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Hidden room and basement passages Discovered in the AP.

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Forum Admin:
You can see them in this video:

Announced at the Alexander Palace yesterday, builders have discovered sections of the palace's historic past, constructed in the 19th century, and cemented over in the early 20th. During the continuing large-scale restoration of the palace's basements, workers restoring brick walls literally stumbled into them.

Two secret passageways were sealed into the wall for more than half a century. As builders dismantled the masonry, they could not believe their eyes. Two staircases were preserved, one in perfect condition, and even the wooden railing did had not rotted.

In the adjacent wall is another gem -- a toilet. On the wall, Metlaskoy tile one hundred years old still clings to the walls, but no plumbing remains. It is believed that the toilet belonged to Nicholas II himself, as the stairs lead to his private apartments.

The other Imperial mystery was waiting for restorers literally around the corner. There, a servants' tunnel has miraculously survived under a layer of concrete.

The tunnel, according to correspondent Anastasia Glebova appears to have been an underpass connecting the Alexander Palace kitchens to the main palace constructed in the 19th century by the architect Danini. After World War 2, the tunnels were concreted over.

While the restorers knew Danini's architectural plans from the late 19th century, in which he rebuilt sections of the the Alexander Palace for Nicholas II, they were unaware that In Soviet times, these stairs - and the underpass were bricked over.

The military occupied the building for years, and because cement was scarce and of poor quality, it was easy to see where later work had been done. To the delight of the restorers, the basement was almost untouched by civilization under the plaster and brick.

The management of the museum not decided what to do with the secret staircase and toilet - just to preserve them, or to restore them and restore access to Nicholas II's apartments as they were under the emperor. Neither is the fate of the tunnel certain - whether it is will become available to all visitors or to remain for official use only.

Lady Macduff:
Stairs leading from Nicholas's apartments to the kitchens?

I understood the information to be that there were two separate sections cemented over in the basement: one is the tunnel to the kitchens and the second is a bathroom connected to Nicholas' apartments. So not stairs leading from his apartments to the kitchens.

This is really interesting, but I thought they had already been working on the tunnel leading from the kitchens in recent years. I'm curious which room the stairs come down from-- the new study maybe? Or Nicholas' bathroom (if it didn't already have a toilet in it)?

Forum Admin:
Bob has always known their location. The toilet was just past the swimming bath in his bathroom   Yes the stairs lead from the bathroom to the basement so maids could clean it and plumbers etc could do maintenance work without having to go thru private rooms

Maria the Beautiful:
Thanks for posting the video.  It's exciting to view these areas that have been virtually untouched for so many years.  However, this is confusing to me.   If Bob always knew about their location, why was this a surprising revelation to the workers.   And as EmmyLee mentioned, I thought we were always aware of the tunnel connecting the kitchens to the AP.  Is this a different tunnel they are talking about?   


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