This great palace is tucked in between the cathedral and the Golden Roof, stretching along Renweg. This magnificent and imperious building was the responsibility of Archduke Siegmund the Rich, who had it constructed in the Gothic style in the 15th century. From a distance on the outside, along Renweg, it doesn't look all that different from the elegant Georgian buildings of Britain, but close up and in the courtyards inside it displays a traditional Germanic style, with the layers of yellow and white colours.
Along the roofs are what like (possibly ornamental) chimneys with triple archways. If you look carefully you will see that the ornamental chimney near the Hofkirche (Court Church) is different from the others and looks like a little church itself.
The Hofburg was the home of the Habsburg royal family in the Tirol. The history of the Hofburg goes back to the 14th century but the building has been expanded, remodeled and renovated many times during the centuries and the much of the present incarnation of the Hofburg dates from the reign of the Empress Maria Theresa in the 18th century.
The Hofburg is home to the marginally interesting Alpine Club Museum, but the real attraction is a chance to visit the Imperial Apartments. Here you find lavishly decorated rooms befitting an Empress (although the original furniture was pinched by the Bavarians in the 19th century before they had to hand the Hofburg back to Austria following the congress of Vienna). My favourite is the Giant's Hall, thus named for the Hercules frescoes which used to decorate the room in a previous form. Now this huge space is decorated with portraits of Empress Maria Theresa's children and grandchildren.
Another highlight is the Audience Chamber which Maria Theresa had decorated as "a room for the Lorraine Family" to honour the family of her husband Francis Stephen.
The biggest drawback of a visit is that they have a (strictly enforced) no photography policy, which I always resent at least a little.
Entry is free if you have an Innsbruck card and includes an audioguide.
The Imperial Palace (Hofburg) was built by archduke Siegmund the Rich in Gothic style around 1460. It was rebuilt in Baroque style by emperess Maria Theresia between 1754 and 1773. Inside this palace there are 25 state apartments dating from 18th and 19t centuries and the Giants' Hall with many portraits of the Habsburgs.
The most important museum of Innsbruck is The Imperial Palace (Hofburg) - the 15th century where the provincial royalties used to live. This is a must visit palace while in Innsbruck. The interiors, formerly 25 apartments, are very impressive. I have liked especially the grand ballroom (click to enlarge the picture).
For more inside pictures of Hofburg visit the Hofburg Pictures Travelogue
In 1401 Duke Friedrich IV got the house in a barter deal.
Towards the end of the 15th century, with Emperor Maximilian displaying the splendour of Court life in it, the building had today's size already.
Empress Maria Theresia had it transformed in two renovation stages into a monumental residence of late baroque style.
One of the many showrooms containing precious furniture and paintings is the giant room (Riesensaal) known as the most marvellous feast and ceremonial room in the Alps, it gives a vivid impression of a past time ruling class life!
The decoration and furniture in most of the rooms are not of the same date of origin, but of the same style. Most pieces of furniture are of the 19th century, such as the Biedermeier pieces made by Johann Nepomuk Geyer, a carpenter of the city, or the 2nd Rokoko-style furniture by La Vigne. Still, of the items of Maria Theresian times there is almost nothing left.
In 1990, the revitalization of the whole Imperial Residence has been started. As far as the museum section is concerned restauration works are partly focused on the entrance foyer with the Cafeteria, an elevator for disabled persons and on the other hand on further scientific investigations of interiors which are based on a well preserved "business and furniture inventory" of the year 1841.
The "Imperial guest room" was chosen for restauration and adapted to the technical standards of a modern museum with maximal regard to preserving authentic old parts, a method the whole, long-term restauration concept for all other showrooms is based on.
Newly renovated , the Imperial palace in Innsbruck is definitely worth a visit. Even if it's just to admire the splendid Giant hall, scene of gala dinners, banquets and high society events and Sissi's appartments. When I went there, there were only a few visitors , so you can admire the place in tranquility, without the crowds of tourists that get on the way and the tourist guides talking in all the languages. For those interested in WWII events , there is a slideshow if photographs from different events held in the Hofburg during the Nazi occupation.
Open whole year round
Daily from 9.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m.
Entry until 4.30 p.m.
The Hofburg is right across the street from the theater, and is illuminated at night. It was the seat of the Habsburg family of princes, kings and emperors for over six centuries. Since the end of the First World War, which was also the end of Habsburg rule in Austria, the Hofburg has been used as a museum.
It is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission as of 2006 was EUR 5.45 for adults, EUR 4.00 for "seniors" aged 60 or over, EUR 3.63 for students, etc., down to EUR 1.09 for children from 6 to 14 years old.
These odd prices probably are the result of conversion from the old prices in Austrian Shillings, which were phased out with the introduction of the Euro as the common European currency on January 1, 2002.
Originally built in the 15th century by Archduke Siegmund the Rich, the Imperial Palace was rebuilt in Baroque style with Rococo detail by architect Johann Martin Gumpp on the orders of Empress Maria Theresa. The building, flanked by domed towers, has four wings which house state rooms, private apartments and a chapel. Definitely worth a look is the enormous Riesensaal (Giant’s Hall) is a 30 metre long state room decorated with ceiling frescoes, adorned with portraits of the Hapsburgs and embellished with marble and gold; the courtyard is also a wonderful place to visit in the evening.
Maria Theresa had the design of the palace changed last in 1755, and it was expanded into a royal palace, being completed in 1770. It previously was the the ruling family of Asburgos that had control for 100+ years. The Hapsburgs ruled from here for six centuries, through WWI. The most impressive site inside is the great hall at 90 feet and colorful frescoed ceilings, fringed by gold and marble. There are also a number of family Hapsburg portraits.
Open daily 9:00 to 5:00PM, the cost is 5.45 Euro for normal, or 4 Euro senior
The giants' room is the most beautiful room of whole Hofburg. It was the saloon of the parties with frescos on the ceiling made by F.A. Maulbertch in 1775. These frescos represent the Triumph of the dynastic of the House of Habsburg-Lorenas. You can see To the walls the portraits of Maria Theresa of Austria, of her husband Francis I of Lorena, Joseph II and of their children.
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