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Queluz, a fairy tale palace filled with real life drama

Jules Verne Times Two

Flamboyant. Extravagant. Frivolous. Once called a “very expensive birthday cake”, this 18th century Rococo summer palace reflected the carefree lifestyle of the Portuguese monarchy of the time, inebriated by the gold and riches brought from Brazil. But things would soon take a turn to the worse, with the Queluz Palace playing a central role. A dead King, a mad Queen, an invading Napoleon, a fleeing royal family and a ruler that would come back to die in the same bed where he had been born.

The palace was never meant to be an official residence as, at the time, Queluz stood quite far from the hustle and bustle of Lisbon. In 1777, Queen Maria and her husband King Pedro III ascended to the throne and dismissed Marquis of Pombal, who had been de facto running the country. Weary from the affairs of the state, the monarchs would often use the Queluz summer palace as a…

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