Thursday, August 16 2018

VietNamNews

Huế to restore royal palace

Update: August, 06/2018 - 08:00
The hall where King Bảo Đại met the Japanese ambassador in 1945. Photo aavh.org
Viet Nam News

THỪA THIÊN-HUẾ — The central city of Huế has announced plans to restore a palace in the former royal citadel in an attempt to give visitors a glimpse at how the former kings of the Nguyễn Dynasty (1802-1945) lived.

 

The People’s Committee of Thừa Thiên-Huế Province recently approved funding of VNĐ123 billion (US$5.2 million) for the restoration of Kiến Trung Palace inside the dynasty’s Imperial City.

 

It will be the first restoration project to take place at the palace since it was destroyed by Việt Minh troops in 1947 during the war. The Huế Monuments Conservation Centre will oversee the project.

 

The centre’s director Phan Thanh Hải said a plan had been drawn up using old images of the palace.

 

Starting later this year, the restoration project will cover two storeys with three stone stairways carved with dragon designs as well as a dragon embossment on the rooftop. The project is scheduled for completion in 2020.

 

An artist’s image of the restored Kiến Trung Palace. Photo courtesy of Huế Monuments Conservation Centre

In the Imperial City, Kiến Trung Palace stood behind the Thái Hòa (Supreme Harmony) Palace, which served as the main meeting hall for kings and their mandarins.

 

The palace was the home of the dynasty’s last kings, Khải Định and Bảo Đại.

 

The palace was built in a mixture of French, Italian Renaissance and old Vietnamese architectural styles by King Khải Định in 1923. Earlier at the site, there was a pavilion built by King Minh Mạng and later repaired by King Tự Đức and King Duy Tân.

 

King Khải Định drew his last breath at the palace in 1925. His son, King Bảo Đại, lived in it with his first queen Nam Phương. Five of their children were born there, including two princes and three princesses.

 

In March 1945, King Bảo Đại met the Japanese ambassador at the palace to announce Việt Nam’s independence from French colonialism. — VNS

 

 

 

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