Court cancels sale of Queen Mary Palace in Mamaia

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The sale and purchase contract of Queen Mary Palace in Mamaia, a seaside resort in Constanta, has been cancelled by the Constanta Tribunal. The ruling is yet not final.

The palace, a historical monument in ruins, had been sold at the price of a luxury apartment in 2003, Info Sud-Est reports.

After the sale, the Ministry of Culture has asked for the annulment of the purchase agreement. The court has ruled in the ministry’s appeal, noting the contract’s nullity. The ruling can be challenged within 30 days.

After going through a fire in 2012, the Royal Palace in Mamaia used to be a club, disco or night club and is now in ruins, becoming a unsanitary building accommodating mold and decay, on the brink of collapse, although it is a historical monument of category A.

The palace built during 1924 – 1926 at the request of Queen Mary of Romania, following the plans of Italian architect Mario Stoppa.

The palace hosted the most important royal and noble members who traveled on the Black Sea coast to visit the Romanian Royal Family.

Subsequently, it came into the ownership of Queen Elena, mother of King Mihai I and in 1932 King Carol II has donated the building to the Hidro-aviation Fleet. In 1948 the communists nationalized the palace and it ended under the authority of S.C. Mamaia S.A. state-owned company in 1990.

According to the local mass media, the palace was sold by S.C. Mamaia S.A. in 2003 to a private company, Light System Ltd, for around RON 700,000, meaning EUR 150,000 (according to the current exchange rate), with half of the sum representing the value of the goods inside the palace. Practically, the building itself was being sold for EUR 75,000-80,000.

The palace stretches on an area of 1,218 sqm, having basement, ground floor, another floor and attic, which means a total area of almost 5,000 sqm.

The land corresponding to the palace, 1.5 hectares, was under the property of Constanta City Hall and was also sold in 2004 with 23 euros/sqm, although the plot of lands in Mamaia resort would be normally sold at prices ranging from EUR 200 to EUR 300 per square meter.

In 2014, after the local journalists revealed the controversies around the palace’s sale, anti-corruption prosecutors started an investigation, indicting the former mayor of Constanta, Radu Mazare in this case for abuse in office.

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