Monrepos park

Monrepos mansion is located about 2.5 kilometres north from the Vyborg centre. In old 17th century maps the area was called Gamla Wiiborg (old Vyborg). The more than 300-year-old mansion was known as Lill-Ladugård crown estate, which came into the possession of Charlotte and Peter von Stupish in the 1750s. Charlotte was interested in gardening and eagerly started to plan an English landscape garden. Because of that people started to call the mansion Charlottendahl.

The mansion had its present-day outlook by Baron Ludwig Heinrich von Nicolay. He bought it on 19 August 1788 from Prince of Wurttenberg Friedrich Wilhelm, who had started to use the French name Mon Repos (My Rest) of the mansion in 1785.

During the time of Ludwig Heinrich von Nicolay the main and library buildings of Monrepos mansion were renovated and expanded based on the plans of Italian Restorer Guiseppe Antonio Martinelli. Martinelli influenced the outlook of Monrepos mansion in 1798-1805. Monrepos mansion was owned by the Nicolay family until 1942 when Marie von Nicolay died and was buried in Linnasaari in Ludwigstein. The ownership was transferred to Baron Nicolas von der Pahlen, who was a nephew of Paul Ernst von Nicolay.

Many well-known Monrepos buildings, such as the Temple of Neptune, Maria’s Tower, Sylvia’s Fountain, and the decorative arch bridges were built at the end of the 18th century or at the beginning of the 19th century. Valuable fishes were bred in a ”channel” between the arches. The park was made up in the 1820s and 1830s and it was opened to the public in the middle of the 19th century for weekends only and at the beginning a permit given by the baron was needed for a visit. Väinämöinen statue was broken deliberately. The new Väinämöinen sculpted by Takanen was inaugurated in 1873.

The library building of Monrepos mansion had more than 9000 volumes. Count Paul Ernst von Nicolay gave the volumes to the library of the University of Helsinki for safekeeping in 1915. The library was donated in 1937 on certain conditions.

The number of visitors showed the popularity of Monrepos, for example in 1926 there were more than 10 000 visitors. In summer 1939, the ticket price was 2 marks and especially in the 1930s it was one of the most photographed parks in Finland.