I have been living in Bucharest for about 10 years now, but just this spring I have heard of and visited the Stirbey Palace in Buftea.
It was build by Barbu Stirbey, ruler of Muntenia region between 1853 and 1863 but became famous under his grandson, Prince Barbu Alexandru Stirbey.
Schooled in Paris, the Prince was one of the most important figures of Romanian high society in the early 1900. He was the administrator of the Crown domains and member of Boarding Council for most important companies of the country: factories, plants, insurance companies and so on. But his personal fortune made from huge inherited domains, forests, factories, vineyards, cotton & rice plantations, a dairy factory, a mill, cotton bandage factory made him the richest man of Romania at his time.
Even Queen Maria of Romania stayed here during the first world war and other personalities used to visit. Famous writers like Mihail Sadoveanu, Vasile Alecsandri, Ioan Slavici, musicians like George Enescu, other politicians and not only : Lascar Catargiu, Petre Carp, Teodor Rosetti, Mihai Sutu, Titu Maiorescu, gen Ion Argetoianu, Carol Davilla, Gheorghe Gheorghiu Dej, Hrusciov, Jean Marais, Belmondo stayed at the palace.
Now, the domain is under private adminsitration, an investment fund or something has it and they organize mostly weddings and private events.
In regular days, when we went, we just ate at the restaurant’s outside terrace. The ambiance is great, quiet, noble, but I am sorry and feel like the palace is kind of in degradation.
The surrounding park next to the lake is gorgeous with his secular trees but still more can be done. I will surely visit again at least to drink a lemonade at the palace. By the way, it was really good:)))
And the crown jewel, the most exceptional building here is the little church