The room of Maria Nikolayevna, the Emperor's eldest daughter, has retained its original decoration, which is simple and unpretentious like in all the rooms of the first floor. There are several portraits of Nicholas I on display here. The large painting by Yegor Botman (1849) features the Emperor with his favourite dog Hussar against the background of the Cottage Palace. A lithograph by an unknown master shows him in front of the Olga Pavilion at Peterhof; Michel Zichy's watercolour of 1853 portrays the Emperor on Bibigon Hill four kilometres from Peterhof; Anton Kozlov's lithograph News from the Crimea (1854) depicts him in the Study of the Winter Palace together with his son Alexander. A watercolour by Woldemar Hau (1855) captures Nicholas I on his death-bed.
A highlight of the interior and of the palace as a whole is a unique clock showing the time in sixty-six towns of Russia including that in Moscow, St Petersburg and New Archangel at Alaska. It was made by the clock-maker Ivan Yurin in 1861. Half of the room is covered with a carpet worked in worsted with a multicoloured pattern imitating stained-glass windows. The carpet was embroidered for Alexander III and Maria Feodorovna by the pupils of the Elizabeth College for Girls on the occasion of their coronation which took place on 15 May 1883. Grand Duke Alexander Alexandrovich, the future Emperor Alexander III, and Maria Feodorovna were in the possession of the Cottage Palace from 1867.
In 1896-97 one of the daughters' rooms was converted into a study and redecorated by the famous furniture company of Friedrich and Robert Meltzer. According to the new project the walls were lined with light-coloured cotton with a plant ornament, while the lower parts of the walls were panelled with Karelian birch. The combination of the large, perfectly polished surfaces of wood with the floral cotton upholstery radically changed the appearance of the interior. The features of the new style, Art Nouveau, fashionable in Russian and Western European art in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, could be now seen there. This new trend was characterized by a refusal from copying historical styles and by the use of stylized plant and animal motifs borrowed directly from the natural world. A special attention was paid to the design of the interior, the unity of its decor, furniture and all the objects of domestic use. On the shelf running along the wall are shown articles by well-known reformers of artistic glass making - the French Emile Galle and the Daum Frères who created original objects from multilayered glass with a relief pattern on a smoky or light background.
Their works won general acclaim for the novelty of their forms, decoration and colour schemes. Also on display in the study is a selection of porcelain articles - the vases, figurines of animals and birds produced at the Royal Porcelain Factory at Copenhagen which served as models for imitation in Europe and at the Imperial Porcelain Factory in Russia.
The Room of Maria Nikolayevna.
The Room of Maria Nikolayevna. Clock. By Ivan Yurin. 1861.
The Room of Maria Nikolayevna. Portrait of Emperor Nicholas I. Yegor Botman. 1849.
The Study of Maria Feodorovna.
The Study of Maria Feodorovna. Decorative vases and teapot. Copenhagen, Denmark. The Royal Porcelain Factory. Late 19th - early 20th century.
The Study of Maria Feodorovna. Statuettes depicting an American dancer Loye Fuller. France. By Leonardo van Weidefeldt. 1898. Decorative vases. France. By Raoul Larche. Second half of the 19th century.