Peles Castle, Romania
Updated: Dec 5, 2022
Nestled in the Carpathian Mountains in the picturesque town of Sinaia, Peles Castle is a masterpiece of German Neo-Renaissance architecture, considered by many one of the most magnificent castles in Europe.
Peles Castle was built at the initiative of King Carol I, to serve as a summer residence of the royal family until 1947, invested with political, cultural and symbolic functions.
Its construction was between 1873 – 1914 after the projects of the Austrian architects Wilhelm von Doderer and Johannes Schultz. Inaugurated in 1883, it was enlarged and transformed after 1890 by the Czech architect Karel Liman, considered the chief - architect of Peles Castle. From the very beginning the castle was provided with central heating, electricity, running water and telephone and after 1900, with two electric elevators and a central vacuum cleaner. The external architecture and most of the interiors are in German Neo-Renaissance style. The main characteristic of the Peles Castle is the rich decoration in wood. Its 160 rooms are lavishly decorated in a different style or theme. They are adorned with the finest examples of European art, Murano crystal chandeliers, German stained-glass windows and Cordoba leather-covered walls. Some halls are designed in Italian, French, Moorish and Turkish styles. There is a Concert Hall, Music Room (India), Turkish Salon, Great Salon (Italy), Council Room (Switzerland), Moor Hall, Royal Library and so much more. The castle's 60-seat Theater, with royal box, showed the first movie projection in Romania in 1906. Over 4,000 European and Oriental pieces dating from the 15th to the 19th centuries are on display in the armories. The majestic castle is set within a large lush green park with a statue garden in front. The whole complex is composed of three monuments: Peleș Castle, Pelișor Castle, and the Foișor Hunting Lodge. Further up the hill from the main palace is the smaller art nouveau-style Pelisor Castle (literally "little Peles"), built for Carol I's nephew and heir, King Ferdinand and his consort Queen Marie. Pelisor's 70 rooms feature a unique modern design created by Queen Marie, combining Art Nouveau with Byzantine and Celtic elements. Peles Castle is located 48 km (30 mi) from Brașov and 124 km (77 mi) from Bucharest. Nearby attractions include Romania's landmark Bran (Dracula's) castle 48 km (30 mi north-west) and Rasnov Fortress 45 km (28 mi NW).