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Mikhailovsky Castle

St Michael's Castle was designed by Vincenzo Brenna and Vasily Bazhenov (1797-1801) as a parade residence for the Emperor Paul I. The Emperor himself added to the project. It is named after St Michael the Archangel (patron saint of the House of Romanov). This is the only palace building in Russia in the style of romantic classicism. After the assassination of the Emperor Paul I (on the night of the 11th/12th of March 1801) the castle became the property of the Ministry of the Imperial Court. In February 1823 St Michael's Castle was presented to the Central College of Engineering and was renamed the Engineers Castle. A time of vast upheavals came to St Michael's Castle in the 1990s. In 1994, the building was officially awarded to the Russian Museum. A major reconstruction programme was announced, aimed at restoring the original decor and architecture. Three of the facades and the adjoining gardens have now been fully restored. Part of the original Resurrection Canal has been recreated. The Chapel of St Michael the Archangel, the private apartments of Grand Duke Nicholas Pavlovich and Grand Duke Konstantin Pavlovich, the Main Staircase, the Antique Room, the Raphael Gallery, the Dining Room and the Empress Marie Fyodorovna Throne Room have all been restored to their former glory. They now host exhibitions of art from the collection of the Russian Museum Ч many of them repeating the dreams and ideas of the original owner of the palace, Tsar Paul. In May 2003 new permanent expositions were opened in restored rooms of the castle Ч The History of the Castle and its Inhabitants, Antique Subjects in the Russian Art and the Renaissance in the Oeuvre of Russian Artists

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