A royal palace awaits a new purpose
After the death of our former Dutch Queen Juliana and Prince Bernhard (2004), Soestdijk Palace was opened to the public for a number of years. The Dutch State has owned this palace since the early 1970s, but it was recently sold and there are now plans to renovate the building for new uses.
The seventeenth-century building, originally intended as a country residence, had been refurbished and renovated several times over the centuries. Princess Juliana and Prince Bernhard were the first permanent residents in 1937.
Preparations for photographing the stuczaal (main reception hall) in Soestdijk Palace. Despite the natural daylight, additional light was needed; this was to enhance the photo as naturally as possible.
The ownership of most of the unique furnishings has been transferred to the Dutch State and is maintained by the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands.
These photographs were taken in 2019, mainly to portray how the rooms were furnished. The palace will be emptied in the not too far future and the furnishings will be stored elsewhere so that the major renovation can begin.
The stuczaal (Lit. stucco hall) is the palace’s most important reception area. The interior was finished in late-empire style in marble, stucco and scagliola (imitation marble) based on a design by architect Jan de Greef (1816-1821).
The Waterloo hall is another reception room, also created in 1816-1821. The large painting The Battle of Quatre Bras was painted by J.W Pieneman.
The white dining room is the palace’s official dining room; the architecture is also from 1816-1821 and both Anna Paulowna (1850-1851) and Queen Emma (1879-1934) added additional furnishings.
Exotic furniture in the cannon room, originally furnished around 1850 and redecorated around 1900.
These cannons are replicas that King William II had made for his children to play with. (The same William who is celebrated in the Waterloo hall.)
The hunting room on the second floor. The painted ceiling dates from the seventeenth-century, while the rest of the furnishings date from the nineteenth-century. Everything here is in hunting style even the curtains have a hunting motif print.