Walking through downtown Luxembourg City we were completely unaware what we were looking at when we arrrived at the Grand Ducal Palace. The palace is not set back from the street and aside from its size, the presence of guards out front, and the flags flying from the roof it is sometimes mistaken for something else.
The palace is the official residence of the Grand Duke where he carries out his administrative functions. There are extensive state rooms on the first floor of the palace and the rooms are used to receive heads of state and dignitaries from other countries.
The palace was built in the late 1500's and served as the Luxembourg City Hall for over 200 years. Beginning in 1890 the palace was exclusively reserved for the Royal Duke and his family. Around the same time the palace received a major rennovation and a new wing was constructed.
The Grand Ducal Palace was occupied by the Nazis during World War 2 and the interior was significantly damaged. Over the next fifty years the palace was restored to its previous glory.
While it is said there are tours of the palace, we could find no evidence of such tours while we were there. We only admired the front facade and took pictures.
The country of Luxembourg is a monarch and its head of state is the Grand Duke of Luxembourg. It's largely a symbolic role, as proven in 2008 when the Grand Duke refused to sign a law allowing for euthanasia. He was stripped of his role in signing laws, thus proving that Luxembourg is a democracy.
The city residence of the ducal family is at the Grand Ducal Palace. It is one of the finest buildings in the city and looks like a place of power. It did once function as a Town Hall, but now, like the Duke, it has had its status reduced to nothing more than a family home. It's still guarded by armed military, however.
The Grand Ducal Palace was built in the 16th century in a Moorish-style architecture. Nowadays, this major sight of Luxembourg City attracts all the tourists and may be a reminder of fairy tale castles in Walt Disney cartoons. The luxurious interior of this city palais (there are neither palace gardens nor a park) can only be visited a few times a year, but you can catch a glimpse through the windows on the right-hand side of the palais. The palace is the official residence of the Grand Duke and includes the Chamber of Deputies on the right-hand entrance part. One military soldier usually gards the main entrance. During Nazi rule, the palace was mainly used as a tavern and concert hall, much of the interior has been stolen or heavily damaged and had to be refurnished.
The Grand Ducal Palace is the official residence of the Grand Duke of Luxembourg, who is the head of the Grand Duchy.
The building with many Rennaissance style decorations was constructed in the late 16th century. During WWII it was used as a concert hall and tavern for the Nazis.
A guard with a gun is usually standing in front of the building and is probably more than happy to have his photo taken.
The Grand Ducal Palace is located in the city centre at the Rue Du Marche aux Herbes, just east of the square Place Guillaume II.
This XVI century palace was built during Spanish rule and until recently was the home of the ducal family of Luxembourg (they now reside in a castle outside the city). The building still serves as the office of the Grand Duke. Royal family apparently is fairly popular in Luxembourg.
In its function as the city residence of the Grand-Ducal family, it is situated right in the core of the Old Town.
Formerly the first town hall of the city occupied the site of the present palace; destroyed by a gunpowder explosion (1554), the town hall was rebuilt 20 years later. In the middle of the 18th century the former City Scales were added as an extension, whereas the Chamber of Deputies was built as an annex in 1859.
Since 1890 the main building has been the Grand Ducal Palace. From 1992 to 1995 it was restored thoroughly.
When the royal family is off sunning themselves on the French Riviera from around mid-July to early September, the Grand Ducal Palace is open to visitors for guided tours but we were there just about a week too late, the tourism office said that the tours ran through September 3rd. If you do go in the summer months, stop by the Tourism office where you can pick up tickets.
Alas, we only got to see the Palace from the outside and it's a pretty Moorish style building, built in the 1570s when Luxembourg was under Spanish rule. The royals lived here at the end of the 19th century but it's now used as offices and for formal receptions, the tanned Grand Duke and his family live elsewhere in Luxembourg.
The palace almost caught us by surprise, as it is very understated, although elegant, on the outside. The guard out front clued us in that the building most be something. It is the official residence of the Duke of Luxembourg, although the family usually stays elsewhere. The building was started in the 16th century and has been continually expanded, and rebuilt after a gunpowder explosion. My understanding is that the inside is very lavish, but we did not visit.
Apparently tours of the interior of the Palace of the Grand Dukes are very popular and it's wise to book a day in advance at the tourist office in the nearby Place d'Armes. Tours are only with a guide and are offered in English only during the high season for around 5 Euros per adult. I didn't visit the interior, but from what I've read it's very lavish and anything but understated. The palace originally was the town hall, but later was converted into the winter residence of the Luxembourg royals. Architecturally, I couldn't quite pin down the exact style, but it's an appealing enough building from the outside.
This fascinating building is not far from the Notre Dame Cathedral. It's architecture reminds of buildings typically found in France. Of course, the close proximity to France could have something to do with this. The palace is very elegant and stands in a nice area of the old city. A lone guard stood watch at the main entrance.
The Grand Duke's Palace is no longer the permanent residence of the Grand Duke of Luxembourg - it houses his office as well as being the venue for civic receptions. In the summer, whilst the royal family are away on holiday, there are tours available, with the tickets available from the Tourist Information Office but limited to 40 per tour. It was originally built during Spanish rule during the 1570s and then extended during the 19th century. There is a guard on duty outside but otherwise security is relatively relaxed when compared with other royal palaces - but then again the Grand Duke has always been a lot more approachable than most royals.
The palace has been the official residence ot the Grand Duke since 1980. Before that, even Louis XIV and Napoleon stayed here. In front of the palace, the Luxemburgers gather here on June 23rd to greet their sovereign.\
I hope someone can tell my why on this date.