Residenz (Münchner Residenz, Munich Palace) is the former royal palace of the Bavarian monarchs in the center of the city of Munich, Germany
. The Residenz is the largest city palace in Germany and is today open to visitors for its architecture and room decorations, and displays from the former royal collections.
The complex of buildings contains ten courtyards and the museum displays 130 rooms. The three main parts are the Königsbau (near the Max-Joseph-Platz), the Alte Residenz (towards the Residenzstraße) and the Festsaalbau (towards the Hofgarten
). A wing of the Festsaalbau contains the Cuvilliés Theatre since the reconstruction of the Residenz after World
War II. It also houses the Herkulessaal (Hercules Hall), the primary concert venue for the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra.
The first buildings at this site were erected in the year 1385. The sturdy new castle (Neuveste - new fortress), surrounded by wide moats at what used to be the very north eastern corner of the new double ring of walls, replaced the difficult to defend Old Court in the middle of the town as residence of the Wittelsbach rulers.
Inside the palace
The Hall of Antiquities (Antiquarium), built in 1568-1571 for the antique collection of Albert V (1550–1579) by Wilhelm Egkl and Jacobo Strada, is the largest Renaissance hall north of the Alps. Remodeled into a banquet hall by Friedrich Sustris in 1586-1600. The Antiquarium housed the ducal library until 1581. The low hall was then covered with a barrel vault that had 17 window lunettes.Additionally to the rich accumulation of furniture, paintings and sculptures, the museum contains bronze work, clocks, tapestries, porcelain and several special collections.
Founded by Albert V the house jewels of the Wittelsbach are today on display in the treasury (Schatzkammer), ten halls in the east wing of the Königsbau. The collection is one of the most important in the world and spans 1000 years from the early Middle Ages to Neoclassicism. On display are royal insignia, crowns, swords, goblets, goldsmith work, rock crystal, ivory work, icons and numerous other treasures like precious tableware and toiletries.
The coin collection
Founded already by Albert V. the Residenz houses also the Bavarian state's coin collection. With more than 300,000 coins, medals and banknotes from the ancient world to the present time it is one of the world's leading collections.
The Court Garden
The Court Garden (Hofgarten) at the northern side opposite to the Festsaalbau was laid out under Maximilian I. In the middle of the park in French style a circular temple (1615) is crowned by a statue of Bavaria (1594 by Hubert Gerhard).