ZAMEK Culture Centre

The Castle

The castle in Poznań was built in 1905-1910 as a residence of the last German emperor, Wilhelm II. The building was designed by Franz Heinrich Schwechten, who gave the imperial residence the appearance of a medieval castle. 

In 1919 the Castle went into Polish hands, more precisely, into the state ownership of the 2nd Republic. Wilhelm’s apartments became one of the official residences of the head of state. The remaining parts of the edifice were used by several institutions, with the University of Poznań at the fore. 

In late autumn 1939, after Nazi troops had entered Poznań, a decision was taken to embark on a total conversion of the castle into a Hitler’s residence. The works continued almost until the end of the war. 

In early February, 1945, the Castle is taken by the Red Army. 

In 1948-1962, the WW 2 interiors served as a seat of the municipal authorities. In 1962, the Palace of Culture was established, soon becoming almost the sole occupant of the building.  

In the recent years the former residence underwent comprehensive restoration work. All elevations were cleaned, the roofing was replaced, and the Rose Courtyard with the Fountain of Lions renovated. 

The large-scale conversion of the former official interiors was completed in 2012. As a result, the Grand Hall, the Grand Hallway and the Grand Hall Foyer  were completely refurbished, assuming a totally new appearance. The reconstruction also yielded state-of-the-art Exhibition Hall and a climatic Pałacowe Cinema, not to mention other highly functional rooms and facilities.

Today, the castle’s host is ZAMEK Culture Centre, one of the country’s largest cultural institutions. The interiors of the former imperial residence also house other cultural institutions, such as the Animation Theatre, Children’s Art Centre and the Museum of the Poznań Uprising – June 1956.


The most extensive publication concerned with the history of the castle is the exhibition catalogue “Kaiserschloss Posen. Zamek cesarski w Poznaniu” of 2003. The monograph gives a comprehensive account of all historical moments of the edifice and provides much information about its furnishings. The architecture of the castle quarter in discussed in greater detail in the books by Jan Skuratowicz  and Zenon Pałat. The iconography of the castle was presented by Janusz Pazder, while the architectural borrowings and their significance are outlined by Maciej Broniewski.

Maciej Broniewski, „Zamek cesarski w Poznaniu, czyli jak Wilhelm II widział świat, historię i swoją w niej role”, (in:) „W Trakcie. Poszukiwanie artystycznego i historycznego potencjału w nowoczesnych produktach turystyki kulturowej na przykładzie Traktu Królewsko-Cesarskiego w Poznaniu”, red. Piotr Bernatowicz, Poznań 2012. 
„Kaiserschloss Posen. Zamek cesarski w Poznaniu. Von der "Zwingburg im Osten" zum Kultursentrum "Zamek”. Od pruskiej "warowni na wschodzie" do Centrum Kultury "Zamek", exhibition catalogue, Janusz Pazder, Evelyn Zimmermann (eds), Potsdam-Poznań 2003.
Zenon Pałat, „Architektura a polityka. Gloryfikacja Prus i niemieckiej misji cywilizacyjnej w Poznaniu na początku XX wieku”, Poznań 2011.
Janusz Pazder, „Zamek cesarski”, Poznań 2010.
Jan Skuratowicz, „Architektura Poznania 1890-1918”, Poznań 1991.

Visiting The Castle

The castle is accessible to visitors daily, from 9 am to 10 pm. The hallways, corridors and courtyards may be visited free of charge. 

Once a month, the visitors may partake in the SUNDAY AT THE CASTLE, when visitors may attend an open lecture  and tour the castle with a guide free of charge. The tour starts at 12 am. 

Another event held once a month is a night tour of the castle. It is an extended version of the usual guided tour, with a limited number of visitors. From April to October, our programme also includes special tours of the cellars and attics. 
Additionally, every type of tour may be booked with our guides on the following telephone number  61 64 65 288 or at Tour dates and times will depend on the availability of the guides and the current events at CK ZAMEK, therefore bookings should be made at least a week in advance

Prices for booked guided tours:
‒ guided tours from 9 am to 7 pm ‒ PLN 100 in Polish / PLN 150 in a foreign language – fee for a group of up to 70 persons; groups requiring language other than English are kindly requested to make bookings in reasonable advance;
‒ night guided tour, starting at 8 pm o 9 pm – PLN 450 in Polish/foreign language ‒ fee from a group of up to 70 persons;
‒ Cellars & Attics tours (from April to October) – PLN 375 in Polish/foreign language - fee for a group of up to 15 persons;

Guided tours ‒ standard fees:
When space and guides are available, CK ZAMEK also organizes:
‒ guided tours on a chosen Wednesday of the month (tickets: PLN 10, subject to availability, starting at 6 pm);
‒ night tour of the castle on a chosen Friday of the month; (tickets: PLN 15, subject to availability, starting at 9 pm);
‒ Cellars & Attics tour on a chosen Thursday of the month; (tickets: PLN 25, subject to availability, starting at 8 pm); 

The days in which the above tours take place may change due to scheduled events at ZAMEK Culture Centre; up-to-date information about the tours is always available on ZAMEK’s website ( as well as in the calendar of events available in printed and electronic form on the premises of CK ZAMEK.

Tours with outside guides;
The Castle may also be visited with outside guides – in such cases the fee payable to ZAMEK is PLN 30. When coming to the Castle with an outside guide the ticket office and the security staff at CK ZAMEK should be advised. Payment of fee is not required when visiting the halls and corridors of the Castle which remain accessible to the general public, without entering the historic interiors shown in the course of our guided tours.

EU Co-Financed Project

Conversion of the Grand Hall complex at ZAMEK Culture Centre: With a view to effective use of cultural heritage 

project history.