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Among the many architectural monuments in Nevsky Prospekt, one of the most noticeable is the Beloselsky-Belozersky Palace. It was built by Andrei Stackenschneider, a famous architect of the Nicholas I epoch, in 1848. The building’s design was submitted to the Emperor, and he approved it. The completed palace excited the contemporaries. The reviews praised it as a “magnificent palazzo” and “sui generis excellence,” saying that Stackenschneider “made a real artistic feat.”
The Palace of Princes Beloselsky-Belozersky was the last private palace built in Nevsky Prospekt in the 19th century. The palace has retained original interiors, among which the state rooms in the 2nd storey stand out: the Oak Hall (former library) that was used as the minor concert hall, Picture Gallery, Dining Hall, Beige Parlor, Mirror (ball) Room with admirable acoustics since it was initially intended for concerts and is still used for this purpose, and Gold Crimson Parlor. All these and other rooms contain the artistic decoration of the middle and late 19th century: fireplaces, lighting fixtures, plasterwork, pictures, mirrors, furniture, and much more. The palace belonged to relatives of Nicholas II. It was here that Nicholas and Alexandra, the last Czar and Czarina of the Romanov dynasty, first met and made acquaintance.
The St. Petersburg State Symphony Orchestra started performing in the Mirror Room of the Beloselsky-Belozersky Palace in 1988, and soon regained its status of one of the city’s best venues. The magnificent interiors go along with harmonic perception of art, and the fantastic acoustics enable the SPSSO musicians to demonstrate their remarkable abilities to the full. Very popular with St. Petersburg’s residents and guests are the Sunday matinee subscriptions of the orchestra. They feature excellent conductors and soloists, and all programs are commented by St. Petersburg’s best musicologists.