There are two buildings called Leshou Hall among the imperial garden buildings in Beijing, one is in Ningshou Palace, northeast region of Forbidden City, and the other one is in the Summer Palace. The Leshou Hall in Summer Palace was the building as part of Qingyi Park during Emperor Qianlong period, as well as the main building in the residential living area of Summer Palace. this building is built for the mother of Emperor Qianlong (Queen Shengxian) for her 60th birthday. As Queen Shengxian believed in Buddhism, the upper part of Hall was arranged like a temple for worship.
Leshou Hall was repaired in Jiaqing seven years (1802), but was destroyed in Xianfeng then years (AD 1860), and was rebuilt in Guangxu seventeen years (1891).
Leshou Hall faces the Kunming Lake, leaned against Longevity Hill, east of Dehe Park and Renshou Hall, and west of the long gallery, is the best place to live and play in the Summer Palace. The golden inspcription “Leshou Hall” on the tablet was inscribed by Emperor Guangxu. There is copper deer, copper crane, and copper vases displaying inside the Leshou Hall, meaning “six peaces”. Inside the hall, there are plants and flowers such as planted magnolia, crabapple, peony, full House, which have meaning as ” wealth”. Now a magnolia in front of on the Yaoyue Door is transplanted by Qianlong from the south.
Leshou Hall is a large quadrangle courtyard, the main hall in the yard is the Leshou Hall, there are side halls on the east and west side, and nine Houzhao halls in the backyard.
There is a pier near the northern shore of Kunmin Lake. It was said that Empress Dowager Cixi had been here for worship.
Standing on the pie, we saw a steeve which is called the Dragon Light Steeve hanging highly in front of us, it was was built in Guangxu eighteen years (1892), and engraved with dragon. It was distroyed by the Allied Forces in1900 rebuilt and repaired in 1902, in 1952 people remove the protective parts, then it was repaired as before in 1989. The copper carved decoration on the top of the steeve was Qing Dynasty original.
Shuimuziqin Hall is the main entrance of Leshou Hall, facing south and the Kunming Lake. The hall is a hallway house, there are galleries before and after the hall.
Walking into the yard from Shuimuziqin Hall, we immediately saw a boulder placed on top of a white marble stone block, above of which was the Qianlong emperor’s inspcription “Qingzhixiu”.
There are two stones in the courtyard, their stories were unknown.
Outside the yard, there were crabapple tree and peonies except magnolia, symbolizing the “wealth”.
There is a pair of copper deer and copper crane displaying in front of Leshou Hall, symbolizing the “Six Peace” (deer, cranes, large bottle)
Nowadays, Leshou Hall is a one-storey building, with 5 houses in the front and 3 houses in the back.
the house in the front
the house in the back
east side hall
Weast side hall
Side halls were the places for Princess to have rest.
Houzao Room There were many artifacts here in the past, jewelry inside the hall were the treasure of Empress Dowager Cixi, more 3000 boxes. Now this room is used as a warehouse.
We arrived the Yongshou Room through the east door.
the gallery connect Leshou Hall and Yaoyue Door