The Kuskovo Estate

The Kuskovo Estate’s regular park is one of Moscow’s oldest parks. Both the park and the estate are one of the favourite places to visit for the Muscovites and city visitors. There is a palace, a park, pavilions and alcoves, glass-house and the Kunstkamera Museum, a wild animal show and a hunting-box at the estate’s area. There was a time when a small fleet of row-boats existed at the Kuskovo pond.

The first mention of the Kuskovo dates back to the end of the 16th century when it was known as the Sheremetyev estate. During the reign of the Tsar Michael Fyodorovich (1623-1624) there were a wooden church, a boyars’ court and bondmen houses. The Sheremetyevs had owned the estate for more than three hundred years which is quite unusual for the history of Russian estates. The estate consisted of three parts: the pond and the wild animal show, the French regular park and the main architectural ensemble, the English park named “Guy”. The main building of Pavel Sheremetyev’s estate was the palace where receptions were held.

The palace’s flat ramps ornamented with sphinx figures were designed for the carriages of famous visitors to approach the very entrance of the Palace. The Sheremetyev’s family cipher was installed above the entrance in a triangular gable.
Suites of rooms, which were traditional for 18th century architecture, included parlours, billiards and cards rooms, the dining room, bedrooms, the library and so on. The main room was the White Dancing room with one side facing the garden and the other side covered as a mirror.

The French regular park was decorated by a marble sculpture. It consisted of ponds, pavilions, several glass-houses, a wild beast show, a menagerie (an architecturally arranged house with song-birds) and an open-air theatre. There were about fifty various exotic pavilions, garden labyrinths, fountains, grottos, lift bridges, carousels and many other interesting things. In the period from 1770 and until his death in 1788, Sheremetyev used to arrange grandiose feasts where anyone who felt like it was invited. The number of guests at such celebrations sometimes averaged thirty thousand. The table of events included theatrical performances, boating while listening to a choir singing, fireworks, divertissements, sea parades and carousels. Free-of-charge performances used to be given at the three theatres of the estate.

Following the Revolution of 1917 the estate was nationalised. At the present time there are two museums located at the Kuskovo: the only museum of ceramics in Russia and the estate-museum “Kuskovo”. Tour to Moscow