Museum Huis Doorn is the former place of exile of the last German Emperor Wilhelm II. After the German defeat in the First World War, he fled to the neutral Netherlands in 1918. In 1920, Wilhelm II bought Huis Doorn, where he lived until his death in 1941.
You enter the estate through the characteristic Poortgebouw and see Huis Doorn beyond the lawn. The bust of Wilhelm II (1859-1941) with a stern look and moustache awaits you. The mansion is modest in size for imperial standards.
The interior of the house is still in its original state and, together with the art collection, gives a beautiful picture of European court culture. In the three-storey house, 18 beautifully decorated rooms are open to the public.
The interior of Huis Doorn comes from palaces in Berlin and Potsdam. Wilhelm II filled Huis Doorn with the contents of 64 train carriages that had arrived from Germany. Splendid furniture, paintings, silver objects and tapestries made it possible for the lord of the castle to live according to his position in his small palace.
The interior is still completely intact and offers you as a visitor an authentic image of international royal living. Enter a setting of European allure and centuries of German history of royal houses. And imagine how a pocket-sized court protocol played out daily in the small village of Doorn.
Huis Doorn houses the largest collection of German art and applied art outside Germany: more than 30,000 objects. Part of it can be seen in Huis Doorn, another part is in storage. The huge collection includes a lot of silver and porcelain, paintings and furniture from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and shows you the different stages of the Baroque. You can admire all objects from the House in digital collection database.
Wilhelm had a distinct taste. He had no interest in modern art. On the other hand, he loved the baroque art of his forefathers, such as Frederick the Great.
The silver objects are particularly beautiful table silver, which can be admired in the dining room, as well as silver showpieces, decorative cups, candlesticks, table pieces, coffee and tea sets. A unique object is the so-called Kaisergabel, a fork specially designed for Wilhelm II, with which he could eat easily, despite his handicapped arm.
The porcelain collection includes porcelain from China, Japan and Europe (including Meissen and KPM). Huis Doorn has coffee, tea and dining sets, table pieces, a chandelier and decorative pieces. In order to meet the enormous need for porcelain of the Hohenzollerns (who owned 28 palaces in Germany), they bought their own porcelain factory in 1763, the Königliche Porzellan Manufaktur (KPM) in Berlin. In the dining room, the table is set with one of the two large table services (Neuosier or Buntbemaltes) from the Hohenzollern.
Admire the paintings by famous Baroque painters. In addition to works by French painters such as Nicolas Lancret, Antoine Pesne and Jean Antoine Watteau, there are paintings by German masters such as Johann Samuel Beck, Johann Philip Bach, Daniel Chodowiecki and Johann Friedrich August Tischbein. Chodowiecki's famous Parade Parade painting is on display. But there is also a masterpiece by the Dutch painter Abraham Storck (Battle at Kijkduin), made around 1860.
Huis Doorn shows in a pocket format how the enormous palaces of the Hohenzollern in Germany were furnished and how people lived in them. There is an enormous variety of carpets, sofas, chairs, tables, chests of drawers, cupboards and clocks. Among the most beautiful pieces are the furniture decorated with gold and silver fittings and wooden inlay (marquetry) by Johannes Zwiener and the Spindler brothers.