of original pieces of art from the collection of the Yusupov family, great furniture collection, valuable pieces of porcelain, amazing inlaid floors. Besides, the guides will show you where the hiding treasure places were. In the XX-th century when the Bolsheviks entered the palace they started looking for the treasures the Yusupovs had. Some of them were discovered and taken, stolen and never appeared to come back.
 
Besides gala rooms, you can visit the only surviving home theater of  the XIX century in Russia  that was preserved unchanged since that time. The theater in the  Yusopov palace is functioning and it is even possible to visit a performance there. It is really unique – as it is the only theatre in Russia which is inside the palace, and is still functioning.
       The descendants of Yusupov family are now living abroad. There is no restitution in Russia and this palace now belongs to the state “ Ra-ra-raspurin, Russia’s greatest love-machine…” –these famous words written by the BONEY M band are about a famous XX century  Russian monk from Siberia who became well-known for being a passionate preacher , for helping common people and for curing the Russian heir to the throne.
In fact there were never any love affairs between the last Russian empress and Rasputin as the historians say today. But Alexandra  really respected and trusted Rasputin. You know that the only heir to the throne was very ill-he had hemophilia. As the empress said Rasputin even being far away from Alexis could help him stop bleeding.
However there were many people who really hated Rasputin. On the 16-th of December 1916 he was assassinated.
The murder of Rasputin has become something of a legend, some of it perhaps invented, embellished or simply misremembered by the very men who killed him, therefore it has become so difficult to tell the actual course of events. But according to the memories of theу participants, mainly to Felix Yusupov’s book Rasputin was poisoned with cyanide, then he was shot several times and after that his body was thrown into the Neva river.
There were some rumors about Rasputin’s  autopsy which established that the cause of his  death was drowning. But today the historians say it was never proved. So it is just another part of a legend. In fact there probably was no poison or he may not have even tried the poisoned cakes and vine.
                  To learn more about Rasputin one can take a private guide. There will be less lines definitely  or no lines at all as they will tell you the specific time of entering the museum. If you go on your own here are the prices for you:
Prices for foreign visitors: ticket to gala rooms of the palace – 500 rub, Rasputin exhibition – 300 rub. Audioguides and photo permits   - extra costs.
                  However remember, to get there on your own is sometimes more difficult than to the famous Hermitage museum. The Yusupov palace provides with the audioguides but never with foreign language guides.
So if you ant to have one – contact us.

 


 


 

 

 



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