10-year anniversary of the CITY PALACE
After around five years of renovation work the CITY PALACE of the Princely Family of Liechtenstein has appeared in all its former glory since April 2013. An insight into an extensive renovation and preservation of monuments at the highest level.
“It was very important to us to renovate the CITY PALACE, which has belonged to our family since 1694. I feel that we have a certain obligation to preserve it for posterity. Elaborate detailed work has been carried out to bring the palace up to modern standards, whilst preserving all of its historic charm. Now we are delighted to be able to hire the house out for wonderful events and to bring it back to life with guided tours,” explained the owner, HSH Prince Hans-Adam II von und zu Liechtenstein, after the renovation in 2013.
Before the renovation work began in 2008, subsidence and war damage had left the CITY PALACE in such a bad state that had only been superficially remedied, that the first thing that was necessary was to introduce a steel skeleton to support the structure. Only then could the restoration work finally begin, relying heavily on the use of authentic materials and the building techniques of the original period. Thus, for example, any damage to the world-famous Thonet flooring was repaired through painstaking handcrafted intarsia work. To permanently preserve the delicate floor, the specific area in the event rooms has been covered with an imitation flooring, a costly and time-consuming undertaking whereby photographs were taken of each square metre of magnificent patterning, the colours harmonized and the end result then printed on wooden panels. Another example for the extensive renovation: In order to replicate individual silk wallhangings, a loom was specially adapted, which was capable of weaving more than 20,000 warp threads. The highly demanding nature of the restoration also explains the high number of staff employed during the renovation works: “On average there were 200 to 250 people on the site per day, and on peak days up to 500.", architect Prof. Manfred Wehdorn explained in 2013.
The restoration should be seen as an important example of the preservation of monuments in Vienna, where particular emphasis is placed on Alterswert (the value of aging and the importance of marks of usage). For that reason the gilding was only replaced where replenishment was necessary, otherwise the approximately 170-year-old gilding was merely cleaned. A total of 1.5 kilograms (approx. 150,000 pieces) of gold leaf were used, taking around 54,000 working hours to apply.
FACTS & FIGURES ON THE PRESERVATION OF MONUMENTS AND RESTORATION
approximately 150,000 sheets of gold leaf with a total weight of around 1.5 kg
around 54,000 working hours spent on restoring the gilding
restoration and repair of around 880 m² of inlayed parquet flooring and 1,850 m² of panel parquet
restoration of 4 large bronze chandeliers and 20 crystal chandeliers
stocking the chandeliers with 1,200 LED candles
Friday, May 12 2023