Holnstein Palace

The Palais Holnstein is a grand historic mansion built in 1733 by order of Elector Charles Albert. It is renowned as Munich’s finest example of Rococo-style architecture.

The mansion’s design was crafted by François de Cuvilliés, a Belgian-born Bavarian decorative designer who played a significant role in popularizing the Rococo architectural style in Bavaria. Construction took place between 1733 and 1737. Elector Charles Albert intended the mansion to serve as the residence for his mistress, Baroness Sophie Caroline of Ingleheim, and their illegitimate son, Count Franz Ludwig von Holnstein. For the interior decoration, he enlisted the talents of Johann Baptist Zimmermann, a renowned painter and master of stucco plasterwork.

In 1821, the Palais Holnstein underwent a transformation, becoming the Archiepiscopal Palace and serving as the residence for the Archbishops of Munich and Freising. One of the most notable occupants of the palace was Cardinal Joseph Aloysius Ratzinger, who resided here after being appointed Archbishop of Munich and Freising by Pope Paul VI from 1977 to 1982. Later, he ascended to the papacy as Pope Benedict XVI, reigning from 2005 to 2013. During his time as Pope, he once again stayed at the palace during his visit to Munich in September 2006.

Unfortunately, the interior of the palace is not accessible to the public due to its current use as the Archbishop’s residence. However, the splendid Rococo façade remains open for all to admire.

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