Peter the Great's Summer Palace and the Fontanka Embankment
17 Apr 2015 | From Anastasia of Russia
The oldest palace in St. Petersburg, Peter the Great's Summer Palace in the beautiful Summer Garden is an elegant baroque mansion that, under the auspices of the State Russian Museum, has charming interiors evoking Peter's domestic life. The palace was originally surrounded by water on three sides: The Neva to the north, the Fontanka to the east, and the diminutive Gavanets Creek (now drained) to the south.
The first palace built in Saint Petersburg is not really a palace at all. It is simply a regular two-story stone house in which Peter the Great, the first Russian Emperor, spent the summer months. However, this house is the beginning of the glorious history of Petersburg palaces, which would soon match and even surpass the grandeur of Versailles, Buckingham Palace and other great palaces of the world. Since its construction, the Summer Palace has hardly been altered, and today it gives its visitors a rare opportunity to see life as it was 300 years ago.