ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Visiting Beggen Castle, Luxembourg City: a Russian Embassy with plenty of history

Updated on March 14, 2017
Flag of Luxembourg
Flag of Luxembourg | Source
Postcard from 1913 of the Chateau de Beggen (former Chateau Metz), current Embassy of Russia in Luxembourg.
Postcard from 1913 of the Chateau de Beggen (former Chateau Metz), current Embassy of Russia in Luxembourg. | Source
 Gate to Beggen Castle, rue des Hauts-Fourneaux
Gate to Beggen Castle, rue des Hauts-Fourneaux | Source

By the distinguished Belgian architect Wynand Janssens

This building and its grounds are not open to the public (except on official business) but may be viewed from beyond its perimeter. The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg has a profusion of castles, some of which are ancient, ruined fortresses, others are residences noted for gracious living; others such as the one at Beggen, a suburb of Luxembourg City, function as hubs business for national and diplomatic business.

Beggen Castle (French: Château de Beggen; Létzebuergesch: Beggener Schlass) is today the seat of the Embassy of the Russian Federation (and previously the Soivet Embassy). In the district of Beggen, over 100 Russians are resident, a sizeable proportion of which are associated with the Embassy. The question might be asked, why does Russia maintain such a large Embassy in such a small country as Luxembourg? The presence of various European Union institutions in Luxembourg might seem to supply an answer, but actually the roots of the answer go back much further.

Prior to 1890, the Grand Duke of Luxembourg was the monarch of The Netherlands, and since the 18th century the Russians Czars had enjoyed close relations with The Netherlands, dating from the time when Czar Peter the Great had travelled incognito in 1697-98 to that country then known as the Dutch Republic.

Interestingly, in Soviet times, the Soviet presence in the Grand Duchy included the activities of the East-West United Bank, which served as an earner of currency for the Soviet Union.

Beggen Castle was designed by a Belgian architect, Wynand Janssens (1827-1913)(1), in 1894-95, for the prominent industrialist Emile Metz. It replaced a previous building which was destroyed by fire. Its style has given rise to comparisons with the Chateaux at Vaux-le-Vicomte and Fontainebleau. I have supplied a photo of Beggen Castle dating from 1913, the year of the architect's death.

Over the next, several decades the property changed hands many times. In 1940, the German Nazi war machine rolled into the Grand Duchy and Beggen Castle was occupied as a base for the Wehrmacht. In 1944-45, parts of the Grand Duchy were successively liberated by the Allies and, during the Battle of the Bulge, reoccupied by the Wehrmacht. But in 1944 the US army took up residence in Beggen Castle and remained there until several months after the end of World War 2 in Europe.

In 1956, the Soviet Union purchased Beggen Castle for use as its Embassy, and almost immediately the building became a hub of protests against the Soviet intervention following the Hungarian Uprising. In 1973, the Soviet government purchased further land in the vicinity of the building. In 2005-2009 the property was considerably refurbished.

March 14, 2017


(1) Other works by Architect Janssens include the Eglise Sainte-Catherine / Sint-Katelijnekerk, Brussels (with Jospeh Poelaert), the Palais du Midi / Zuidpaleis, Brussels, and many others.

Also worth seeing

In Luxembourg City itself, the Gelle Fra monument is at the Place de la Constitution; in sight of which is the Pont Adolphe across the Pétrusse Valley. Close to the monument are Luxembourg's Cathedral and the adjacent National Library , a former Jesuit college which dates from 1603; in the Cathedral's crypt lie the remains of Jean the Blind of Luxembourg, killed at the Battle of Crécy in 1346. The Grand Ducal Palace , which dates from the 16th century, is in Flemish Renaissance style: the monarch's residence and office since 1890.

 Map of Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, with the boundaries of the city's twenty-four quarters demarcated and the quarter of Beggen highlighted in blue.
Map of Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, with the boundaries of the city's twenty-four quarters demarcated and the quarter of Beggen highlighted in blue. | Source

How to get there

The nearest large international airport is Luxembourg (Aéroport de Luxembourg), at Findel, from where car rental is available. For North American travellers making the London, England area their touring base, airlines flying to Luxembourg include Luxair (from London Heathrow Airport and London City Airport) and CityJet (from London City Airport). Please check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information. Please refer to appropriate consular sources for any special border crossing arrangements which may apply to citizens of certain nationalities.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)