Palace of Queluz

FROM The man in the front seat / March 28, 2017

Located in the town of Queluz, this wonderful 18th century palace was the last of the great rococo places to be built in Europe. In 1794, the palace became the official residence of the Portuguese prince regent and his family, and remained so until the Royal Family fled to Brazil in 1807 following the French Invasion of Portugal. From 1826, the palace slowly fell out of favour with the Portuguese Royal Family an in 1908 it became the property of the state. A fire in 1934 saw the palace extensively damaged and as a result was restored then opened to the public.

Today, one wing of the palace, the Pavilion Dona Maria, built between 1785 and 1792, is now the guest house allocated to lodge foreign heads of state visiting Portugal.

Queluz was the final extravagant period of Portuguese culture that followed the discovery of Brazilian gold in 1690. From the beginning of the 18th century many foreign architects and artists were attracted to Portugal to satisfy the needs of the newly rich monarchy. Many of them arrived wanting to challenge the Italian-influenced Baroque style which was prominent in Europe at the time. Queluz was created in the lighter more delicate rococo style to create a secluded retreat that reflected the lifestyle of the monarchy.

Interior

French artisans decorated the rooms, many of which were small with their walls & ceiling painted to depict allegorical and historical scenes.

Sala de las Mangas

The only room in the state apartments to survive the 1734 fire is a spectacular long gallery lines with tiled wall panels.

The Music Room

Decorated with gilded and painted wood was redesigned in 1798. The ceiling inset with painted cartouches is impressive with its intricate ribbed scheme. The room is more neo-classical than the other rooms and is still used for concerts

The Ball Room

It is the largest room in the palace and was created, by Robillon, by merging 5 smaller rooms together in an oval form. The walls and ceiling are heavily gilded highlighting its rococo style.

The Hall of Ambassadors

The impressive room is sometimes called the ‘Throne Room’ or the ‘Hall of Mirrors’ and was designed by Robillo, in 1757. The room is extremely wide and light, spanning the entire width of the palace, with tall windows on both sides. The floor is a spectacular checkerboard pattern made of white and black marble tiles.

Gardens

One of the highlights of the palace are its gardens which include a wonderful topiary laid out in the manner of Le Notre (gardener of Versailles, Paris). Formal terraces, walkways, statues and fountains are combined with canals creating the formal and the fantastic.

Palace of Queluz
Queluz Palace, Portugal. One of the the great rococo palaces of Europe
Queluz Palace, Portugal. The incredible gardens of Queluz Palace, Portugal
Queluz Palace, Portugal. The Music Room of Queluz Palace
Queluz Palace, Portugal. The Hall of Ambassadors in Queluz Palace, Portugal
Queluz Palace, Portugal. Some of the incredible interior of Queluz Palace, Portugal
Queluz Palace, Portugal. One of the finest Palaces in Portugal, Queluz Palace
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