Castles and Palaces
Every Castle

Schloss Brühl

Augustusburg and Falkenlust Palaces

Augustusburg is a German Electoral castle, situated 8 km west of the Rhine, halfway between Bonn and Cologne.

Along with the Falkenlust Palace, the complex is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1984.

The troops of Louis XIV destroyed the medieval castle in Brühl in 1689. Elector Joseph Clemens of Cologne decided to rebuild the ruin, and in 1715 his architectural adviser, the Parisian court architect Robert de Cotte, submitted plans for the project.

No work had begun, however, when Joseph Clemens died in 1723. His nephew and successor, Clemens August, immediately took over the project, employing an experienced local architect, Johann Conrad Schlaun.

In his scheme Schlaun incorporated much of the existing fabric. He duplicated the existing north-west tower with another in the south-west and retained the moat around the whole site, creating a C-shaped building that was open to the east.

Construction of the two-storey elevation, set on a one-storey base and capped by a mansard roof, was complete by 1728. Pilasters marked the centres and ends of the wings, and large windows throughout eliminated much of the wall mass, resulting in an exterior that was both monumental and open.

The interiors were done by the Bavarian court architectFrançois de Cuvilliés I. He produced elegant Rococo creations of stucco, including panels with ornamentation that rises above the ceiling coves, and smooth white surfaces.

While Cuvilliés worked inside, the gardener Dominique Girard, a pupil of André Le Nôtre, located a terrace and stair along the south wing, filled in the moat and laid out a formal garden with a central axis that stretches from the terrace into the distant landscape.

Far from the Schloss Augustusburg, Cuvilliés built the Falkenlust Palace (1729–1734), an intimate pavilion connected to the main complex by a long allée. Closer to the castle stood the Chinese House, which did not survive, and a pavilion built to house the porcelain collection.

From 1735 Cuvilliés decorated the centrepieces of the east and west façades, removing the towers that had marked the corners of the latter. He added long galleries to the west, establishing a deep court as a counterpoint to the eastern court of the castle.

By around 1740, when Cuvilliés had returned to Munich, the new interiors, modified façades and landscaped setting had transformed Augustusburg castle into a contemporary Residenz.

Decoration of the castle interiors continued into the 1760s. The alterations and damage that occurred during the 19th and 20th centuries were later corrected by extensive campaigns to restore the castle and its grounds to their 18th-century appearance.

In the second half of the 20th century, due to the proximity of the castle to the then capital Bonn, Augustusburg was used as a reception hall for international state guests.

Augustusburg and Falkenlust Palaces - Visitor Info

The castles in Bruhl are open for visits. All year round many cultural events happen inside the castle’s walls. Augustusburg castle hosts one of Europe’s biggest motorcycle collection.

Every January a big biker meeting takes place at the castle too. Besides the motorcycle museum, visitors can climb to an observation tower, and even sleep in an affordable youth hostel next to the castle.


Schloss Brühl Map

Schloss Augustusburg Address: Schloßstraße 6, 50321 Brühl, Germany. Get help with directions using the map provided bellow:

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 Schloss Brühl Photos

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Augustusburg courtyard Photo © Xavier de Jauréguiberry
 Photos by © Antonio Ponte
  Schloss Augustusburg
  Schloss Augustusburg
  Schloss Augustusburg
  Schloss Augustusburg
Augustusburg interior
Augustusburg interior
Schloss Falkenlust
Falkenlust facade
Falkenlust interior
Falkenlust garden  © Antonio Ponte