A palace gutted
The Catherine Palace at Tsarskoe Selo (Pushkin), south of Petersburg, was gutted during the second world war. When Russian people first saw the damage, they must have despaired.
Nevertheless, the government provided the resources to allow room-by-room restorations. The restoration of the Amber Room, one of the most famous palace interiors of the 18th century, is a triumph.
Panels that had been looted by the Nazis were recreated over 25 years with an investment of $11 million. Today, the Palace is fully restored, a spectacular icon that attracts millions of visitors a year.