Author Topic: Basement/Attic  (Read 11469 times)

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Almedingen

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Basement/Attic
« on: April 27, 2004, 01:27:21 PM »
Does the Alexander Palace have a basement/cellar?  If so, what was originally down there and what is it like now?

Also, does the palace have some sort of an attic?

Christine Martin

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2004, 10:07:30 AM »
Emperor Nicholas I had a kitchen built in the basement of the Palace for his personal use.  He enjoyed cooking for himself and for his family.   I cannot imagine there will be any evidence of this today.

I remember seeing in the Archive at Pavlovsk Palace photographs of off duty army officers drinking - I presume tea - and playing cards.   From memory, the basement had a low. vaulted ceiling supported by a number of pillars.  

Trust this is of some interest.

Christine

nerdycool

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2004, 01:51:22 PM »
You're right Christine, it is of some interest (to me at least). I think it's because there's very little published of these areas and I am curious to know about the WHOLE palace, not just the Imperial and public parts. Knowing there's an attic and basement makes it seem like a real home.

Janet_W.

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2004, 02:53:52 PM »
What interests me is that Nicholas I, Emperor of all the Russias, enjoyed cooking for his family. What great information!

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2004, 06:25:06 PM »
The kitchens were pretty far away and to order anything was a big deal - Nicholas I liked to whip up fast stuff he liked without any huss and fuss.

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2004, 09:48:03 AM »
BTW - the kitchen tunnel came into the palace underneath Alexandra's balcony - under her Formal Reception Room.  the stairs from the tunnel led to a guard station in the basement.  The guards rooms were beneath the Bedroom, the Mauve Room and the Pallisander Room.

Bob

Arleen_Ristau

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2004, 04:05:14 PM »
Bob, Do you have any idea of WHAT exactly Nicholas liked to cook?? I would certainly love to know.  I wonder if Alexandra had any interest in cooking......I remember reading about the girls learning to bake bread in Ekaterinburg.  All of your little details make everything seem so real and your pictures are always unbelievable, thank you Bob for everything.    ..Arleen


Offline Antonio_P.Caballer

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2004, 04:51:02 PM »
I think Nicholas had some digestive problems(may be an ulcer?) and, for example, would not take caviar often. As far as i know neither he nor the Empress liked the elaborate french cuisine dishes, Nicholas prefering the plain russian food and Alexandra eating mainly fruit and vegetables. I read she did not care for food, although she liked to have some english biscuits and fruit while in bed. I remember seing some photographs of the Empress helping along with the servants and other ladies to prepare the meal, wearing white aprons, during a picnic in Spala in 1901. Alexandra learnt since childhood to be useful and it fitted her character.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Antonio_P.Caballer »

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2004, 06:43:12 PM »
Arlene - it was Nicholas I who used the 'short order kitchen'.  Alexander I gave the palace to Nicholas for his use when he married, in many respects it was 'home' for him.

Nicholas II drank a pitcher of milk everyday...

Bob

Sarai_Porretta

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2004, 08:07:21 AM »
Arleen,
There is an older thread under "The Alexander Palace" category called "Food, Wine, and Meals" where I posted a list of some of Nicholas's alleged favourite foods. There is also a thread under "The Imperial Family" category called "Alexandra's Eating Habits" which discusses what Alix liked to eat. As far as whether they actually cooked any of this, I don't know, but as far as I recall, I have never come across any accounts of them actually cooking themselves.

However, as Antonio pointed out, there are a couple of photographs in the book The Jewel Album of Tsar Nicholas II that indeed show Alexandra wearing a white apron and helping out with the cooking for a picnic in the forest.

neva

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2004, 09:48:28 PM »
Does anyone know if the tunnel connecting the AP to the kitchen exists today? And does the kitchen building exist itself?
Also did the family have a taster for the food to prevent any assassination attempt?
Thanks,
neva

Offline Antonio_P.Caballer

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2004, 09:51:34 PM »
Hello Neva,

The kitchen building does exist today, and in good shape. The tunnel i cannot tell you for sure but i would think that it is quite possible it survived the war.

neva

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #12 on: June 20, 2004, 09:53:09 PM »
Thanks for the info.Do you know what is inside the kitchen now?

Offline Antonio_P.Caballer

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Re: Basement/Attic
« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2004, 09:59:42 PM »
I´m afraid that the building is placed inside the territory that is forbidden for tourists...I hope someday the garden surrounding the destroyed corner balcony and the kitchen lake will be open again.