Palace of Gold
Hours and Admission: please visit palaceofgold.com
As you approach Prabhupada’s Palace of Gold, you feel like you are walking into an ancient Indian kingdom. The expansive, breathtaking view of Appalachian hills and valleys draws your mind miles away and bathes it in serenity.
Inside the Prabhupada’s Palace, the sunlight comes alive even more as it passes through 31 stained glass windows and is reflected in crystal chandeliers and mirrored ceilings. Your feet glide along cool, smooth, solid marble floors into the magnificent halls of the Palace. All around - in walls, floor, and ceiling – you see works of art: intricate designs of inlaid stone containing fifty-two varieties of marble and onyx imported from Europe, Asia, and Africa.
Entering the Grand Hall, you marvel at the giant French chandelier, over 150 years old, and ceiling murals depicting ancient Indian classics painted in the tradition of Renaissance masters. You imagine the majesty and opulence of that ancient civilization, and there it is! Right before you, the walls and pillars are accented with semi-precious stones and pure gold. Under the thirty-ton main dome is a 4,200-piece crystal ceiling.
The windows, too, are works of art, especially the four exquisite “royal peacock windows” each of which is crafted with more than 1,500 pieces of hand-crafted stained glass. Peacock and lotus motifs pervade the Palace, etched into numerous windows and carved into doors, reminding one of Lord Krishna, who sports a peacock feather in His hair and a lotus flower in His hand.
Enliven Your Senses at the Palace Rose Garden
Leaving Prabhupada’s Palace, you are drawn by aromatic breezes to our award-winning Palace Rose Gardens. You want to “take time to smell the roses,” but with over 3,000 bushes and 150 varieties of roses, each with a unique fragrance, you don’t know where to start! These pleasure gardens are graced with over one hundred water fountains which sparkle in the sunlight, playfully animating and refreshing the atmosphere. No wonder this garden, a vivid bouquet of color set against a backdrop of green hills, is one of the top 100 rose gardens in the U.S.A.
But time your visit carefully. The Palace Rose Garden has three different blooms, starting in early June to mid-July, followed by a second bloom late July to early August, and the third bloom in late September.
Soothe your Soul at the Lotus Pond
Wandering through the gardens to the back of Prabhupada’s Palace, you discover the Lotus Pond. The placid water of this pond is often covered by a blanket of cupped green leaves and gorgeous pink blooms. The beauty of the lotus flower is sung about in ancient poetry and has a fragrance unlike any flower on Earth. It is said that lotuses create an atmosphere of transcendence, and if you take a moment to observe how they grow, you’ll understand why. The lotus grows in the middle of the water and is firmly rooted in the ground below, but the leaves and flowers do not touch the water. The lotus knows the art of “rising above it all,” and if you pause for a few moments of meditation or prayer beside the Lotus Pond, you, too, may get a little taste of transcendence.
Take a Guided Tour
To help you get the full experience of Prabhupada’s Palace, we offer guided tours every half an hour which last for approximately 25 minutes. Tours are available at the following times:
Hours and Admission: palaceofgold.com