Roman Baths

The romantic Italian-style building ensemble emerged from the collaboration of the architects Karl Friedrich Schinkel and Ludwig Persius. The design of the four buildings and pavilions entirely followed a Roman example, whereby not the practical and functional value dominated, but the builders´ delight taken in experimenting and creating new architecture.
The Romantic ensemble of the Roman Baths forms a picturesque counterpart to the severity of Charlottenhof Palace.

It puts you off to the estate of an Italian mansion, where herms of Dionysus, Pompeiian column fragments, an ancient Centaur Sarcophagus and plots of southern vegetables and lush decorative plants awaken associations of an ideal Italy.

The crown prince and later King Frederick William IV., who was quite talented as a draftsman, delivered countless sketches laying out his ideas for this ensemble. Karl Friedrich Schinkel and Ludwig Persius turned the royal visions into reality, and as of 1829, a series of structures was erected: the Court Gardener’s House, the adjacent pavilion in the design of a Roman podium temple with a pillared portico, the Gardener’s Assistant’s House, the Large Arbor, the Arcade Hall and ultimately the Roman Baths.

However, the Roman Baths are neither intended as the imitation of Roman thermal springs, nor as an ancient mansion. Instead, the crown prince had a new architectural creation erected that drew on an Italian country house in a 15th century style. Even the newly acquired knowledge about building construction in antiquity won through excavations in Herculaneum and Pompeii was playfully and colorfully put into practice in the series of the Atrium, Impluvium, Caldarium, Apodyterium, Viridarium and Billiard Room.

Flat, saddleback roofs, a tower, asymmetrically connected architectural components, pergolas entwined with vine leaves, a terrace with a view across a pond to Charlottenhof Palace, and the landscaped park created by Peter Joseph Lenné, all help to shape the unmistakable, restrained character of Frederick William IV.
Also the great German scholar Alexander von Humboldt resided here during his stays in Potsdam.
 

Opening hours:
10:00 - 17:30
10:00 - 17:30
10:00 - 17:30
10:00 - 17:30
10:00 - 17:30
10:00 - 17:30