Faberge Museum Private Guided Tour
St. Petersburg, Russia
- A clutch of incomparable eggs: Faberge's intricate jeweled and enameled creations, each a one-of-a-kind masterwork with surprise elements hidden inside, are a rare delight to view. And only there can you see them gathered in such a range of designs, including the very first – and last – eggs crafted for the Romanov family.
- A trove of other treasures: The museum's 4,000-piece collection – highlighted by some 1,500 works that show off Faberge's genius at all things lustrous – also includes jewelry, icons, silverwork, and enamel paintings produced by Russia's masters of decorative and applied arts during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
- Shuvalov Palace: With its opulent marble staircase, parquet floors, and upholstered walls, this painstakingly restored neoclassical palace along the Fontanka River makes the perfect setting for all these jewels.
- Small group = more personal: Share your experience with only people you know; enjoy the luxury of deeper interaction with your guide and a more flexible itinerary.
About This St. Petersburg Tour
When the Faberge Museum opened in 2013, after millions of dollars and a decade of time spent scouring the world to assemble its contents, you could almost hear St. Petersburg's collective sigh of satisfaction. This was to be a homecoming of epic proportions.
Faberge's fabled eggs had, after all, been crafted there – the first one hatched in 1885, as a gift commissioned by Emperor Alexander III for his wife, Empress Maria, in celebration of Easter and their 20th anniversary.
Known as the Hen Egg, its opaque white enameled "shell" opens to reveal its first surprise – a matte golden yolk. This is turn opens to reveal a multicolored gold hen, designed to contain a miniature diamond crown adorned with a ruby pendant.
But like so much of Russia's Imperial wealth, those tiniest elements of the Hen Egg are lost to history. That's no surprise, since after the 1918 Russian Revolution and massacre of the Romanovs, the 50 Faberge eggs that had been exchanged as loving gifts among them for decades were scattered worldwide, many ending up in private collections.
This makes it all the more satisfying to know that so many of these Faberge dazzlers have now been reunited for posterity, in the city they first hailed from.
The museum's nine Imperial eggs were bought from the Forbes family for $100 million in 2004 by Vikto Vekselberg, one of Russia’s richest men. Story goes that Vekselberg bought the lot before it even had time to hit the auction house floor; he had a vision for the museum and wasn't taking any chances.
Presented together with another six non-Imperial Faberge masterworks, it's a 15-egg assemblage unlikely to ever be beaten.
Talk about a golden egg
Of the 50 Imperial eggs Faberge made, 43 are known to have survived: nine at this museum, 10 in Moscow, five at a Virginia fine arts museum, three in Queen Elizabeth's hands, and 16 more in assorted museums and collections. That still leaves seven of these beauties unaccounted for. Be on the lookout at flea markets: The last one found was almost sold for scrap gold value by an antique dealer. Eventually he learned he was sitting on a cool $27-million treasure, having seen a photo in a British newspaper.
Arriving by cruise ship? A representative will meet you near the pier. Staying in hotel? Your guide will be waiting in the lobby. Make sure you specify the name of your cruise ship or hotel at check out. At the meeting time, look for our logo sign. Please bring a printed copy of your voucher.
Bring small coins for the bathroom. Take a light jacket or rain coat for the weather.
This tour is suitable for travelers with limited mobility, able to get in and out of the coach without assistance. It is not fully wheelchair accessible. Participation in any activity at any stop is at each person's discretion.
Cultural, Walking Tour, Private Tour
We have different size vehicles to accommodate your group. Don't see the size vehicle you need? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for further assistance.
Tour Participation Requirements
This experience is rated moderate. Full participation may require extended periods of walking over even and uneven surfaces, steep terrain and/or water activity in a slight current. There may be steps, inclines, cobblestone surfaces, and extended periods of standing. Participants with physical limitations should take this into account.
Suitable for all ages.
Non-refundable if canceled within 7 days of requested services.
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