The Old Palace of the Serbian Obrenović dynasty was built between 1882 and 1884, designed by Aleksandar Bugarski in line with the architecture of academism of the 19th century.
It was built for the needs of the newly formed Kingdom of Serbia headed by King Milan Obrenović with the intention of overshadowing all contemporary Serbian ruler residences. The appearance of the palace was significantly altered compared to the initial design after the reconstructions following heavy damage sustained during both world wars.
The Old Palace was the residence of the Karageorgevich dynasty between 1903 and 1914. Sessions of the temporary National Assembly were held there between 1919 and 1920, as well as court parties and receptions for foreign dignitaries until 1941. Reconstruction following the end of World War II lasted until 1947, and the palace thereafter housed the Presidium of the National Assembly, then the Government of the FNRJ, the Federal Executive Committee and finally, after 1961, the Assembly of the City of Belgrade.
Its outer architectural makeup places the building among the most beautiful works of Serbian academic architecture of the 19th century. The most elaborate façade is facing the gardens. A typical motif on the façade are the caryatids at the first floor level. Caryatids are repeated on the façade facing the Kralja Milana Street, along with a line of Doric columns in front.
The central hall leads to the Red Salon where the “Portrait of the Girl”, painted by Đura Jakšić in 1862 is sure to draw the most attention. The left side of the entrance to the Yellow Salon displays the facsimile of the letter of Pope John VII dated April 16, 878 – the oldest document every to mention the Slavic name of Belgrade. The Yellow Salon houses several exceptional paintings by Sava Šumanović, Jovan Bijelić, Petar Lubarda, Miodrag-Bata Mihajlović, Ljuba Lah, Jovan Zonjić, Peđa Milosavljević, Petar Omčikus and Vasa Pomorišac, as well as woodcuts by Rista Stijović. The Yellow Salon leads to the Ceremonial Hall, a ballroom leading to the terrace. The interior of the 19th century Salon was arranged by the Museum of the City of Belgrade in line with the spirit of the time when the Old Palace was built.
The Old Palace currently houses the Assembly of the City of Belgrade and the cabinet of the mayor.