Thursday, 1 June 2017

2nd Floor Corner Balcony in the Winter Palace

On May 27th 1827 Nicholas I approved the drawings and cost estimates for a ‘balcony on the middle floor of the [southwest] Winter Palace in the former half of the Grand Duchess Anna Pavlovna’.

A month later on June 3rd Nicholas ordered the architect Charlemagne to prepare a project for two more small balconies for the northwest corner with a ‘pattern similar to the lattice that will be done for the Empress Marie Feodorovna’.

The southwest corner balcony was located on the 2nd floor facing the Admiralty parade ground. The documents reveal the decision was made in June to redesign the Dowager Empress Maria's apartment to include her daughter's former room.

After the 1837 fire, the small balconies in the northwest and southwest corners were rebuilt. In 1841 with the marriage of Alexander II and Marie Alexandrova, the room with the balcony was now known as the Gold Drawing Room with windows facing Palace Square and the Admiralty.

Sadonovikov’s 1850s painting (below) of the parade with the white awning

Photographs (below) of the balcony on the 2nd floor in the southwest corner from the 1850s to 1910s

 View (below) of the balcony from the former private garden in 1924

The architect A. Sivkov dismantled the small balconies in the late 1920s. Photograph (below) in 1944 showing the balcony door to the former Gold Drawing Room remained until reconstructed as a window in the late 1940s.


  1. Great group of images. I suppose the balconies spoiled the "line" of the palace, but they were rather charming and must have been nice for its inhabitants. (Still can't understand why the garden "fence" was done away with.)

  2. I am curious why they installed the balconies and awnings on the windows. The stay of the imperial family in the Winter Palace was only from December to April at the latest. With heating an issue, the sun would be lovely even Nicholas II comments on it in his private study.

  3. Great job Joanna. You are bringing this stuff alive for us. Thanks. By the way, are there any pictures of the Entrances to the Winter Palace in the past or presently? Not just the ones outside but those inside? The internet seems to go for the grand pics.

  4. Thank you very much. I have plans of the small entrances, descriptions of the vestibules and some photos of the basement's doors etc. I have photos of the interiors of Saltykov entrance and opposite former guard entrance to the large courtyard and the staircase which is amazing, and of HM Own Entrance on Palace Square and Commandant entrance.