Palais de L'Isle, Annecy

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  • sylvie-uk's Profile Photo

    the "palais de 'ile"

    by sylvie-uk Updated Aug 10, 2004

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    it was the house of the Annecy chatelain around the 12 century then became the "administratif hotel" when the count of Geneva settled in Annecy.
    then it was used as a prison and was doomed to be demolished at the end of the 19th century but was saved when it was classified as an historical monument.
    nowdays, it houses exhibitions and museum.

    palais de l'ile
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  • Lilasel's Profile Photo

    Palais de l'isle

    by Lilasel Updated Nov 14, 2005

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    The governer of Annecy's first residence as form the 12th century, it then served as administrative halls when the Count of Geneva settled in Annecy. Seat of the judicature, the Mint, a prison, it was doomed to be demolished at the end of the 19th century, but was saved just in time thanks to its classification as a Historical Monument. It now houses exhibitions.

    (c) Lilasel (c) Lilasel

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  • GUYON's Profile Photo

    Palais de l'Isle

    by GUYON Written Aug 9, 2003

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    The Palais de l'Isle (other picture on the main page) has the fame to be the most photographed monument in France (I thought it was the Tour Eiffel).
    It looks like the prow of a stone boat in the water of the Thiou, a small river going to the Lake of Annecy.
    It is the town museum : a mix of art and history, of modern and ancient.
    Open daily 1st June to 30 September - 10AM to 6PM.
    The other months the schedule is reduced.
    Ticket : 3.10 Euros.

    Palais de l'Isle (Annecy)
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  • Kate-Me's Profile Photo

    Palais de L'isle

    by Kate-Me Written Jul 21, 2006

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    The Palais de l'Isle (also called the "old prison") was constructed in the 12th century. It is the symbol of the town and is among the most photographed monuments in the whole of France.

    We enjoyed our visit, but as with many chateaux and prisons which we visited during our 5 week tour of France, found it more romantic and interesting on the outside than on the inside.
    Still, the huge doors and empty prison cells inside are interesting in their own right.

    I'd recommend visiting early in the day, soon after opening, as the rooms are small and it was quite difficult for us to move between the various rooms, dodging tour groups of 30 or 40 people.

    prison cell door and another
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  • firechick's Profile Photo

    Palais de l'Ille (Vieilles Prisons)

    by firechick Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    This instantly recognizable city landmark is one of the most photographed buildings in France (or so I was told).

    It sits on a small island in the middle of the river. It was built in the 12th century as a home to a lord, and became a City Administrative Hall when the count of Geneva controlled Annecy and in the Middle ages up until the 1865 it was a prison. It became a national monument in 1900 but it was again used as a prison briefly during WWII.

    Now it is a museum showing the history of the building as well as history of Annecy.

    You can always see the outside of the building. Museum hours (no admission 45 minutes before closing) are as follows:

    Winter season (Oct - end May): All days (except tuesday) 10-12 noon and 2-5 p.m.

    Summer season (June - end Sept) : All days 10.30 a.m until 6 p.m.

    Closed major holidays.

    The Palais
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  • balhannah's Profile Photo

    CASTLE PALACE OF THE ISLAND [PALAIS de l'Ile]

    by balhannah Written Dec 27, 2011

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    This would probably be the most recognzed sight in Annecy. I know it was one I was very interested in seeing.

    It is an original monument from the Middle Age's, that is built on a rocky Island. The quadrangular shape of the building is interesting! Home to a Prison and a Mint of the Count's of Geneva, it was first mentioned in 1325.
    From the 18th century, the building was used for Administration, while still being used as a Prison until 1864. When a new Prison was built, it was used as a home for the elderly.
    What a mixture this building has been used for!
    In 1900, the Palais de l'Ile became a historical monument.

    OPEN.... October 1 to May 31: Every day except Tuesday from 10am to 12pm & 2 - 5PM
    June 1 to September 30: Every day from 10:30 - 6PM

    ADMISSION IN 2011.....Adult's...3.50 euro
    FREE 1st Sunday of the month from October 1 to May 31
    You can buy a combined ticket to the Chateau and Palais de l I'le for 6.50 euro

    PALAIS de l'Ile PALAIS de l'Ile PALAIS de l'Ile
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  • Goner's Profile Photo

    The Prison

    by Goner Updated Aug 23, 2004

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    The Palais de L'Isle is a former prison and an Annecy landmark. It is on an island in the middle of the main canal (Thiou Canal) and seems to float there. During the 12th century this former fortified house was the center of the first domain held by the De L'Isle family. It was acquired by the De Geneve family in the 13th century, then became the residence of the Monthoux family. In 1355 it became a minting workshop; it was later acquired by Janus of Savoy. In the 16th century it became a government building. The Revolutionary Authorities turned it into the City Prison in 1864. The prison is now a museum, although small it makes for an interesting visit, with small rooms and cells to explore. Request a museum guide in English as there is no escorted tour.

    Former Prison

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  • shannsow's Profile Photo

    A great shopping town

    by shannsow Written Feb 11, 2013

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    Shopping with the History,is very unusual in Malaysia.Full dinner table and chair decorate to all corridor and surround to jail house name's Palais de l'Isle.Palais de l'Isle is a jail house for the past,and now it be a famous jail in Annecy.

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  • Maryimelda's Profile Photo

    Palais de L'Isle

    by Maryimelda Written Oct 13, 2012

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    The old prison was built back in the 12th century on the Thiou Canal in Annecy.

    It is the centrepiece of the Old Town and believably one of the most photographed historical sights in all of France today. It is a worthy subject for a photo or two both day and night. At night it becomes extremely colourful and very striking indeed.

    This icon af Annecy is now a museum.

    For many of us it is the Palas de L'Isle which brings us to Annecy,. It is the bait which hooks us and then rewards us with an exceptional town to see whilst we are here.

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  • GentleSpirit's Profile Photo

    The Palais de l'Isle

    by GentleSpirit Updated Oct 22, 2014

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    This is by far the most common picture you will see of Annecy. You can't miss it, it is one of the places in Annecy that always has a crowd around. The Palais has served as the residence for the Lord of Annecy, though it has also served as a courthouse and administrative headquarters. Its most famous role was that of a prison. Judging from the size of it there must not have been much crime since its not really a huge structure.

    Today you will see a museum inside containing information about the city's history. i will say the museum is a bit dark so reading anything in there is hard to do.

    Palais de l'Isle
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  • iNorv9's Profile Photo

    Palais de l'Ile: An enduring symbol of Old Town

    by iNorv9 Updated Dec 21, 2005

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    Walking through downtown Annecy you can't miss the Palais de l'Ile, a former prison dating back to the 12th century.

    Quick tip: The Palais de l'Ile also serves as an "urban interpretive center". For about 4 euro you'll see plenty of old artifacts, and even a few torture instruments.

    Bottomline: One of the most famous buildings in Annecy. Museum is interesting, but probably not worth the admission (except for serious medieval history buffs)

    Palais de l'Ile View of the inside courtyard

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  • mindcrime's Profile Photo

    palais de L’isle

    by mindcrime Written Dec 18, 2014

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    Probably the building that attracts most photo shootings in Annecy is the Palais de L’isle. Hard to be missed as it’s located in the center of Thiou canal with numerous café around the canal so you can admire it from there or just stop at the small bridge like we did and take some photos of this former palace/prison stone building.

    It was built it 1132 as the residence of Lord of Annecy but later became the headquarters of Count of Geneva and then changed role numerous times, courthouse, mint and jail for many years (until 1865 but also during WWII). There’s a small info board (pic 3) on the wall that gives some extra information(but mostly in french): the building in the shape of the bow of a ship was doubtlessly built in the 15th century. In the 16th century, the building was completely refitted to install rooms for the courts of justice.

    In our days it houses the local History Museum but we didn’t go inside as my friend have been there already in the past and was a bit disappointed by the modern art exhibition (there are only a few corners that provides information about the city or the Palais itself). But maybe worth the try just to see the prison cells from inside too. But I guess there weren’t many prisoners there considering the not really huge of the prison.

    If you decide to go inside you better buy the combo ticket that includes Chateau de Annecy too (free on first Sunday of the month)

    Anyway, we took lots of pictures though as the exterior of the structure is great, try to be there after sunset too if you can, when the setting becomes amazingly beautiful then (pic 5), almost magical…

    palais de L���isle palais de L���isle info board at palais de L���isle palais de L���isle palais de L���isle
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  • Flying.Scotsman's Profile Photo

    The best thing to do in Annecy - very little

    by Flying.Scotsman Written Feb 25, 2014

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    Annecy is one of the most photographed towns in France - and for good reason. Spend as much time as possible just wandering around the old town or la vieille ville. Do not confuse this with Annecy le Vieux which is on the outskirts of Annecy. You will probably want to start your informal walking tour by seeing the Palais de l'Isle, the centre of photogenic Annecy. Here are some photos to give you a taste.

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