Pictured is the grand staircase of the Catherine Palace in 1944 as it was found by Soviet Forces after the retreat of the Nazi occupiers. Today it has been restored, as has much of the immense Catherine Palace.
Tsarskoe Selo: a village outside of St. Petersburg that the Romanov Tsars and Empresses loved to call home, containing amongst its buildings the Catherine and Alexander Palaces. IMAGE: Catherine Palace, Tsarskoye Selo, Russia
Alexander Palace ~ Tsarskoye Selo (Russian: Ца́рское Село́; "Tsar's Village") the town containing a former Russian residence of the imperial family + visiting nobility, 15 mi south from Saint Petersburg. Currently, there are two imperial palaces: the baroque Catherine Palace with the adjacent Catherine Park and the neoclassical Alexander Palace with the adjacent Alexander Park.