Peleș Castle

Peleșului 2 Alee, Sinaia, Prahova County

Peleș Castle was built at the initiative of the first King of Romania, Carol I, outside the perimeter of the commune of Podul Neagului, which received the name of Sinaia in 1874, at the initiative of the sovereign. Between 1873 and 1875, the foundation of Peleş Castle was built, and the ceremony of laying the foundation stone of the residence took place in a festive setting on August 10/22, 1875. The management of the works was entrusted to the German architect, Johannes Schultz, who elaborated the plans of the castle in its first construction phase (1879-1883). In 1894, the Czech architect Karel Liman was appointed to lead the works. Peleş Castle served King Charles I as a summer residence, endowed with political, cultural and symbolic functions. After 1914, the Peleş castle continued to exercise its function of representation and museum. Until 1947, it becomes a royal space for official visits or hosts military ceremonies. The most important event organized in Sinaia and hosted by the Peles Castle until the abdication of King Mihai, in December 1947, was related to the celebration of the castle's half-centenary in 1933 by King Carol II (1930-1940).
Between January and March 1948, the castle is closed by order of the communist authorities, and the heritage assets are inventoried. Most of the collections of paintings, furniture, textiles, pieces of decorative art and books were transferred to the Art Museum in the capital. From May of the same year, other pieces entered the custody of different cultural institutions in the big cities of Romania, Bucharest, Brasov, Sibiu, etc. From 1953, the castle becomes a National Museum, open to the general public, while the other buildings located on the Peleş estate will become creative and rest homes for writers, musicologists and plastic artists approved by the communist regime. Two decades later, in 1975, the castle is closed. Simultaneously with the massive restoration works, the castle hosted a series of visits by heads of state until 1989. From 1990, respectively 1993 and until today, the Peleş and Pelişor castles have been reopened for visiting, and together with the entire Peleş domain, they re-entered the property of King Mihai I in 2007, but continue to be administered by the Romanian state.