Are you looking forward to the new tourist season? When everything erupts again? Do you sleep peacefully?
Sleeping is peaceful and we look forward to the last time we welcome visitors to our chateau in late October. So we haven’t seen them for almost six months. I must say that at the start of the season there is always a huge enthusiasm that we are showing something new again. We do everything to make our visitors feel as good as possible.
So is everything really ready? Are all 995 windows polished?
I admit it clearly, not all of them. We are hampered by a lot of absences, we have a lot of sick people in the team, but we still manage. Of course, it’s not just the windows, but it’s the preparation of all the woodwork, the furniture, we have to train the guide, update the information system and last but not least, last Sunday we decided to organize a volunteer brigade when the general public came to the park to help clear the branches after the storm. . I would also like to thank everyone once again.
The most famous fairy tale filmed in our country was The Prince and the Evening Star. And this year, a fairy tale that will be shown on television at Christmas should be shot in Hrádek.
Martin Rejman, castellan of Hrádek u Nechanic castle
With what novelties are you starting the season this year?
It wouldn’t be me not to come up with something new. For example, our visiting hours have changed a bit, so I ask visitors to visit our official website and check how it is. Probably the biggest change is that we tried to link the cellars and the tower with the visitor route. It is called Des Caves à la Tour and we will walk it every holiday, which means that visitors can visit it from July to August. I believe it will be an experience to climb from the lowest lower floors of our castle to a tower almost 30 meters high.
Until now, there was only one special visit to the cellars, which you had to wait for.
To date, the cellars were basically our thirteenth secret quote-unquote room, and I was terribly sorry. I invite everyone to take a tour from the cellars to the tower and I think the technical background as well as the amazing view are again different from our classic tourist routes, where people look at the beautiful pieces.
I remember when you became a castellan in Hrádek, you were so interested in the technical background that you wanted to start showing it to people, right?
Exactly. It was not just the cellars, but we also managed to connect a drawer to the first round, which we are now removing, so to speak. As a visitor, of course, and only figuratively. It simply completes the image of a modern mansion until the middle of the 19th century, because these technical adjustments make Hrádek what Hrádek is.
So what technical adjustments did Count Harrach use? In addition to the already mentioned extractor.
I can mention, for example, the central heating, because down in the basement there are 6 boilers which heated the whole castle, not only the ground floor but also the first floor. And it must be said that the pipes passed under the floor, for example, which means that we can already speak of underfloor heating in the middle of the 19th century. We consider it a modern thing today, but you see, the Harrachs knew this 150 years ago.
You therefore connected the cellars to the castle tower during the visit.
The clock tower is when you look at the castle from the park, so it is the one on the left. This is the end of the west wing.
Hrádek u Nechanic State Castleit is a part of England in Eastern Bohemia
The current exhibition of the castle is an example of the aristocratic life of the second half of the 19th century in the original historic building (representation rooms, countess and countess apartments, picture gallery, guest rooms, castle chapel) . Hrádek u Nechanic State Castle was declared a national cultural monument in 2001.
Another attraction in your castle is the devil in the chapel. Maybe they don’t have it anywhere else.
Yes, the Sainte-Anne chapel and the famous devil watching us from the stained glass window.
What else do we have to say about this year’s visiting season?
Even if it’s a season where you have to save money, we still managed to organize a relatively rich cultural program. Already in mid-April we will look at Easter in Hrádek, that is, thematically decorated interiors. Again, visitors will be able to enjoy the flower exhibition, which we call Rozkvetlý Hrádek. The castle festivities are also preparing for the month of August, which we will hold on August 20 and 21. I recommend that you check out our website and mark in your calendar what is happening with us.
The prices of almost everything are increasing, will you also increase the price of admission?
It’s like that. After two covid seasons, it has to be. And it’s also because energy costs have gone up quite dramatically, for example. So, on average, we increase the basic admission price for adults by 30 CZK, or about 15%. But on the other hand, we have reduced the entrance price for children. From 6 to 17 years old they look at us for 70 CZK and children under 6 years old have free admission.
And one more important thing, how do we get there? Because there are supposed to be closures around you this year?
That’s right, you have the right information. Those of you coming from Liberec, Turnov, Jičín or Hořice will probably have to pass through the town of Nechanice, where there is now a detour. I recommend making such a ten-minute pillow, you better leave a little earlier. Unfortunately, we will not do anything about it and this situation will last until the end of the holidays.
There have been many beautiful fairy tales in the castle in history. Which will you remember right away?
The most famous was probably the Prince and the Evening Star, when Libuška Šafránková really stood in our view from the park. But it wasn’t just fairy tales, it was also various movies, like Dark Blue World, most recently the Genius series about the life of Albert Einstein. And we are currently negotiating with filmmakers who would like to shoot a fairy tale with us this year, which should be on television at Christmas.
Our guest was the castellan of Hrádek u Nechanic Castle, Martin Rejman. The full interview can be heard in our audio archive.