HISTORY OF THE PALACE BUILDING
The palace was being built as a summer residence of the prominent Russian statesman, Governor-General of the Novorossiysk Territory, M.S. Vorontsov (1782-1856).
The author of the Vorontsov's Palace project is an English architect Edward Blore (1789-1879).
Ardour for the ancient monuments, their study and restoration played an important role in the development of English romanticism in the first half of XIX century. Blore devoted himself to this activity in his young days. Later on he was a court architect of George IV, then Queen Victoria. He owned projects of the Westminster Abbey, a part of the facade of the Buckingham Palace, some farmstead buildings, both in the continent and in the former British colony of Australia. But most independently and fully his gift revealed in the Alupka Palace project.
Blore didn’t come to Alupka, but he might have been well aware of the lay of land.
The palace complex consisting of five buildings resembles a countryside aristocratic residence of Elizabeth Tudor period.
Construction of the palace began with a dining hall (1830 - 1834 gg.). The central building was built in 1831 - 1837 years. In 1841 - 1842 years the billiard hall was added to the dining hall. In 1838 - 1844 years guest building, the eastern outbuildings, all palace towers, pentagon of commercial buildings were being built, the front yard was arranging. The library building was built the last(1842 - 1846 gg.).
Work of quit-rent serfs from the Vladimir and Moscow Province was mainly used on the construction of the palace. These were hereditary masons and stone-cutters, passing on from one generation to another the art of construction and relief decoration of magnificent white-stone cathedrals.
The basic building material - diabase of magma origin, greenish-gray color to match the color of the mountains and evergreen vegetation - was taken from natural placers in Alupka. Even diabase rock served as a part of the foundation of the palace. Diabase was carefully polished for interior decoration.
The largest volume of excavations was carried out from 1840 to 1848 with the help of soldiers of field engineer battalion in the construction of terraces of the park in front of the south facade.
In summer 1848, on the central staircase leading to the main entrance sculptural figures of lions which were made in the workshop of Italian sculptor Giovanni Bonnani were installed. The lion's terrace has completed the construction and decoration of the palace ensemble.