Saturday, 25 August 2012


One day we went to the Palace of Het Loo (pronounced Het Low) which is more like a Stately Home to us in Britain. The first buildings you come to are the Stables.  The building shown here houses various carriages including the Royal hearse, draped in white, other carriages and coachmens' uniforms. The flooring is made of wooden blocks to deaden the noise of  hooves and stop the horses from slipping. In the left hand building are numerous stalls, all clean and tidy.
I don't know what the box is in the front, please don't ask! There are more stalls on the other side of the space where we entered the stables then on into displays of harness, royal cars and more uniforms.
The Palace is along a tree lined walk with plenty of seats so we had our packed lunch here - less to carry! It dates from the 17th Century (not our lunch) and, as you'd expect, has furnishings, pictures, textiles and plenty of attendants in the rooms. Thank goodness for the small lifts which took us up to all the floors.
It was the home of William and his wife, Mary, daughter of James II, but when William became King of England and assumed the title of William III and his wife, that of Mary II, they moved to England. We probably know him better as William of Orange. Did you ever wonder why Dutch National teams have an orange uniform? It was a bit disconcerting being at waist height and, as is usual, there were blinds at the windows to save the fabrics disintegrating and bleaching in the sunlight. I rather liked this fireback which, presumably, shows William.
We have these cut out figures in English houses, too, and I can't remember what their purpose was - can you?  There was a girl figure on the other side of the fireplace.
The attendant suggested I didn't climb the 83 steps to the roof so Jonathan took photos for me from there so as to get a good idea of the layout. Very formal planting, plenty of fountains and no rubbish!
This lady is the Fountain of Venus.
After all that exertion (not on my part) we went for a cuppa of tea or coffee and a slice of apple tart, a favourite on any Dutch cafe/restaurant menu. I took this opportunity to take a photo of Teresa, just by coincidence framed against what appeared to be a zinnia tree! The colour went well with her hair, too.
and Jonathan, with his trusty camera at the ready.
Then a drive home along fast straight roads until another trip tomorrow.


Kath said...

lovely photos. I was thinking that formal garden must take a huge amount of maintenance, snip, snip, snip...

Sylve said...

And a hands and knees job, too, probably!

Bernard said...

In a lot of English Houses, usually National Trust, there are these screens, which I was led to believe, were there to shield the glare of the fire, from the ladies of fair complexion, as they worked on their delicate embroidery.
Could these be a Dutch equivalent?

Sylve said...

Hi Bernard, I've got back to you at last. I wasn't too sure about the screens ( I think those you mentioned were pole screens from 19th century) so looked on V & A website. Those cutouts are called dummy boards, used as house decoration or put on staircases to surprise visitors.