The Olympic Park in Munich

December 18th, 2017 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks, Sport

Olympic Park Munich © Tobi 87/cc-by-sa-4.0

Olympic Park Munich © Tobi 87/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Olympiapark München (English: Olympic Park Munich) in Munich is an Olympic Park which was constructed for the 1972 Summer Olympics. Located in the Oberwiesenfeld neighborhood of Munich, the Park continues to serve as a venue for cultural, social, and religious events such as events of worship. The Park is administered by Olympiapark München GmbH, a holding company fully owned by the state capital of Munich. The concept of a “green Olympic Games” was chosen, and so too was the orientation toward the ideals of democracy. Officials sought to integrate optimism toward the future with a positive attitude toward technology, and in so doing set aside memories of the past, such as the Olympic Games of 1936 in Berlin. The architecture firm of Günther Behnisch and its partners developed a comprehensive master plan for the sports and recreation area, which was under construction from 1968 until 1972. The landscape layout was designed by landscape architect Günther Grzimek. The eye-catching tensile structure that covers much of the park was designed by German architect and engineer Frei Otto with Günther Behnisch. In all, the project cost 1.35 billion German Marks to complete.   read more…

Nymphenburg Palace in Munich

December 4th, 2017 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

Nymphenburg Palace © Richard Bartz/cc-by-sa-2.5

Nymphenburg Palace © Richard Bartz/cc-by-sa-2.5

The Nymphenburg Palace (“Castle of the Nymph“), is a Baroque palace in Munich, Bavaria. The palace was the main summer residence of the former rulers of Bavaria of the House of Wittelsbach. The palace, together with its park, is now one of the most famous sights of Munich. The baroque facades comprise an overall width of about 700 metres. Some rooms still show their original baroque decoration while others were later redesigned in rococo or neoclassical style. The palace serves also as headquarters of the Bavarian Administration of State-Owned Palaces, Gardens and Lakes. The palace was commissioned by the prince-electoral couple Ferdinand Maria and Henriette Adelaide of Savoy to the designs of the Italian architect Agostino Barelli in 1664 after the birth of their son Maximilian II Emanuel. The central pavilion was completed in 1675. As a building material it utilised limestone from Kelheim. The castle was gradually expanded and transformed over the years. Starting in 1701, Maximilian Emanuel, the heir to Bavaria, a sovereign electorate of the Holy Roman Empire, undertook a systematic extension of the palace. Two pavilions were added each in the south and north of Barelli’s palace by Enrico Zucalli and Giovanni Antonio Viscardi and were connected with the centre pavilion by two gallery wings. In 1716, Joseph Effner redesigned the facade of the centre pavilion in French Baroque style with pilasters. Later, the south section of the palace was further extended to build the court stables (1719). For the sake of balance, the orangery building was added to the north which was only completed in 1758. Finally, Nymphenburg Palace was completed with a grand circle (the Schlossrondell) of Baroque mansions (the so-called Kavaliershäuschen – cavalier’s lodges) erected under Maximilian Emanuel’s son Holy Roman Emperor Charles VII Albert. In 1795, Charles Theodore, Elector of Bavaria ordered the widening of the galleries on the park side. In 1826, under King Ludwig I of Bavaria, his architect Leo von Klenze removed the gables of the main pavilion with the Electoral coat of arms and created an attic style decoration directly under the roof instead.   read more…

Elmau Palace in Bavaria

November 6th, 2017 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Hotels, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

© Schloss Elmau/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Schloss Elmau/cc-by-sa-3.0

Schloss Elmau, built by the architect Carl Sattler in the style of Reformarchitektur during WW1 between 1914 and 1916, is a two-story listed monument with hipped roof, tower and porch, situated between Garmisch-Partenkirchen and Mittenwald in Bavaria. It lies at the foot of the Wetterstein mountains in a Naturschutzgebiet (nature reserve), belonging to the Krün municipality. The land was purchased in 1912 by the Lutheran theologian Johannes Müller (1864-1949), brother-in-law of Carl Sattler, who wrote articles now widely considered as Anti-Judaism. Prince Maximilian of Baden, Reichskanzler in 1918, and the Lutheran theologian Adolf von Harnack were close friends. Financier of the building was Elsa Gräfin Waldersee, née Haniel. There were eleven children, including Ingrid, Bernhard and Sieglinde.   read more…

500 years German Beer Purity Law

March 14th, 2016 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Munich beer purity law from 1487 © Evergreen68/cc-by-sa-3.0

Munich beer purity law from 1487 © Evergreen68/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Reinheitsgebot, sometimes called the “German Beer Purity Law” in English, is the collective name for a series of regulations limiting the ingredients in beer in Germany and its predecessor states. The most well-known version of the law was adopted in Bavaria in 1516, but similar regulations predate the Bavarian order, and modern regulations also significantly differ from the 1516 Bavarian version. The most influential predecessor of the modern Reinheitsgebot was a law first adopted in the duchy of Munich in 1487. After Bavaria was reunited, the Munich law was adopted across the entirety of Bavaria on April 23, 1516. As Germany unified, Bavaria pushed for adoption of this law on a national basis. According to the 1516 Bavarian law, the only ingredients that could be used in the production of beer were water, barley and hops. The 1516 Bavarian law set the price of beer (depending on the time of year and type of beer), limited the profits made by innkeepers, and made confiscation the penalty for making impure beer.   read more…

Oberpollinger in München

December 1st, 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, House of the Month

© M(e)ister Eiskalt/cc-by-sa-4.0

© M(e)ister Eiskalt/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Oberpollinger is a known department store in Neuhauser Strasse in Munich. It is run by the The KaDeWe Group GmbH and is the largest by area department store in southern Germany. The building was built in 1905 by Max Littmann in the style of historicism, in the form of Neo-Renaissance and is a listed building.   read more…

The Villa Wahnfried in Bayreuth

November 28th, 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

© Dickbauch~commonswiki/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Dickbauch~commonswiki/cc-by-sa-3.0

Wahnfried was the name given by Richard Wagner to his villa in Bayreuth. The name is a German compound of Wahn (delusion, madness) and Fried(e), (peace, freedom). According to Richard Wagner’s wife Cosima the name came to mind after visiting the picturesque town of Wahnfried in Hesse.   read more…

Hotel Bayerischer Hof in Munich

October 21st, 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Hotels

Hotel Bayerischer Hof © Mattes

Hotel Bayerischer Hof © Mattes

The Bayerischer Hof on Promenadeplatz in the northwestern part of Munich is a five-star Grand Hotel. Built in 1841, it remains a destination for celebrities and guests of state in Munich. The hotel was erected in 1841 on behalf of Joseph Anton von Maffei according to plans by Friedrich von Gärtner. It initially had about 100 rooms and two halls. Some of its renowned guests included Empress Elisabeth of Austria and Sigmund Freud. In 1897 the Hotel was purchased for 2,850,000 Mark by Mark Hermann Volkhardt, who converted the facade to its historicism style. Performances in the grand ballroom at this time were made by artists such as Enrico Caruso along with many others. After the reconstruction period in 1924, the Bayerischer Hof was the largest hotel in Europe. During the Second World War the building suffered heavy damage, but was rebuilt after the war.   read more…

Mittenwald in Upper Bavaria

October 11th, 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Mittenwald and Lake Lautersee © Kogo

Mittenwald and Lake Lautersee © Kogo

Mittenwald is a municipality in the district of Garmisch-Partenkirchen with 7,500 inhabitans, in Bavaria. Mittenwald is located approx. 16 kilometers to the south-east of Garmisch-Partenkirchen. It is situated in the Valley of the River Isar, on the northern foothills of the Alps, on the route between the old banking and commercial centre of Augsburg, to the north, and Innsbruck to the south-east, beyond which is the Brenner Pass and the route to Lombardy, another region with a rich commercial past and present. Mittenwald is famous for the manufacture of violins, violas and cellos which began in the mid-17th century by the Klotz family of violin makers, and has been a popular stop with tourists since the boom in motorized tourism began in the 1930s.   read more…

Walhalla memorial, high above the Danube River

October 10th, 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

© Ingo Steinbach/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Ingo Steinbach/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Walhalla is a hall of fame that honors laudable and distinguished people, famous personalities in German history – politicians, sovereigns, scientists and artists of the “German tongue“. The hall is housed in a neo-classical building above the Danube River, east of Regensburg, in Bavaria. The Walhalla is named for Valhalla of Norse mythology. It was conceived in 1807 by Crown Prince Ludwig, who built it upon ascending the throne of Bavaria as King Ludwig I. Construction took place between 1830 and 1842, under the supervision of architect Leo von Klenze. The memorial displays some 65 plaques and 130 busts of persons, covering 2,000 years of history – the earliest person honored is Arminius, victor at the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest (9 AD).   read more…

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