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Palaces and museums of St. Petersburg - Yusupov Palace

Yusupov Palace on Moika embankment is the unique architectural ensemble of XVIII- XX, historical and cultural monument which gained the reputation of an "encyclopedia" of Saint- Petersburg aristocratic interior design. The palace is a masterpiece made by the greatest architects of that time such as: J.-B. Vallen de la Mothe, A. Mihailov, Hyppolito Monighetti, A. Stepanov, A.Beloborodov. The great edifice with 57 others belonged to rich and powerful Yusupov family. It was considered that Yusupov were as wealthy as Tsar’s family.

The Palace interiors of the mansion are magnificent. Six halls and living-rooms are designed in the style of Russian empire. Luxury lounges and spacious rooms were intended to ceremonial receptions and large balls because of which palace became popular throughout Saint-Petersburg. Due to works of many architects Palace interiors are accomplished in various styles: the Home Theatre (Russian Baroque style) is richly adorned by golden modeling with painted shades stands out; some of the rooms of the first floor were decorated in Neo-Classicism style; a number of drawing rooms, including Turkish study, were stylized in the spirit of Oriental art. It is necessary to notice that there is a small private theatre where were held performances of by Franz Liszt, Alexander Dargomyzhsky, Fyodor Chaliapin, and Anna Pavlova.

Yusupov Palace became famous not only as a majestic edifice and the center of high society life in the St. Petersburg – but also in that very palace Grigory Rasputin, favourite of Nicolas II, Russia's last tsar, was murdered. The randy mystic from Siberia came to St.Petersburg in 1911, within a few years had become one of the most influential men in government circles that obviously was the source of distraught and tremendous envy among political figures. And on 17 December 1916 the last owner of the palace, Prince Felix Yusupov, Grand Duke Dmitry Pavlovich, Vladimir Purishkevich (a deputy of the State Duma) and two other conspirators murdered Grigory Rasputin in order to save the Russian throne from his influence.

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