Potocki Palace

  • Architecture
  • City center

Fr 11am - 5pm

Sat-Sun 11am - 6pm

Working Hours

The Palace of the Potocki Counts is a real architectural gem of Lviv. This building was built in the last decade of the 19th century as the residence of Alfred Jόzef Potocki. He was an Austrian politician and the emperor’s governor in Galicia. Count Potocki admired France, so his palace in Lviv was built on King Louis XIV's residence.

After the Soviet authorities came to Lviv, the Potocki family left the city and never returned. Research institutes functioned in the palace and since 1975 the City Palace of Celebrations. This building was handed over to the Lviv art gallery in 2002.

Today in the Potocki Palace you can get acquainted with European paintings of the 16th – 18th centuries, but this building is also used as the residence of the President of Ukraine.



Палац Потоцьких. Проект. Фото lvivgallery

Lviv ode to French architecture

The Potocki Palace is an example of late historicism architecture, also known as “baroque classicism”. The second is a combination of design and luxurious decoration. The French architect Louis Duvernier was the author of the project of this building. But the construction was directly managed by local masters. In particular, Julian Tsybulskyi. He worked for the Potocki family in their main residence in Lancsut.  

Палац Потоцьких у Львові. Фото location4film

The palace in Lviv was built for the Potocki family during 1888 – 1890. This is an imposing and majestic building with reliefs, stucco, and images of the Potocki family’s coat of arms inside and outside. However, the customer died earlier, and the work was completed for his son Roman. In addition to the luxurious palace, a complex of outbuildings and a park were built on this territory. Some trees have been preserved from that time to the present day.

To make Lviv newlywed happy

The Potocki family owned the palace in Lviv until 1939. However, the most curious moments in the history of this building have nothing to do with the Potocki family. In 1918 – 1919, this building was a residence for the Barthélemy mission, a representative office of the Council of the Entente countries. In 1919, during city celebrations, the plane of the American pilot Edward Graves crashed into the palace. He performed figures in the air. Repair work lasted until 1931.

After the beginning of Soviet rule in Lviv, the Potocki family representatives, who did not visit the palace often, left the city forever. Their luxurious residence was handed over to the Institute of Geology and Geochemistry. Since 1975 some palace rooms began to be used for the needs of the City Palace of Celebrations (Registry Office).   

Інтер'єр палацу Потоцьких
The interior of the Potocki Palace. Photo: B. Voznytskyi Lviv National Gallery of Art
Інтер'єр Палацу Потоцьких. Фото

Luxurious interiors and unique painting

The former Potocki Palace was handed over to the Lviv Art Gallery in 2002. A museum of European art was opened on these premises. The interiors of the Potocki era were recreated on the ground floor: red, mirror, blue halls, the count’s office, etc. The Potocki took away authentic furniture and paintings from the palace. Therefore, the palace's interiors were filled with exhibits from the gallery’s collections to convey the authentic atmosphere.

These are mostly furniture and paintings from private art collections of well-known collectors of the past. There are also original things here. In particular, there are marble fireplaces, and in one of the rooms, there is an original oak parquet floor. 


Жорж де Латур. Платіж. Фото

The central art exhibition is presented on the first floor. It is organized according to the territorial principle. Moving from room to room, we travel through countries and regions: Ukrainian lands, Austria, Central-Eastern Europe, Italy, Holland, France, and Spain. You can see the works of Italian mannerists, Dutch landscape painters, and marine painters, detailed still life, and many portraits on the first floor.

Among the greatest treasures of the exhibition is Georges de Latour’s painting “The Payment”. It is the only painting of this master in Central-Eastern Europe.

The history of cinema and the metro tram that almost collapsed the palace

An inconspicuous oblong building with history is near the Potocki Palace. Today it is the Museum of Modernism, one of the Lviv Art Gallery branches. This building was erected for the workers who were to build the subway in Lviv. Such a plan existed in Soviet times, and the first station was planned to be built near the Potocki Palace. However, after the start of the work, the soil began to sink around, and there was a rubble threat. That is why the project of the Lviv metro was abandoned.  

The territory of the Potocki Palace and its interiors have repeatedly become an arena for filming movies. This location can be seen in the films “The Attache”, “The Mysterious Diary of Symon Petliura”, “Vladyka Andrei”, “D'Artagnan and Three Musketeers”, etc. Even on the territory of the Potocki Palace, you can see a park of miniatures – reduced copies of fortresses from various parts of Ukraine. 

Музей Модернізму у Львові
The Museum of Modernism. Photo: Heritage Bureau

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