- Location: Located in the city of Potsdam in Germany.
- Attraction Type: Palace.
- Significance: Wonderful palace of Frederick the Great. It is a German answer to the Palace of Versailles.
- Best time to Visit: May through October.
- How to Reach: From Berlin take Regional Train “R1” in the direction of “Magdeburg” or “Brandenburg”. Inner-city trains “S7” / “S1” in the direction of Potsdam is also available.
- Nearest Airport: Berlin Tegel Airport (TXL).
It is a German answer to the Palace of Versailles! Well, to describe its beauty, one can only use the word ‘fabulous’. Though much smaller than its French counterpart, Sans Souci with its more intimate Rococo style and a number of temples and follies in the Sanssouci Park is quite a popular destination that has always attracted a huge number of tourists from all parts of the world.
Sans Souci is the former palace of Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, which was basically used as a place for relaxation rather than a seat of power. Located at the city of Potsdam in Germany, Sans Souci is quite small in size, more like Chí¢teau de Marly, with just ten principal rooms. Frederick the Great wanted a private residence, which would allow him to relax away from the pomp and the ceremony of the Berlin court. As per his wish, George Wenzeslaus von Knobelsdorff designed the palace between 1745 and 1747. Built on the top of a terraced hill at the center of the Sanssouci Park, Sans Souci has got the great influence of Frederick’s personal preferences in its architecture and hence the style has been characterized as “Frederician Rococo”. Due to some differences of opinions on the site of the palace, its original designer Knobelsdorff was fired in 1746. Later a Dutch architect, Jan Bouman completed the project.
Visiting Sans Souci
Sans Souci is one of a few palaces in Sanssouci Park. So, while going to visit Sans Souci, you can also visit some other attractions in the park as well. The construction of Sans Souci was based on the Rococo style of architecture. The palace has got a single-story block with two adjoining side wings. The entire upper terrace is occupied by the building. There is a dome rising above the hipped roof, containing the name of the palace in gilded bronze letters. The side wings of the palace are screened by two symmetrical rows of trees.
The garden front of the palace is just awesome and would surely attract your attention. Decorated by carved figures of Atlas and Caryatids, grouped in pairs between the windows, the garden front of the palace surely adds some more color to its attraction. Contrary to that, the north entrance faí§ade is quite restrained. On the south, there is a decoration of balustrade with sandstone vases on the roof of the main corps de logis.
The two secondary wings, flanking the corps de logis, provide large service accommodation and domestic offices. During the time of Frederick, these wings were covered with foliage in order to screen their mundane purpose. There were secretaries, gardeners’ and servants’ rooms in the eastern wing. On the other hand, the western wing had a palace kitchen, stables, and a coach house.
It was Frederick William IV who transformed the palace from a place for relaxing to a fully functioning and fashionable country house. Between 1840 and 1842, the small service wings were enlarged. Frederick also played music there. Later, there were more changes in the palace, as the kitchen was moved into the east wing, whereas the small wine cellar of Frederick was enlarged to provide space for storage. The west wing became ‘The Ladies’ Wing’ as it started providing accommodation for ladies-in-waiting as well as the guests.
As you step inside the Sans Souci palace, you will find works of the Baroque tradition. You enter into the palace through the Entrance Hall, where you can see the restrained form of the classical external colonnade. Now enter into the ‘Marmorsaal’ or the Marble Hall — the principal reception room of the palace. White Carrara marble works are surely going to make you spellbound. Now comes next is the Dining Room, decorated with paintings of famous artists. You should also visit the King’s study and bedroom, the circular library, gallery, and guest rooms.
While going to visit Sans Souci, you need to stay at the city of Potsdam. You will be flooded with options while searching for hotels in Potsdam. Some of the Potsdam hotels can be listed as below:
Steigenberger Hotel Sanssouci
Allee nach Sanssouci 1
Tel: +49 331 9091-0
Fax: +49 331 9091-909
Dorint Sanssouci Potsdam