Gatchina

Gatchina

Gatchina is a wonderful picturesque city, located in the south- eastern part of St.Petersburg, 46 kilometers away from it. In this small city there are many palaces and landscapes that can be considered a real works of art. This small place in the world was built and decorated by talented masters, architectures, sculptors and gardeners, they created there a real piece of art that still didnt loose its beautiful nature.

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The first villa in Gatchina was built for Natalia Alekseevna, who was a sister of Peter 1, in 1708. Catherine 2 bought its place for Graf Orlov after death of Natalia Alekseevna. Graf Orlov appreciated her gift very much and at once started to invite famous russian and foreign achitecturers to build architectural palaces and parks there.

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The Palace that looks like a hunting house with towers was built by the project of famous italian achitect Antonio Rinaldi. Creation of Chemenskiy obelisk in honour of victory of russian sailers over turkish army in 1770 was also planned by Rinaldi. Park was designed in english style in accordance with modern requires of landscape design, and became one of the most wonderful parks.

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The Empress decided to bought the villa after the death of graf Orlov and gave it as a gift to her son Pavel Petrovich, who became later the Empreror Pavel 1. He changed the look of the villa and it started to look like a real camp. Pavel 1 asked an achitect Vinchencco Brenno to change the look of the Palace, to make it look like a middleaged castle with bridges and bastions.

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Instead of the field in front of the Palace appeared a military camp.There were spent marches by armies and taught soldiers and officers of Prussian army. Gathina started to be called a city officilally and even got its own emblem in 1796, when Pavel 1 became an Emperor. Since then the Palace got the functions of Emperor residence. After the death of Pavel there were no changes in a city, and in 1851 a monument to Peter 1 was located on the square in front of the Palace.

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In russian history of aviation Gatchina played an important role, here was opened the first air school and aeroclub, and on the military field aeromen showed their first flights.

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The architectural territory of Gatchina was not robbed after the October Revolution as it happened to many other historical places, later there was opened a museum. With the beginning of the Great Patriotic War many works of art from an artistic gallery of the Paalce were removed and brought abroad. In 1941 german army occupied its territories and the city was ruined, the Palace was destroyed,trees damages and pavillions were ruined with explosions.

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The reconstructionstarted after the war and lasted for many years, so the park and the palace were opened visiting again only in 1985.So after the Great Patriotic war the Palace became a museum where were gathered for more than 54.000 precious exhibits. It was possible to save 5th half of all the exhibits during the war with the help of museums workers.The Palace suffered a lot from bombing and the inner decoration was almost entirely ruined.

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Gathin’s gardens and picturesque parks are represented by its projects and rich with its flora, beuatiful kinds of trees. There are bridges, terraces, effective stone stairs, pavillion with an Eagle symbol on the Long Island, Venus pavillion on the island of Love, Wood orangery, Poultry house, Birch and Admiralty gates.

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Prioratskiy Palace is also unique with its look and architecture. It reminds a middleaged castle. In 1971- 1975 a unique Birch House was built in Gatchina, by its look it reminds a huge stack of wood. The main peculiarities of Gatchina represent parks and basins – White and  Silver lakes, Karpin Pond and its islands.

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At the presence of Alexander 2, Alexander 3 and Nikolay 2 till 1917 Gatchina was their favourite place of hunting. At the beginning of 20th century Gatchcna became a country villa and became a favoutrite place of rest for citizens of St.Petersburg. Later there developed social life, started to work organizations and societies, was opened the first theatre.

In the city appeared cars with high speed that moved on the lit streets, and in the sky appeared first military aeroplanes.

That is how citizens of Gatchina became the first spectators of new technologies in the 20th century.

The Field of Mars

The Field of Mars

The Field of Mars is the greatest memorial park in the center of St. Petersburg which occupies almost 90 thousand square meters. Majestic panorama of spacious square with a monument in honor of victims of the revolution ends with the Summer Garden in the South, the Michael Garden in the East, and Suvorov Square and Neva River in the North. The field originates in first years of the city itself.

The Field of Mars 1

In the beginning of the 18th century there was a swamp in place of today’s Field of Mars. Actually, the field received its contemporary name in 1805 for the first time. During a period of 1711-1716 the territory was used for holding of holidays, military festivals and marches. Lots of holidays were accompanied with fireworks that used to be called “poteshniye ogni” that is why the field was called the Poteshnoe Field. Under Catherine I the Great it was called “Caryzin Loug” (empress grassland) because her summer palace was placed there at that time. In 1805 a statue of famous Russian general Suvorov was set on the land and the field was named the Field of Mars. Some historians believe that it was called so because the statue depicted Suvorov wearing armor of an ancient war god Mars. In 1917 the fallen of February and October revolutionary actions were buried in the field. A year later it was renamed again in honor of the dead. The Mars Field turned into the Revolution square and a well-known memorial “Borzam Revoluzii” (in honor of fighters of the revolution). In 1942 during the time of the siege of the Second World Two the field was completely covered with vegetable gardens. At the end of the siege in 1944 the field was given its contemporary name. On November 6 of 1957 the first Eternal fire in the USSR was lighted in the center of the memorial “Borzam Revoluzii”.

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The mars field is an integral part of St. Petersburg which carries the spirit of history and traditions of the city.

Tauride Garden

Tauride Garden

The Tauride Garden came into existence along with the Tauride Palace, which was built in 1783-1789. This architectural complex became a memorial in honor of Russia’s victories in various wars at the end of the 18th century.

The garden was planned and designed by an English gardener William Gould. In place of Samoroyka River builders dug two ponds that were connected by canals with each other. The ponds were filled with water from the Ligovskiy Channel and fish.

Neva River

In the South part of the big pond two islands were created and one of them was planted with trees. In the North a high hill was built with ground that was left after the digging. The islands were connected by two bridges, one of which was made by Ivan Kulibin. He designed this bridge earlier for Neva River but it wasn’t mounted then, so Kulibin used the same construction but ten times smaller for the garden (in 1816 it was dismantled in order to free a way for water transport).

Tauride Palace

At the second half of the 19th century the Tauride Garden was opened for public. A little bit later during winters a skating-rink and slides were frequently visited by citizens. At the time of the Second World War plenty of bombs were dropped on the streets of St. Petersburg, the Tauride Garden couldn’t escape. Right after the siege kitchen gardens of children’s hospitals were placed on the territory of the park. Not long after reconstruction works were started under the guidance of Russian architect D. Goldgor. The process was finished in 1958. Since 1960s the garden was actively used as a place for organization of children’s leisure, therefore lots of sports classes, various clubs were organized. So, later the park needed the second reconstruction which occurred at the end of the 20th century and lasted 4 years until 2001.

Nowadays Tauride Garden is a historical monument that attracts lots of people every day by its beauty.

Michael Garden

 

Michael Garden

The Michael Garden is one of the most beautiful parks of St. Petersburg which occupies almost a hundred square meters of land. It’s always calm and quiet in spite of the fact that the garden is rather close to one of the main arteries of the city Nevskiy Avenue and also there is another thoroughfare Sadovaya Street. The secret is in location of the park. It is segregated from noisy streets by the Russian Museum, the largest museum of Russian art in the World.

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The Michael garden arose at the same time with the Summer Garden and in the beginning of the 17th century people called it the 3rd summer garden. In place of current Rossi’s Pavilion there was not great Ekaterininskiy Palace, the building with a golden spire on the top. In some historical document this building is written as “Zolotyie Horomy” (Golden Mansion). The Palace itself was luxurious but a layout of the garden was rather simple and was similar to Moscow’s estates of the 17th century that distinguished with its gardens. Apple and other fruit trees were planted; greenhouses, stables, warehouses and many other buildings were built. A big fountain which was placed in front of the main facade was decorated with gold-filled bas-relief, vases and marble statues.

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Dominant figure in the whole architectural complex is the Michael Palace, one of the best creations of the architect. The main facade has a colonnade which rises up to the second floor. 12-column loggia is crowned with an attic which includes a sculptural group. Architects declined the idea of straight paths and made them meandering, instead of balanced ponds they create ponds with natural coasts, as a result the garden looked like a landscape.

At the present, the Michael garden changed its meaning completely. Originally it was planned to be a residence of the Emperor but now it is a rest place for people and a memorial of landscape architecture

Peterhof (Petrodvorets)

Peterhof (Petrodvorets)1

Peterhof (Petrodvorets) is a country residence of russian emprerors located in 29 kilometers from St. Petersburg, Russia. Peterhof is called a “capital of fountains”. There is a wonderful view you can observe when you are coming to Peterhof from the sea side: a huge Palace is situated at the higest point of 16 meters terrace.A huge cascade sparkles with golden sculptures and silver fountain streams at her slope.

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In the middle of the water basin and in front of the casacde there is a fountain named “Samson”, further the water goes to the Gulf. The Gulf is the one of the oldest buildings in Peterhof,  it was created by Peter 1 and was built in 1715 during the building of Upper Gardens. The Gulf became transport artillery and a front entrance in Peterhof, but when in 1735 the Samson Fountain was built in the centre of the basin, it got complicated to use the Gulf.

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Peter 1 suggested to built 22 fountains, that could look like in the stories of  Aesop, with sculptures along the Gulf. But later it was decided to make the fountains in a view of vases. In 1854-1860 the old vases were removed and there were left 14 fountains.Now their powerful streams creat a huge connonade that leads to the Great Cascade. The Gulf is considered to be one of the best attracts of the Peterhof, known for its beauty. It is decorated with granite and gold, but moreover the Gulf depicts an artistic and georaphical connection between the residence and the water.

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The Gulf divides the Park into two parts: the eastern and western. In the eastern part there are situated many splendid attracts, such as: “Monplaisir”, “Rome Fountains”, “Pyramid Fountains”, “A chess mountain”, “The Sun”. In the western there are situated the “Hermitage”, “Marly Palace”, a “cascade Golden Mountain”.
Peter 1 chose this place for building of Peterhof because while his researches in the surroundings he found several water streams, that is how the creation of water system was given to Vasiliy Tuvolkov to charge over the building. Tuvolkov was a russian master educated in Holland and France.

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In 1721 under the guidance of Tuvolkov were built channels and sluice-gates,by them from Ropshinskie visoty water moved by itself to the Upper Gardens basins, so that is why here it was possible to built only small fountains, though in the Lower Park,that was situated in the foot of the terrace, the water moved from the 16 meters height down to the basin of the Upper Garden and fell down with lots of streams making a huge fountain the park.
Nowadays is still greatly appreciated the talent of Peter 1, who found all the water resources, the water system works till now that tells us about his skills.

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Peterhof is also known not only by its fountains, but also by a great quantity of Palaces and Museums. Museums are situated as on the territory of the Lower Park and above it. The Hermitage is situated in the eastern part of the Lower Park on the seaside of the Gulf. In terms of french language The Hermitage means – “a hut of a desert-dweller”. The front appearance of the Hermitage is depicted in its elegance. Its building started in 1721 by the order of Peter 1.

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The Marly Palace is another beautiful building and a near gorgeous Marly Basin looks like a huge mirror that is divided into 4 sections. Building of the Marly Basin and its ponds started in 1719-1720. At first it was built as a one floor building, but by the order of Peter 1, there was added one more floor that gave the building an amazing balance.
The Great Palace is the largest and the most famous building in Peterhof, it is situated in the very center of the park. Near the Great Palace is situated the Great Basin, it is a balanced building built with three floors with galleries and with golden domes that stretches for almost 300 meters.

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The look of the Great Palace today is a result of repairing and transformation of the building during 2 centuries. The Cottage Palace – is an architecture building of Alexandria Park in Petrodvorets. It is located on the Upper terrace in the south-eastern part of the park. From here you can observe the Finland Gulf and St.Petersburg surroundings. It was built in 1826-1829 by the project of Menelas architect in a gothic style.
14 September of 1947 is a historical moment in Peterhof, in front of the Great Cascade took its place golden bronze figures of Lions with open mouth. Peterhof impresses with its architecture, sculpter, harmony, art and nature.