| Thai Hoa Palace opens to visitors on the occasion of the Lunar New Year of the Dragon 2024. Photo: Nguyen Phong
With a history of more than 200 years, Thai Hoa Palace is the most important palace in the area of Hue Imperial Citadel. This is also the coronation place of 13 Emperors of the Nguyen Dynasty, from Emperor Gia Long to Emperor Bao Dai.
The construction of Thai Hoa Palace was started by Emperor Gia Long in February 1805 and completed in October of the same year. This palace was the venue to organize important ceremonies such as the Coronation ceremony (ascension to the throne), the Van Tho ceremony (the king's birthday), the Tu tuan or Ngu tuan dai khanh tiet ceremony (to celebrate the Emperor’s longevity), and the Hung quoc khanh niem ceremony (the National Day). It was also a place to welcome envoys of other countries and carry out diplomatic rituals.
| After 3 years of restoration, more than 70% of the categories are now completed. Photo: Nguyen Phong
Experiencing many incidents and the effects of weather, Thai Hoa Palace has been seriously degraded. In 2021, the Government has allocated a budget of VND 128 billion to urgently restore this building. The project has a total area of 7,100 square meters, of which Thai Hoa Palace campus is 4,851 square meters, Thai Hoa Palace is 1,440 square meters, and Dai Trieu Nghi yard is 1,640 square meters. After three years of restoration, more than 70% of the categories are now completed, the roof structures and decorative patterns are also basically completed.
| The roof structures and decorative patterns are also completed
According to the Hue Monuments Conservation Center, Thai Hoa Palace is a typical architectural building of Hue Monuments that has been preserved intact to this day. This is not only an architectural building, but also a place to preserve a system of poetry in the unique “nhat thi, nhat hoa” decorative form (each poem is decorated with a picture), which has been recognized as a Documentary Heritage in Memory of the World in Asia and the Pacific by the UNESCO.
| The throne, restored at a 1:1 scale, is placed in the palace
During the Lunar New Year of the Dragon, Hue Monuments Conservation Center will open its doors for visitors to enter the Thai Hoa Palace and the restoration work will be continued after Tet Nguyen tieu (the Floral Lantern Festival) to be completed in 2025.
In order to serve visitors, the Center has placed a throne restored to a 1:1 scale in the palace. Visitors can take photos and keep memories when visiting, learning and admiring the characteristic wooden architecture of this palace. In addition, there, Hue Monuments Conservation Center also cooperated with People's Artisan Tran Do from Bat Trang pottery craft village (Hanoi) to organize an exhibition of a collection of dragons based on originals of the Nguyen Dynasty, adapted by the artisan.