The Renaissance Castle Častolovice is located 10 km southwest of Rychnov nad Kněžnou and was returned to Diana Phipps née Sternberg in the restitutions in 1992. After returning to Bohemia Diana Phipps began to restore and improve the castle as well as the park. Visitors have the opportunity to see the castle exposition, visit the castle gallery, gift shop and enjoy refreshments in the courtyard café. In the adjacent English landscape park there is a rose and water garden, a castle menagerie, an enclosure with white fallow deer, a children’s playground and the Gloriet gazebo.
The history of the Castle Častolovice dates back to the 13th century, when a moated manor house, whose first known owners were the lords of Častolovice, stood here. Later, the estate belonged to various local owners including King Jiří of Poděbrad and Kunštát. In 1588 Častolovice came into the possession of the Oppersdorf family, who rebuilt the moated manor house into a Renaissance castle. In 1694 Častolovice was bought by the High Burgrave of Prague Oldřich Adolf Vratislav, Count Sternberg. Since then the estate belonged to the Sternberg family until 1940, when everything passed under German enforced administration, forcing the Sternberg family not only to leave the castle, but also the whole estate.
After World War II Count Leopold Sternberg, his wife Cecilia and their daughter Diana returned to the castle in Častolovice. Unfortunately, in 1948 the castle was confiscated by the Communist state and the Sternberg family had to leave not only the castle, but the country as well. They emigrated first to the USA and then to Jamaica, where Leopold Sternberg died in 1957.
In 1992, on the basis of the restitution laws, the family property, including castles in Častolovice and Zásmuky, was returned to his daughter Diana Phipps-Sternberg. The castle exposition, accessible to the public, includes the former representative and residential areas with a unique collection of paintings amassed by the Sternbergs over more than 300 years. This includes paintings by Škréta, Teniers, Schönfeld and other masters of the Baroque. In the Knights‘ Hall, which is one of the largest Renaissance halls in Bohemia, the ceiling cassettes depict scenes from the Old Testament. The walls of this hall are lined with historical portraits of the Sternberg family. The English landscape garden covering an area of 42 hectares was built in the 19th century. The park includes a deer preserve with white fallow deer and a castle menagerie, where children and adults can view, stroke and feed various types of domestic and foreign animals. Ostriches live in the castle menagerie as well as emus and rheas, llamas, Shetland ponies, donkeys, goats, sheep and pigs. In the aviary various species of parrots, pheasants, pigeons, guinea fowl and peacocks fly freely and there are miniature rabbits, too.
Wedding ceremonies, receptions, family or corporate celebrations and other cultural events take place at the castle. The castle and park are wheelchair accessible. Parking for cars is provided in two parking lots close to the castle.
Častolovice - Castle
- Adress: Masarykova 1, 517 50 Častolovice
- GSM: +420 732 832 442
- Phone: +420 494 323 646
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.zamek-castolovice.cz