1720-1723, architect J. Braunstein
The elegant two-story palace "Marly", is the main sight of the western part of the Lower park. It received its name, similarly with the residence of the French king Louis XIV, "Marly-le-Roi", that was visited by Peter I, in 1717.
The palace is located at the border of the western part of the Lower park. It is standing on the artificial viaduct between the Sectoral and the Large Marly ponds, used for fish breeding since Peter I's time. This tradition lives on in our days - during specific hours, the fish is fed being called by the ring of a bell. The Marly palace plays an important role in the general layout of the Lower Park. There are three beam alleys, diverging from the eastern bank of the Marly pond - Marly, Birch and Maliban. They cross the whole park from west to east, and connect the palace with other main constructions of the Peterhof ensemble.
An elegant silhouette of the palace seems soaring in the air, reflecting in the mirror expanse of the ponds. Its beauty is not in its richness and grandeur, but in its exceptionally successful architectural proportions and simple, but exquisite finish. It was originally intended, that the palace should be a single-story building, but when the construction was brought to the roof level, Peter I ordered to build a second floor, as it became evident that its proportions did not match to the size of the Great pond.
Its interior design is relatively modest, the palace does not have a traditional grand hall. A new method of planning was used in the construction of "Marly": the first corridor system appeared, when different rooms would be adjacent to the central axis of the corridor. The first floor is occupied by the Kitchen, Pantry, large Front hall, Cavaliers' room, Bedroom and the small Plane-tree study, featuring the particular beauty of its finish. All its walls are covered with plane tree, and the three portraits of Peter I's children, are used as picturesque inserts: the companion portrait of Elizabeth and Anna and the portraits of Peter and Alexei. A staircase with openwork handrails, leads onto the first floor, where the Dressing-room, Bathroom, Sitting room with the Small corner room, Dining room, Oak study and the Library, that used to keep the books on mathematics, park construction, fortification, marine subjects and many other, are located. Today, the exposition of the Marly library includes 69 books.
Since the moment of its construction, "Marly" was used as a guest house for accommodation of the nobles and the members of the imperial family. Catherine I used to stay in "Marly", her older daughter Anna Petrovna with her husband, the Duke of Holstein, lived here for some time. The French ambassador J. Chetardy stayed in "Marly", Nicholas I was resting and having tea here with Alexandra Feodorovna and other representatives of Romanov's family, as well as their distinguished guests.
Soon after completion of the construction, the palace started to turn into a memorial museum of Peter I. The Tsar's personal belongings: clothes, objects connected with his name, tableware, diplomatic gifts and the artwork of his own collection, were kept here.
In current time, among the personal items of Peter presented in the palace, there are: cloth japancho-coat, two flasks of brown glass brought by him from Spa town, damasks from colored glass with signets "Danzig" and "London". The basis of the museum collection, is comprised of the paintings of Adam Silo, Abraham Storck, Pietro Belotti and other artists.
Being destroyed during the Second World War, the palace was reconstructed by the architects, E.V. Kazanskaya and A.E. Gessen. The archival materials and the prewar photographs, helped to recreate the appearance and the interior of the palace. It re-opened to visitors, in 1982.