During the fire of 1723 the top wooden octagon and the spire burnt down, the bells hanging in the stone octagon fell down having pierced the vaults. Longtime the church remained empty and was reconstructed only in 1770-s. In the beginning of the XIX century the two remained octagons were covered with a dome with a considerably shortened "twisted" spire.
During the working-out of the walls there was used the classical order. The entrances to the church have the form of porticos supported by columns with straight and spiral cannelures. The small order of the porticos corresponds to the big order of the ground level of the building. The massive voluted buttresses of the western facade are very impressive. The octagons' angles have twin piers. Originally the church was richly decorated with sculptures that later were partially dismounted. The interior preserves fragments of the original sculptural decoration. In 1968 the iconostasis of the XVIII century was given to the Makhachkala Dormition Cathedral, where it stayed till the early 2000. The present iconostasis is attributed to the XIX century. It comes from the demolished Ss. Peter and Paul cathedral at the Preobrazhensky settlement.
The museum tour starts with ‘Morning of the Space Era’ exhibit, with satellite models, the first space station, a model of a mobile station spaceship, the video records of preparation for Yuri Gagarin’s space flight on 12 April 1961 and the launch of his spacecraft, along with some unique photographs, the family archive and personal possessions of the first cosmonaut. There are also the famous space dogs Belka and Strelka on display, both of them stuffed.
The next hall is devoted to remarkable scientists and inventors – Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, Sergei Korolev and Friedrich Zander. It exhibits spacecraft designers and the cosmonauts’ photo archives, biographical records, awards, work notes, personal possessions and documents.
A two-storey hall inside the museum is of great interest to visitors. It imitates a spaceship with a model of the main unit of the space station ‘Mir’ (you can enter it), spacesuits, flight mockups for cosmonauts, spaceship models, Moon soil samples, and many other interesting artifacts.
The exposition plunges you into the history of both Soviet and world cosmonautics and guides you through its evolution step by step: from technical drawings and copies of the first miniature rockets to full-size models of spacecraft and satellites, from the first cumbersome spacesuits to the modern ones which cosmonauts can wear comfortably in the extreme conditions of outer space. A large number of authentic exhibits which used to be in space and in space training centres are described with technical accuracy, interweaving with the extraordinary destinies of the pioneers of cosmonautics.
In the Zaryadye Park one can visit both the ice cave and the media center, listen to concerts in the Philharmonic Hall, and taste unique Russian dishes at the Vkus Rossii (taste of Russia) restaurant, where the walls are replaced by stained glass windows with nature views. Here one can simultaneously see the birch grove and the tundra with its laying bushes and lakes with reeds. They principally did not make tracks in the park, as tiles, wood and grass surfaces are much more pleasant than asphalt. An unusual idea is the floating bridge. From this springboard, which really hovers over the Moskva River, there are amazing views of the river, the Kremlin, the Cathedral of Christ the Savior and the embankment. One can walk in the park at any time of the day or night as everything is lit up in the dark.
Zaryadye Park is one of the five best parks in the world! But first of all it is unique as this place has preserved the most ancient history. After all, since the XVI century mainly merchants and salespeople settled here. Central street of Zaryadye led from the Konstantin-Eleninsky gate of the Kremlin directly to the pier of the Moskva River through which goods were delivered here. Most of the historic wooden houses of Zaryadye were destroyed by the fire of 1812, when during the Patriotic War the city was set on fire by Napoleon's troops. The stone three-story houses were built on the place of the burned down ones, which housed small shops, and craftsmen lived there. But in the 30s of the XXth the trading settlement Zaryadye was destroyed. In the 1940s Moscow began the grandiose construction of eight metropolitan skyscrapers in the style of the Soviet Art Deco. Seven of them were built. However, the eighth skyscraper in Zaryadye was not completed because of Stalin's death, and the grand Palace of Soviets on the site of the blown up temple of Christ the Savior was not completed either. In the 60s the building of the Rossiya Hotel was erected in Zaryadye. For most native Moscow residents this building remained in the memories as a beautiful concert hall, where wonderful concerts of pop stars of that time were held and a summer Moscow Film Festival was held. And Hotel Rossiya stood there till 2006 when it was dismantled.
Monumental building, occupying a substantial portion of Kitai-gorod quarter, represents a classical variant of bazaar. The project was created by a famous architect from Saint Petersburg G. Quarenghi. Moscow skilful architects S. Karin and I. Selikhov were raising it, adapting to the actual place. They've realized the architectural decoration of large arches and solid Corinthian semicolumns of the general plan. Nevertheless the level difference between Ilyinka and Varvarka streets have defined some changes of the altitude and dimensions of some parts of the building. Until quite recently this perimeter-closed building had a vast inner court surrounded by open galleries.
Take a tour of these chambers, and you will have a clear idea of what stone buildings looked like in medieval Moscow. The official opening of the Old English Court Museum took place on 18 October 1994 in the presence of and with the participation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
Each room in the Old English Court Museum is devoted to a particular aspect of Anglo-Russian trade, diplomatic and cultural relations in the 16th-17th centuries. Excursions in the house provide an overall introduction to the history of the English Court and its inhabitants. The museum is also famous for its attractive selection of unusual educational activities in Russian.
Thanks to its unique acoustics the Main Hall of The Old English Court is used for concerts of early music played on Renaissance and Baroque instruments
A chronicle refers to the site as "behind the marketplace, opposite the Pansky Court". Soon after it was built, this Church became very popular in Moscow. In the 16th century, not only the street was named after it, but also Kitay-Gorod's corner tower, St Barbara's Tower. Until the 16th century, Varvarka Street was called Vsekhsvyatskaya Street (All Saints Street), after the All Saints Church in the neighbourhood of Kulishki.
The exterior appearance of Aloisio's white-stone Church may only be imagined based on the old master plan. The St. Barbara's Church had a square architectural plan, with semicircles protruding from all the four sides; it may have been similar to the Church of Metropolitan Peter at the St. Peter's High Monastery.
In 1795, the Moscow metropolitan Plato ordered the disassembling of the old building of the Church, which at that time was still "strong and fully equipped", because, in his opinion, it did not correspond to the general appearance of the area.
The new Church was constructed from 1796 to 1804 to a design by Rodion Kazakov, on the Aloisio's foundation. The money for the construction was allocated by Ivan Baryshnikov, a major of artillery, and by Nikolay Samgin, a Moscow first-guild merchant. The Church was consecrated on 26 June 1804.
Its main part has a cross architectural plan and features porticoes with their pediments based on Corinthian columns. Inside, the Church is full of light, thanks to its two layers of windows and the small daylight windows of its dome's drum. With its exterior decor featuring clear lines of the entire main part and with its wide round dome featuring a small spire, this Church is a good example of mature Moscow Classicism.
In 1812, Napoleon's troops used the Church as a stable. The building suffered a lot of damage. It was restored in the 1820s.
The Church's bell tower is not so tall and is crowned by a small semicircle with a cross. The upper tier of its belfry has wide archways framed with pilasters featuring a Corinthian capital and pediments. Its second tier was demolished after the 1917 Russian Revolution, later being rebuilt in 1967 during restoration works (supervised by the architect G. Makarov).
Inside the Church, 19th-century painting and choir stalls in its western part have survived.
As was the case with many churches, the St. Barbara's Church housed a warehouse during Soviet times. Later, it was used as an office building.
By 1980, the Church was housing the Council of the Moscow Region Department of the All-Russian Society for the Conservation of Historical and Cultural Monuments.
In 1991, the Church was handed back to the congregation.
To get inside, visitors go up the high ancient staircase covered with a tented-roof porch. In this centuries-old church, you can pay your respects to the miraculous Reigning Icon of the Mother of God (also known as Our Lady Derzhavnaya Icon). The church was richly adorned right after construction; unfortunately, the decorations have not survived. In the tsarist era, floors were covered with felt during the cold months and icons were mostly kept in carved cases.
The existing paintings appeared fifteen years ago and changed the perception of the inner space dramatically. Originally, the walls were clean. The five-row iconostasis is also a relatively recent addition. In the main church, attention is attracted to the astonishingly expressive wooden sculpture The Dungeoned Christ which used to be located in the side-altar. The Tsar’s Courtyard was moved to another place in the 1760s, and the church became the Kolomenskoe parish church.
Tsar Peter the Great’s Dutch Cabin appeared in Kolomenskoe as part of its display in 2013. This is a full-size reconstructed authentic 17th-century house in Zaandam, where the Tsar lived during his visit to the Netherlands in 1697, and where he learned shipbuilding in a local dockyard.
The house presents two rooms with reconstructed interiors, portraits of the Tsar and his wife, drawings, and an icon of the Saviour Not-Made-by-Hands, which Peter the Great would always take with him in military campaigns. The interactive programme will tell you about the Grand Embassy, Peter the Great’s diplomatic mission to Western Europe, and the whole route can be traced on the map.
The museum halls house themed displays and reconstructed interiors dedicated to the former estate residents’ life. Entering the museum feels like a trip to the 16th century, and it is worth a visit for all Russian history lovers.
The family estate of the Romanov boyars was reconstructed in the 19th century on Emperor Alexander I’s orders. Following this, all the emperors from Alexander II to Nicholas II visited the chambers to pay tribute to their ancestry. The restoration work conducted under architect F. Richter’s supervision brought back the chambers’ original look of an affluent boyar house of the 16-17th centuries. The museum was opened here in 1859. Both the lost architectural elements and the interiors of the building were reconstructed: glazed tile stoves, a wooden additional storey called gornitsa, the “boyar’s study”, the “dining chamber”, and others. The work conducted by F. Richter pioneered scientific building restoration in Moscow.
At present, the Romanovs’ chambers are decorated with dynasty symbols: the Romanovs’ family coat of arms – a griffin – was restored on the northern and the eastern facades by architect A. Chernousov. The genuinely historic exhibits impart a unique character to the museum. Here you can see authentic 16-17th century weapons (harquebuses, spikes, and cavalry swords), trunks, books and engravings, stationery and household objects such as furniture, clothes, fabric, trinkets, children’s toys, and silverware.
In 1630-s the merchant Grigory Nikitnikov built a church on his own estate. This was one of Moscow's most wealthy merchants in Moscow, legend has it he would lend money to the tsar himself. He invited the best architects and artists of the time. Among them are Armory painters Simeon Ushakov, Yakov Kazanets and Osip Vladimirov. The frescos of the church include unusual and unconventional depictions of scenes from the Apocalypse. The Trinity Church in Nikitniki served both as a parish church and the private burial place of Nikitnikov family.
In 1920 the church was closed. It was later turned into a branch of the Medieaval russian Art museum. In 1991 the decision was taken to return it to the Russian Orthodox Church. However it hasn't happened yet.
The church is standing on top of the hill. In old times it could be seen from afar. Today you would hardly find it – it's blocked by higher buildings from each side. Nearby is the Presidential Property Management Department, that's why in front of the church there're so many official cars.
It has become not only the physical node but also the cultural hub of the central heritage district of Moscow. The numerous lanes that branch out from the main street commemorate the many trailblazers of this famous theatre. The names of these celebrities are inscribed in memorial plaques, embedded on stone monuments, making the atmosphere of this side of Old Moscow even more remarkable.
The creative life of the Vakhtangov Theatre is inseparable from ancient Russian culture, but at the same time it sets its gaze on the future. While the Theatre’s creativity remains committed to the legacy of its founder, the outstanding director and personality Evgeny Vakhtangov, it is this very legacy that reminds us of the necessity to be alive to the challenges of modern-day life.
The work of this Theatre is a combination of brilliant form and deep content. Here you can experience a variety of genres, from classic tragedy to mischievous vaudeville. In all these genres you will witness powerful Russian actors.
The Vakhtangov Theatre has conquered the hearts of millions of people in Russia, Paris, London, Vienna, Venice, Athens, Stockholm, Prague, Warsaw, Berlin, Budapest, Madrid, and many other foreign cities.
The Vakhtangov Theater is already 95 years old. The Theatre’s secret lies in the spirit of its young actors and stage-directors (both well-established and new-comers), its ambition to deal with complex moral issues, and its desire to awaken warm human feelings in the audience.
The world-famous masterpiece of the architectural avant-garde, the house was originally designed and built in 1927-1929 as 'an experimental cylindrical house' to test out Konstantin Melnikov’s very own concept of mass construction of residential estate. The original layout, elegant spatial arrangement and smart engineering techniques made this masterpiece world famous. By words of Melnikov, the essence of the house is in 'even distribution of weight, light, air and heat'. Being of a unique architectural form, it still looks modern while keeping authentic memorial atmosphere of the 20th century, reflecting the tragic life of this maverick architect.
It consists of two overlapping cylindrical towers, nine meters in diameter each, without any internal load-bearing columns or walls. The wooden ceilings were formed by a rectangular grid of flat planks. In his house Melnikov employed more than sixty 'honeycomb' hexagonal windows providing very special dispersed light. One bedroom was designed for the whole family, partitioned by wall screens.
The will of Viktor Melnikov, the son of the architect Konstantin Melnikov, calls for preservation of the House and creation of the museum of the Melnikovs, father and son, on its premises. The will was executed with the State Melnikovs Museum establishment in 2014 as a branch of the Schusev State Museum of Architecture, which now operates the house. ‘Our mission is clear: to open Melnikov’s heritage to the world’, says Pavel Kuznetsov, director of the State Melnikovs Museum.
According to the testament of Viktor Melnikov the State Melnikovs Museum will consist of two parts: permanent exposition and storage of archives at Vozdizhenka, 5/25 (to be opened in 2016) and the Melnikov House itself at Krivoarbatsky, 10. Guided tour will link both parts of the Museum in future.
The building also incorporates a 9-story apartment block facing Moskva River, designed by the same architects in 1938 and completed in 1940. Originally build in stern early Stalinist style, with wet stucco wall finishes, it was re-finished in terra cotta panels in line with the main tower and acquired ornate pseudo-Gothic crowns over its 12-story raised corners and center tower. By the end of World War II, the side wing was converted to multi-family kommunalka (community) housing, in a contrast to the planned elite status of the main tower.
The main tower, of a conventional steel frame structural type, has a hexagonal cross-section with three side wings (18-storeys, including two mechanical floors). While it is not exceptionally tall or massive, the «upward surge» of five stepped-up layers, from a flat 9-storey side wing to the spire, produce a visual image of a far superior structure.
The structure hides behind itself a so-called «Shvivaya Gorka», a hill with historical architecture and a maze of steeply inclined streets. Chechulin was initially criticized for complete disregard of this area, but his bureaucratic influence brushed off any criticisms.
Notable residents of the building include:
The hotel is located on the axis of the third side of the "Three Stations" square and it is an organic part of the ensemble, which accented with use of Russian architecture of the XVII and XVIII centuries motifs in the decoration of the façade. Each station was designed in its own variety of the national style. The interior decoration of the hotel is also permeated with the ancient Russian architecture spirit. Stylized elements of Moscow baroque style were used to decorate the interior.
The hotel was restored in 2005-2008. And this was also the first comprehensive restoration of Stalin’s era high-rise buildings in Moscow.
The entire 136-meter-high facades of the hotel, loss tiles and white stone details were cleared with compressed air and restored. Fragmentary replacement and restoration of external structures and coatings of the octagonal spire of the hotel was conducted.
Interiors of the hotel were furbished, in particular the ceiling and wall moldings, marble floors and stair treads , painted panels on the ceiling of the restaurant , monumental painting in front of the restaurant, casino and above the main staircase , unique lighting fixtures , including two 20 -meter bronze chandeliers.
Tall enough as it is, at 138 metres (453 feet), the tower at Ploschad Krasnye Vorota (Krasnye Vorota Square) looks even taller as it stands at the highest point of Sadovoye Koltso. This administrative and residential building, designed by Alexey Dushkin and Boris Mezentsev, was constructed in adverse conditions concurrently with the construction of Krasnye Vorota Metro station. The tower constantly threatened to collapse into the Metro pit. To make sure that never happened, the tower was built on pre-frozen ground and at an incline. Some of the best engineering talent was recruited to design the tower and calculate the incline. The same trick with the freezing of the ground was used when they built the Moscow Metro. The tower replaced an old neighbourhood. Poet Mikhail Lermontov was born in one of the houses there.
Hotel Ukraina that opened on May 25, 1957 was recognized as the largest hotel in Europe. For many years it was dubbed as “Moscow home” for guests from all around the globe. After half a century in service, the hotel required a thorough overhaul and complete modernization. The work continued for three years, and then, on April 28, 2010 a new, modern hotel was opened in the legendary building: Radisson Royal, Moscow. The hotel combines the best features of two eras: the grand imperial style and the moving aesthetics of the socialist society exist here in seamless harmony with modern “smart comfort” and global traditions of five-star service.
Extraordinary architecture and superior style of the hotel have attracted remarkable persons: the book of distinguished guests is filled with autographs of such stars as, e.g., Marcello Mastroianni, Robert De Niro, Michel Legrand, Patricia Kaas, Cesaria Evora, Zachary Quinto, Dominic Cooper, Michael Flatley, Audrey Tautou, Sophie Loren, Joaquin Cortés, Ralph Fiennes, Francis Ford Coppola, Ving Rhames, Sean Bean, Christian Slater, Adrien Brody, Ronaldo, Zinedine Zidane, Cristiano Ronaldo and other celebrities.
The first sketches for the planning of Smolenskaya Square for the new building were created in 1946. In January 1947 the resolution on construction of skyscrapers in Moscow appeared, and work started. Several variants of the project, with differing numbers of floors, were considered. From the right (southern) wing of the building a new prospect of Smolenskaya Square was supposed to begin: the Palace of Soviets, 42 meters wide. It was proposed to implant it straight through the side-streets and living quarters between Prechistenka and Sivtsev Vrazhek. The Arbat was going to be turned into a large street 33 meters wide.
On 20 January 1949 the technical design plan for the building was approved, and in April the authors were already awarded the Stalin (State) Prize of the 1st degree. The width of the new building’s façade along Smolenskaya Square was set at 160 meters. The height of the central part of the building was 27 floors, with 15 at the wings and 6 at the side units. The creators thought that this kind of tiered structure complied with the traditions of Russian architecture. The pedestal base and lower sections of the MID’s walls are clad in red Karlahti granite, the portals of the entrance from Smolenskaya Square are done in gray Korostyshev granite and Karabcheyev limestone, and the main mass is coated with ceramic blocks.
The MID building was put into operation in the summer of 1953; later the farther section of the right-side unit was added on. A large number of the blueprints for the building were subsequently used when constructing the House of Science and Culture in Warsaw, a structure notoriously unloved in Poland.
It was not originally proposed to top the MID building with a spire. Instead the architects planned to put a range of complex battlements with obelisks on the corners. A legend exists to explain the appearance of the spire. Supposedly, when the construction was at the final stage, Stalin was driven past the site. Looking over the construction, he remarked that it was characteristic of Russian architecture for structures to terminate in a point. Immediately, the spire was constructed. To make the construction easier, it was made out of metal, painted to match the color of the building.
It is possible that the spire was an attempt to give the building a more individual character. Without the spire, it is too similar to US administrative buildings of the first half of the 20th century – which was considered unacceptable.
It is actually one of the 7 towers that define the skyline of Moscow, which explains their name in the English language – Seven Sisters. Interestingly enough, this name is not really used by the local people and the buildings of this period are simply called Stalinskie Vysotki (Stalinist skyscrapers). The style of the tower is defined as neoclassicism, but people most often refer to such style as “wedding-cake” because of the way these types of buildings are shaped.
The building, which has about 450 apartments, was initially intended for aviation industry elite of the Soviet Union. However, nowadays anyone who has enough money has the opportunity to rent an apartment in this incredibly prestigious place. These days, besides apartments, there are several stores, cinema and even a bowling club.
The architect thought over even such nuances as the leisure activities of the tenants. On the roof of house was to be placed public dining room, a leisure zone with skating rink and an observation platform, while in the basement was a “domestic” theater. The Moscow authorities granted permission. In one year the building was completed and the decoration work began.
In the end the house came out with 10 stories after causing anxiety in the authorities regarding fire safety. In June 1913 fire convoys received a signal from the house and raced to it, but it happened that the fire was local. The fire was extinguished; the panic proved to be false. In spite of this, Nirnzee, nevertheless, thought over a question of additional fire safety measures.
The First World War destroyed the plans Nirnzee's plans for additional architectural creations. Being of German origin and uncomfortable while Russia was at war, Nirnzee decided to sell the house in 1915 to banker Dmitriy Rubenstein.
By the way, purchase managed to Rubenstein into the legendary sum - 2 million 100 thousand rubles. But indeed only 3 years ago house cost about 200 thousand rubles! In July 1918, when left socialist revolutionaries mutinied, without desiring to suffer new government, house 10 was designated as one of the most important objects - it was very convenient combat position. But the mutiny did not succeed, the Soviet regime triumphed, but as a reminder of the combat in the alley in 1987 rifle shot from the time of the revolution was found stuck in the walls.
Today, there are two observation platforms on the tower: an open platform (works only in the warm season) and a closed platform, part of the floor of which is made of durable glass. Having enjoyed a dizzying panorama from a 350-meter height, you can visit the legendary revolving "The Seventh Heaven" restaurant. Tourists here are offered numerous excursions, for instance, to the Museum of Ostankino Tower. But what enjoys the greatest popularity during the tours to the TV Center is the visits to TV studios of famous TV programs, the exhibition hall with television decorations, and a walk along the "Corridor of History" in the underground passage under Akademika Koroleva Street. Here you can buy unique souvenirs, such as pendants, key charms and magnets depicting the tower. Going down from the dizzy altitude, it is worth looking into the nearby Ostankino Estate Museum, which belonged to Count Sheremetev, as well as take a walk in the local park or visit the nearby VDNKh Expocenter.
In September 1812, the palace had another famous visitor. Petrovsky Palace was where Napoleon was hiding from the terrible fires that engulfed Moscow. "From here, all in thoughts, he looked at the terrible fire," the poet Alexander Pushkin wrote. "Napoleon's room" in the palace was preserved.
The building remained a royal residence until 1918. After the Revolution, the Petrovsky Palace was very lucky. Unlike many other imperial palaces in Moscow it was not reconstructed by the Bolsheviks. In 1923 the palace housed Zhukovsky Air Force Academy. Among the famous graduates are Yury Gagarin, Valentina Tereshkova, great aircraft designers Sergey Ilushin, Alexander Yakovlev, Artem Mikoyan.
In the 1990s the building was closed for reconstruction and the Academy abandoned the site. The palace was officially reopened in 2009 by Moscow Mayor Yuri Lushkov as the House of Receptions of the Government of Moscow. It will be used as a hotel for visiting dignitaries to Moscow and will host official receptions.
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