ALEXANDRU IOAN CUZA Palace
Within MOLDOVA National Museum Complex
”Al. I. Cuza” Palace of Ruginoasa has reopened its gates for the public.
”Alexandru Ioan Cuza” Palace of Ruginoasa was built during the 1820s by treasurer Sandulache Sturdza, who asked Viennese architect Johan Freiwald to build a luxurious residence on the place inherited from his ancestors . The initial style was the neoclassic, preserved by the residence chapel. In 1847, chancellor Costache Sturdza “transforms the house of Ruginoasa according to the gothic style architecture”, the architect employed for this work being Johan Brandel. In this form, the palace was finalized in 1855. On January 13, 1862, Prince Alexandru Ioan Cuza bought the domain of Ruginoasa against the price of 52.011 gold coins. After he renounced to the residence of Ia┼či, on the nowadays L─âpu┼čneanu street, (building which now hosts the Museum of the Union), Ruginoasa remained the main residence in Moldavia of the Prince of the Union. A rather close kinship degree existed between sellers and buyers, as Princess Elena Cuza was born Rosetti. Costache Sturdza, the owner of Ruginosa, had married his only daughter to Elena Cuza’s uncle, Alecu Sturdza of Micl─âu┼čeni.
Princess Elena took care of the rearranging of the new residence. In November 1863, she ordered the furniture items to one of the most famous specialized companies in Paris, House P. Mazaroz Ribaillier. Each room was furnished in a different style, according to the fashion of the epoch of Napoleon III. The rooms of the palace contained furniture items of neo-gothic style, in line with the architecture of the building, as well as pieces in “Rochefoucault” style. The large reception hall was furnished in “Louis XV” style, and the Princess Elena’s bedroom in “Renaissance” style. Ruginoasa was Elena Cuza’s paradise. She would often write to her mother, in Sole┼čti (Vaslui), that it was the only place where she felt happy and comfortable.
Destroyed during World War II, the palace reacquired its initial glow and specific charm after 1978, when it was restored. In 1982, the “Al. I. Cuza” memorial museum was opened in this edifice, according to the technological means of the period. During the period 2008-2012, the edifice was restored and the museum rearranged, based on a series of original documents, such as: «Commande de son Altesse,
Starting from such information, the current display recreates as truly as possible the atmosphere of Prince Alexandru Ioan Cuza’s residence of Ruginoasa, integrating up-to-date technological means, such as a holographic projection of Prince Cuza and an interactive table providing additional information to visitors in a dynamic and user-friendly manner.