Without generous donations, the reconstruction of the Belvedere would never have been possible. In addition to substantial contributions from major donors, many private individuals and companies have supported the building’s refurbishment with financial or material donations.
The Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung
The Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung contributed 50% of the funding for the gatehouse, the outdoor staircases, the west arcades and the west colonnades of the Belvedere. With an upper limit of 3.5 million DM, the foundation agreed to match every German mark that was collected as a donation. Thus, the entire amount of construction expenses for this section (7.3 million DM) was raised.
Restorations to the final section of the building, the two wing walls, which delineate the forecourt of the Belvedere, could be completed through a substantial contribution from the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung in May 2005. Consequently, reconstruction measures on the building have concluded – the current task is to preserve the architectural garden ensemble within the context of its successful use and operation.
Dr. Werner Otto
An individual donation in the amount of 4.5 million DM from Dr. Werner Otto, the founder of mail order company, made it possible to reconstruct the western tower. Through a further donation from the Otto company in November 2000, pledged in the amount of 6 to 8 million DM during a visit to the construction site, the preservation of the building was secured from further decline.
Thanks to secured funding through these major donations, restoration work also progressed swiftly on the eastern colonnade and northern arcade, and the eastern tower opened with a festive celebration in June 2003.
The Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt
The Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt financed one third of a technically complicated refurbishment of the water basin in the inner courtyard of the Belvedere. This pool features especially magical reflections of the architecture.
Ten benches are installed around the water basin in the west and east arcades, offering visitors moments of calm and enjoyment. At the Temple of Pomona two benches provide a view of the beautiful garden grounds and overlooks a plethora of gardens in Potsdam. Funding for all of the benches was contributed by private individuals or companies. Donors’ names are inscribed on small metal plates attached to the benches. Additional benches along the lawn parterre and in the exhibition on the Belvedere’s architectural history are still needed and may yet be acquired through the generous support of new sponsors.
The Radeberger Gruppe
The Radeberger Gruppe KG supports the Förderverein Pfingstberg during its cultural events in a very special way, supplying the association with draft beer, sparkling water and other beers under the trademarks Rex, Schultheiss and Berliner Kindl. It also assists the association by making seating available in and around the Belvedere during concerts and theater events.
In addition, there are numerous partnerships with companies and institutions that support the work of the Förderverein Pfingstberg e.V..
Preserving cultural treasures and bringing architecture to life for the benefit of many was particularly important to Werner Otto. Through his contribution to the reconstruction of the Belvedere on Pfingstberg he made it possible for us to realize this objective.
Even after the Belvedere’s reopening, he took an active interest in the association’s work and was pleased with the success of the project. It always filled us with pride and encouragement, and still motivates us to continue along this chosen path.
In the interim the enthusiasm of more than a million visitors to the Belvedere and the rare enjoyment that members, supporters, staff and friends of the Förderverein Pfingstberg e.V. persistently feel about the beauty of this historical ensemble, are a daily reminder to us of how much Werner Otto accomplished with his vision and creative spirit.
The Förderverein Pfingstberg in Potsdam e.V. (association).