Summer resident of the royal family
Graasten Palace is best known as the summer resident of the royal family.
The very first palace in Graasten was a hunting and leisure palace built in the midst of the 16th century. After it burned down in 1603, a new palace was built, probably where the current palace´s south wing is now.
Shortly before 1700 the Chancellor Frederik Ahlefeldt built an impressive Baroque palace, which itself unfortunately burned down in 1757, only leaving the palace church. The current Graasten Palace, or rather the south wing, thus originates from 1759. In 1842 the main building was added.
In 1935 the right of use of the palace was given to the late King Frederik and Queen Ingrid. Queen Ingrid was very interested in flowers and stood for the planning of the garden at Graasten Palace until her death in 2000.
There is no public access to the buildings and rooms of the palace, except from the palace church, who has special opening hours.
When the royal family is in residence at Graasten Palace, the area is closed to the public and there is no access to Graasten Palace Gardens and Church; However, the Palace Church is still open in connection with the summer evening song etc.
2023: The area and Graasten Palace Garden is reopened from 16 August after this summer's residency period.
H.R.M. The Queen's arrival in 2023
On 18 July 18 at 10 a.m. Queen Margrethe arrives on board the royal ship Dannebrog, which docks at Slotskajen in Sønderborg. After this, there will be an official greeting by Erik Lauritzen - Mayor of Sønderborg Municipality.
The Queen continues by car to Gråsten, where she arrives at approx. 10.30 a.m. on Torvet and Erik Lauritzen - mayor of Sønderborg Municipality gives the traditional welcome speech and then she is driven up to Graasten Palace.
Once the palace is inhabited, a royal split flag goes to the top of the pole on the palace's bell tower and the Royal Life Guard sets up to guard. Every day there is a shift change of the Royal Life Guard. The guard starts from Det Gule Palæ, Ahlefeldtvej 5, where the new guard’s line up approx. at 11.30 pm. From here, they march through Gråsten via Borggade, Torvet and Slotsgade to the palace, where the shift will take place at 12.00. In 2023 the first shift of guard will take place on the 18 July.
When HRH Queen Margrethe II is in residence at the palace, the Royal Life Guards Music corps participates in the change of guard on Fridays, after which a small concert is given in the palace courtyard.
In 2023, this will be the case on 21 and 28 July as well as 4 August. On the 4 August there will be a additional concert at Torvet from 10.30 – 11 a.m. (subject to change).