One of the most interesting landmarks in Innsbruck, Austria is the Golden Roof. Known in German as the Goldenes Dachl, this historical site was constructed in 1500 and set with no less than 2,657 copper tiles. The intricate reliefs featured on the balcony reflect a number of figures, symbols, and the coats of arms of Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor.
The Golden Roof was constructed by Archduke Friedrich IV during the early 15th century to serve as the residence of Tirolean sovereigns. Nestled in the heart of the Old Town, this three-story balcony served as a royal seating area where Maximilian I was able to enjoy tournaments taking place in the square below. The Golden Roof was finally completed near the beginning of the 16th century and served as a commemoration of Maximilian’s marriage to Bianca Maria Sforza of Milan. An image of Maximilian between his first wife, Maria of Burgundy, and his second wife was depicted on the balcony to prevent any potential alienation of allies gained from his first marriage.
On February 25, 1536, Jacob Hutter, who founded the Hutterites, was burned at the stake here for his Anabaptist beliefs.
The Golden Roof has been home to the International Alpine Convention Office since 2003. The Convention serves as a coalition of eight Alpine nations that share a commitment to sustainable development in the European Alps. The Maximilanum, a museum, is also housed inside the building along with the Innsbruck City Archives.
Above Images Credit: Andrew Bossi | This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic license.