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Hunting palace and summer residence with glorious views

Solitude Palace

Solitude Palace Stuttgart, aerial view. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Achim Mende
A magical hunting lodge and pleasure palace

The palace and

the garden

Solitude Palace has an idyllic location: It is a popular destination west of Stuttgart and captivates visitors with its spectacular view. As the most demanding and personal of Duke Carl Eugen von Württemberg's creations, it has lost none of its charm.

View of the garden side of Solitude Palace, built by Duke Carl Eugen. Image: Landesmedienzentrum Baden-Württemberg, Joachim Feist

The duke was personally involved in the construction of Solitude Palace.

The new construction project

When the construction of Monrepos Lakeside Palace in Ludwigsburg came to a halt, Carl Eugen lost interest in it and turned to a new construction project. On the ducal hunting grounds, on the forested heights west of Stuttgart, he initially intended to build a simple hunting lodge, a stylish retreat. The building received its characteristic French name"Solitude." Planning began in 1763 and the duke himself played a significant role.

Visitors view the magnificent rooms of Solitude Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Niels Schubert

Worth a visit: the magnificent palace rooms.

A place for ducal displays of power

The duke changed his mind again, and the construction project took on a new dimension: The primary palace and its many outbuildings, the avenues, and the zoo and pleasure gardens emerged. The stately ensemble made Solitude Palace a highly original pleasure palace and a royal display of power for official receptions and pompous festivities. Seven years after the foundation was laid, architects Johann Friedrich Weyhing and Philippe de La Guêpière completed construction.

A lost garden paradise

Originally, Solitude Palace was surrounded by an unequaled and extremely original and expansive Baroque garden. Court society enjoyed pleasant amusements in the hedge labyrinth, orangery, theater, and a "pleasure lake." In the nearby forests, clear avenues and lines of sight were ideal prerequisites for the ducal hunt, which Carl Eugen loved deeply and staged often.

 

Copper engraving of a topographical map of Solitude Palace from 1784. Image: Landesmedienzentrum Baden-Württemberg, Robert Brothner

An extensive garden once surrounded the palace.

Aerial view of Solitude Palace with administrative building and cavalier building. Image: Achim Mende

An ensemble of buildings: Solitude Palace.

A variable history

Later dukes and kings of Württemberg also treasured Solitude Palace as a retreat with exquisite views, enchanting forests, and the magnificent palace rooms. Unfortunately, the high-maintenance gardens were abandoned bit by bit beginning in 1770.

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