Sinaia Romania is a ski resort town in Transylvania. It is characterized by peak-roof buildings, including a number of huge mansions, some of which have been converted to into inns, some that stand empty and for sale.
The town’s primary sites consist of:
- Sinaia Monastery, a 17th-century facility (refurbished in the late 19th century) that consists of living quarters, a very pretty, heavily frescoed old church, a new chapel and a bell tower.
- Dramatic casino, built in the early 20th century to replace an older one that was destroyed in a fire.
The area’s primary site was few kilometers out of town. This beautiful summer palace was built in the late 19th century by Romania’s King Carol. An harmonious blend of Neo-Renaissance and Gothic styles, it is especially noteworthy for its dramatic spires and hand-carved, decorative woodwork. His wife ensured that the palace (which was partially redesigned in 1914, when electricity, central heating and an elevator were added) was furnished with the most ornate furnishings and plentiful art. Among the more interesting ground-floor rooms are the Dining Room, King Ferdinand’s Apartment and the Hall of Honor, with its lovely, stained-glass ceiling-topped, carved wooden staircase. The second floor is home to the Queen’s quarters, with the gilded furniture of her bedroom and the artwork in her apartment. The less formal third floor is home to children, relatives, guests, teacher’s bedrooms, the children’s playroom and probably the most dramatic room in the building, a large office, whose walls are covered with a heavily embossed gold wall covering, which is filled with gilded furniture and whose ceiling is a lovely, multi-colored tinted glass window.
The castle is located in a small, tourist-oriented town filled with huge-alpine hotels and inns and a couple of restaurants, one at which we chose for a fast lunch.
Although we try hard to not eat by tourist attractions, we didn’t have much of a choice if we wanted a fast lunch. We chose La Tunuri Restaurant, which is part of a hotel as it appeared to be the safest of two less than inspiring options. Joyce’s chicken in mushroom cream sauce was actually pretty good while Tom’s wiener schnitzel was acceptable, but not much more. Tom also took the opportunity to try one of the few local dark beers he had seen since the beginning of the trip. The Leffe Bonda was certainly more hoppy, but not much more interesting than some of the local pilsners he tried, but was okay.