Over the centuries the Wittelsbach dynasty transformed a small, 14th-century moated castle into a magnificent palace, performing the dual functions of royal residence and government seat. Today the palace's state rooms and art collections, which cover the Renaissance, the early baroque period, the rococo era and classicism, form one of the largest museum complexes in Bavaria.
The architecture, interior decoration and works of art collected in Munich Residence range in time from the Renaissance, via the early Baroque and Rococo periods to the neoclassical era. They all bear witness to the discriminating taste and the political ambition of the Wittelsbach dynasty.
The Residence houses a number of museums and monuments maintained by the Bavarian Administration of State-owned Palaces, Gardens and Lakes (the Residenz Museum itself, the Treasury, the Cuvilliés-Theater and the Allerheiligen-Hofkirche) along with other cultural institutions.
The Creation of the Court Garden began in 1613, at the same time as the new buildings and extensions erected by Duke Maximilian I. The garden lay outside the moat that then surrounded much of the Residence. The garden as a whole has been redesigned several times in accordance with prevailing tastes. The central pavilion, designed in 1615 by Heinrich Schön the Elder, survives, its eight arches reflecting the division of the garden by cross-shaped and diagonal paths.