It was built by Joseph Effner for Elector Maximilian II Emanuel in 1715–17 as a hunting lodge. It was the extension and modification of an already existing noble mansion. Two pavilions are added each in the south and north of the main building. A few years later a fire damaged the Fürstenried Palace. The following year, at the birth of the future Maximilian III Joseph, Fürstenried went as puerperal gift to the Princess Maria Amalia of Austria, the wife of the son of Maximilian Emanuel, Elector Charles Albert. From 1778 to 1796 Fürstenried Palace was the residence of the former Electress Maria Anna of Saxony, the widow of Maximilian III Joseph. In September 1796, Munich was surrounded by the French Republican Army that fought against the Austro-Imperial forces. Here, the Fuerstenried castle was plundered.
During the German war in 1866 and the Franco-German war 1870/71 the castle was used as a military hospital. The palace served as domicile for King Otto of Bavaria from 1883 onwards until his death in 1916. The King lived in an elegantly furnished apartment on the ground floor, while his servants lived on the first floor. After the First World War, the castle served as a military hospital again. Since 1925 the Catholic Retreat Hostel for spiritual exercises has been housed in Fürstenried Palace. Only the surrounding wall friezes of the Blue Cabinet on the second floor of the main building have been preserved from the interiors. Pope Benedict XVI has said that, prior to his ordination as a deacon in the fall of 1950, he pondered his vocation to the priesthood "as I walked in the beautiful park of Fürstenried ... ."
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