Drottningholm Palace

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The Drottningholm Palace (Swedish: Drottningholms slott) is the private residence of the Swedish royal family. It is located in Drottningholm. It is built on the island Lovön (in Ekerö Municipality of Stockholm County), and is one of Sweden's Royal Palaces. It was originally built in the late 16th century. It served as a residence of the Swedish royal court for most of the 18th century. Apart from being the private residence of the Swedish royal family, the palace is a popular tourist attraction.

The palace and its grounds have seen many renovations, changes and additions over the past 400 years. The largest renovation, in which electricity, heating, sewage, water lines were either installed or updated and the castle roof replaced, took place between 1907 and 1913. During a 20-year-period beginning around 1977, several major areas of the palace were restored and rebuilt. The library and national hall received much of the attention and fire protection was installed throughout the palace. In 1997, work began to clean and rebuild the exterior walls. This was completed in 2002.

The gardens and park areas surrounding the castle and its buildings are one of the main attractions for the tourists that visit the palace each year.The gardens have been established in stages since the castle was built, resulting in different styles of parks and gardens.

The oldest part of the gardens was created at the end of the 17th century under the direction of Hedwig Eleonora. The father and son Tessin led the project that created a baroque garden right outside the main palace, flanked by thick tree avenues. The many statues scattered throughout this area were created by the artist Adrian de Vries. The baroque garden was neglected along with the rest of the grounds during the 19th century, but was restored in the 1950s and 1960s on the initiative of Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden.

Gustav III of Sweden took the initiative for what is sometimes called the English garden section of Drottningholm. This lies north of the baroque garden and consists of two ponds with canals, bridges, large open sections of grass, and trees in groups or avenues. Walkways are laid out throughout this large part of the park. Throughout this area "vistas" can be seen, cleared lines of sight that are intentionally constructed to draw the eye to a particular view. Most of the antique marble statues throughout the gardens were purchased by Gustav III from Italy. The purpose of the statues is to surprise a visitor by their unexpected appearance in a green area, or as a focal point for a vista.
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