From revolutions to rumours of lost princesses, Russia is a country of mystery, fierce winters and great beauty. The revolutionary city of St. Petersburg, offers insight into the grandeur and opulence that was imperial Russia. And there is nothing so enticing in St. Petersburg than a night with the Russian Ballet where Russian ballerinas are internationally renowned for their excellence and discipline.

Image courtesy of Russian Broadway

In St. Petersburg there are two theatres frequented by locals, theatre lovers and intrigued travellers. Both the Mariinsky and Mikhailovsky offer a night to remember, especially when viewing from the Tsar’s Box.

Know for hosting spectacular performances of opera and ballet within it’s walls, the Mariinsky Theatre is home to the famous company now known as Mariinsky Ballet Company – although during soviet times it was know as the Kirov Ballet. The Mariinsky resides within the city centre, in Teatralnaya Square. The very first performance took place in 1860 in the classically designed theatre.

The Mikhailovsky Theatre is one of the oldest theatres in Russia having been founded in 1833. This historic building is located at the Arts Square in St Petersburg city centre. In 2007, the Mikhailovsky Theatre was recognised for as St Petersburg’s ‘most prestigious musical theatre’. The entrance and auditorium have been renovated to its former glory and refined luxury.

The Tsar’s Box is the only place to sit for those wishing to have a more refined theatre experience. However, tickets for the box are tough to obtain in advance as they are often reserved for diplomatic commissions. The first row of the Tsar’s box is offers the ultimate experience acoustically and visually.

Image courtesy of Mariinsky Theatre

It is impossible to see such a performance in an ornate theatre setting without having somewhere to stay. And boy does the Four Seasons Lion Palace in St Petersburg out do itself.

Located within 20 minutes of both theatres, this historic hotel lies within the walls of a 19th-century palace. The name Lion Palace is taken from the two remarkable marble lions standing guard at the entrance. For a taste of imperial Russia in an opulent and historic setting, with a champagne welcome, private tours of the Hermitage or a viewing of a renowned Russian ballet school practicing their art, dinner parties with exclusive guests and an award winning spa treatment are what you can expect at The Four Seasons Lion Palace.

Image courtesy of The Four Seasons St Petersburg