The Mirabell Palace and the Marble Hall - precious jewels
Prince-Archbishop Franz Anton von Harrach had Mirabell Palace redesigned by the famous baroque architect, Lukas von Hildebrandt, from 1721 to 1727, integrating the individual buildings into a self-contained complex. The palace was damaged by the great fire that swept through the city on April 30, 1818. A number of frescoes - including those by Johann Michael Rottmayr and Gaetano Fanti - fell victim to the flames. The grand marble staircase that led into the palace and the marble hall survived unscathed.
Mirabell Palace owes its present, elegant appearance to Peter de Nobile, the court's architectural consultant and director of the Vienna School of Architecture. Details such as the edging of the windows, the capitals and stuccowork bear witness to the palace's former splendor. The masterly staircase by Lukas von Hildebrandt is one of the most precious works of art at Mirabell Palace. Charming putti (cherubs) decorate the marble balustrade; the sculptures in the niches are the work of the famous Georg Raphael Donner and among the finest products of the European baroque. Several scenes from The Sound of Music were recorded here. Maria and the children sing 'Do-Re-Mi' while dancing around the horse fountain and use the steps as a musical scale. The Palace of Mirabell is also a popular location for weddings.
The name Mirabell comes from “mirabile” (which means admirable) and “bello” (for beautiful). Once you have visited the Marble Hall and the baroque gardens of this beautiful palace, you will surely agree with this name choice.