Het Loo – Home of William & Mary
The Palace is quite easily reached from Amsterdam via train to Apeldoorn, then a short, comfortable bus ride to the palace. From there, one walks into a heavily-forested area, with a path leading up to the ticket office. I met my friend, writer Patric Aalders here with my husband and we all went towards the palace from there.
We passed a very large stable and continued under the trees until we came to the front of the beautiful building. As we entered, Patric pointed out the beautiful cafeteria area on the left. We then went to see the House of Orange exhibition, which had a few interesting objects pertaining to William & Mary’s time there.
The interior of the house is lovely, but it is not on the scale of Versailles or Hampton Court – this palace felt very much like Kensington Palace – charming and comfortable. It was made this way because it was a house to be lived in and enjoyed – not for ostentatious reasons. I was not allowed to take photos inside, and I’m sorry for this as it was beautiful.
The rooms were beautiful and I could truly see how beloved it was to both William and Mary. William’s apartments were more like the man – plain and to the point, whereas Mary’s apartments were more romantic and feminine, as she was. Just as it is in Hampton Court, there was a great deal of Mary’s favourite blue and white Delftware on display. She was an avid collector to say the least. My gosh did she have some exquisite taste.
This is the lovely grotto where Mary made jam (she was an excellent homemaker from all accounts). It’s been filled with the blue-and-white ware she was ever so fond of.
The gardens of Paleis Het Loo were restored to a 17th century style in the 1970s – and it’s absolutely beautiful. This is definitely my kind of garden – elegant, formal parterres – which William and Mary would have loved! Here are photos of the gardens – we were very lucky with the weather – beaming sunshine!
I had a great time! Het Loo is truly a fascinating, beautiful palace, with friendly staff – including my contact there Renske. I hope to go back again someday as it was so wonderful.