Haiti: Sans Souci Palace Ruins

Sans Souci is the palace of the Haitian King Henri Christophe (a former slave who led Haiti to the revolution in 1804, gaining independence from France, and later proclaiming himself a king). When finished in 1813, the palace was the most impressive royal residence in the Carribean if not the Americas, loosely modeled on Versailles, with massive grounds and artificial fountains and many monuments, stables, armory, and much more. The grandeur of the palace was meant to impress the visiting Europeans with the power of the first black king. The palace stands in ruins now, although UNESCO World Heritage designation should help with restoration eventually.