The restorers working on the restoration of the Amber Chamber in the Catherine Palace in Tsarskoye Selo (Petersburg's suburb) have installed the last amber panels - two big ones, decorated with Florence mosaic, and six narrow panels. A RIA Novosti correspondent was told about it in the press service of the Tsarskoye Selo state museum-reserve.
By May 13th, the restoration of the Amber Chamber will be fully completed. On that day, the Expert Council, which is composed of representatives of the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation, the Tsarskoye Selo state museum and the German firm Ruhrgas, will sign the Act on the Completion of the Work.
On May 31st, the heads of state who will arrive in Petersburg for the jubilee celebrations on the occasion of the 300th anniversary of the city on the Neva, as it is often called, are expected to visit the Amber Chamber in the Catherine Palace.
The official opening of the unique Amber Chamber will take place on June 3rd.
The Amber Chamber, that is, amber panels for the decoration of the main premise, was the gift to Peter the Great from Prussian King Friederich Wilhelm I in 1716. At the time of the reign of Elisabeth in Russia, these amber panels decorated one of the rooms of the Grand Palace in Tsarskoye Selo.
During the Great Patriotic War, the fascist occupants dismantled the amber panels and sent them to Koenigsberg (Eastern Prussia). The fate of the Amber Chamber has not been known so far. All attempts to find it have brought no results.
In 1979, the Council of Ministers of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (RSFSR) took a decision on the restoration of the Amber Chamber. The money for the purpose was allocated from the federal budgets. As many as 7.85 million US dollars were spent in the course of the twenty years. In 1999, the agreement was signed under which the German firm Ruhrgas IG invested 3.5 million American dollars for the completion of the work on the restoration of the Amber Chamber.