Nevsky Prospekt

 St. Petersburg

Nevsky's Photographs
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Photographs © N. Harvey 1999-2012
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A wintery view across Palace Square  

A wintery view of the Winter Palace south façade as seen when looking across from the beginning of the Prospekt.
The palace was the official residence of many Russian rulers, but is now home to the State Hermitage Museum which is the world's second largest museum. It is said that it would take between 8 and 9 years to view each of the exhibits housed here and in the adjoining Hermitage buildings.

closer view of the Winter Palace  

A closer view of the Winter Palace with Grandfather Frost Ded Moroz (pronounced 'Dead Morose!'), and his granddaughter Snegurochka. As seen on December 25th 2001.

This is the fourth such palace on this site and was constructed between 1754-62 to the designs of Bartolomero Rastrelli.

Winter Palace and the Alexander Column  

The Winter Palace and Alexander Column on a late spring morning. The palace was built in a Highly Developed Baroque style to the designs of B. F. Rastrelli and completed in 1762. It is now equally well known as the main building of the Hermitage (Ermitage) Museum.

The Alexander Column was designed by Auguste de Monterrand to celebrate victory over Napoleon. The one-piece, 600 ton column has no supporting devices and is held on its pedestal only by its own weight.

Dom 2, Nevsky  

Number 2 Nevsky Prospekt. The first building on the northern 'sunny' side of the street (c1765), and built by Yuri Felten originally belonged to the Free Economic Society (Volnoe Ekonominichesko Obshestvo), which was a non-governmental economic research institution founded and funded by Catherine II. In 1844 it was taken over for use by the General Staff of the Imperial Army and rebuilt by I. Chernik to merge with their already huge building facing the Winter Palace. Currently believed to be in use by an inane military press club.

Dom number 4  

Number 4, This bland classicist structure dating from the 1770’s is still vaguely remembered as Generalski knizhny magazin (Generals Bookstore), and referred to as Generals store or Generals shop. Oddly, number 11 Nevsky is also known by this name.
It was originally built for the Perkins family of merchants and the Imperial General Staff purchased the structure in the 1840s and later two more floors were built above the original three stories. The General Staff operated its own publishing company, which printed maps, cartography manuals, text books, army handbooks, books on tactics, strategy and general military history (General Staff also possessed the largest military-related library in Europe as well the world, with manuscripts and books in all major European languages from Middle Ages until contemporary times. Contemporary times being late 19th century. The library was located in the General Staff Building).

Dom number 6  

Number 6, In the 18th century the Perkin family owned five Nevsky Prospekt buildings in a row. This is one of their houses. Built 1770 by architect M. A. Liven. By the end of the 19 century the building contained fashionable Bertrand shops which were located above the first or ground floors. The first floor had a curious shop called Optika i Mechanika (meaning Optics and Mechanics), run by the Trading Company of A. Bourchard of St. Petersburg. Bourchard’s was also a manufacturer of gramophones. Before WWI and the Bolshevick takeover that followed it, 6 Nevsky was famous as the place to buy gramophones, phonographs, records, mechanical appliances and high quality hobby optics. Bourchard gramophones and optical instruments are sought after by Russian antique collectors and from examples seen to date they are generally more expensive than other Russian and contemporary foreign brands.

Dom 8, 10, & 12 Nevsky Prospekt  

Numbers 8 & 10, two of the oldest houses on the Prospekt, dating from the 1760's, as viewed from ul. Malaya Morskaya (the street where Tchaikovsky died in 1893). They were built for an English family called Perkins by Andrei Kvasov in accordance with the strict local guidelines of the time, which had been set by the Commission on Masonry Construction. No.8 was sold by John Perkins and altered in 1830. Currently it houses the Lavka Khudozhnicov, a shop where local artists can exhibit and sell their work. This building was designed by A. V. Kvassov.

Dom 8 in the winter gloom of noember 2008.  

Number 8, This is Ivan Perkin's townhouse from the 1770s. Ivan Perkin was a notary public in St. Petersburg. His brother, Peter Perkin was an affluent merchant and the owner of several Nevsky Properties. 8 Nevsky has not changed its appearance or its interior layout in any major way since the 18 century and like the number 10 next to it, this private family house provides a good illustration of how ordinary Nevsky Prospekt buildings or houses looked in the 1770s and 1780s.

A confusing Plaque on Dom 10  

Number 10. 'Where' is this!

Dom 10  

Number 10: This is reportedly Nevsky's oldest unaltered building, although the roofline was changed a century ago. The house dates from the 1750s and it was a private residence most likely designed by architect Andrei Kvasov (1720-1770). The house was originally built for Pyotr Mihailovich Perkin, a merchant whose brother, Ivan Perkin owned the next house (8 Nevsky Prospket). In 1773 Perkins sold this residence (10 Nevsky) to Ivan Danilovich, a state collegiate councilman or advisor. In 1850 Franz San Galli bought the building and he, and then his heir, remained the owners of the property until the putsch of 1917. DHL, the international courier service are the latest organization to associate themselves with this building, by taking up office space on the first floor. Bank of Tokyo is a new business here.

House number 12  

Number 12: the way it looks now is the work of William van der Gucht , a turn of the century art nouveau and neo-classicist architect and a Russian despite the very Dutch name. Reconstructed for the banking house of Junker and Co. and dated from 1910-11. What’s inside and underneath, if anything is left of it, was once a Neo-classical structure from the late 1700s with an interesting history on its own. In 1765 the first building was designed by the architect Andrei Kvasov for it’s then owner, the wife of Colonel A. Tolstoy. She had the building until 1777 when she sold it to a Karl Friedrich Heidemann. Since circa 1816 until 1880s it's owner was the Kalergis family. They rented the building out to General Miloradovich who is remembered as a hero of the Great Patriotic War of 1812. On December 14, 1825, the day known as the Decembrist Uprising, while trying to appeal to the rebellious troops in the Senate Square, Miloradovich was rather cowardly murdered by Pavel Kachowski who fired his pistol from the crowd. Kachowski was later strung up together with five other ringleaders.

School No.210 at 14 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 14: This grey building was built in the late 1930's (architect Boris Rubanenko), and was known as school No. 210. It still proudly displays a reminder from the 900 day siege of Leningrad on a simple blue plaque with stenciled words saying "Citizens! This side of the street is more dangerous during artillery bombardment."

The 18th century house that previously stood on this site was demolished in 1915 to make way for yet another bank, but the project was never started.

The sign giving a stark reminder of the Seige of Leningrad.  

This is the wartime sign mentioned above.

House number 16  

Number 16, The building on the northern corner of Nevsky Prospekt and Bolshaia Morskaya is a late 19 century reincarnation of a large mansion. It first belonged to General Illarion Ovtsyn and was originally built in 1766 by architect Andrei Kvasov. Twenty years later, in 1786 John Pickersgill, a merchant who also had retail shops in 1 Nevsky Prospekt, opened another Anglyiskii magazin (or English shop) at this address. In 1815 the shop was sold to Constantine Nichols and William Plinke (both Russian citizens despite their English names). Their company was called Nichols and Plinke. Alexander Pushkin patronized the establishment. In 1844 another partner, Robert Cohen, joined the business. By 1870s Cohen took over the business and the building. Russian made silverware or silver flatware branded by Magazin Anglais of Nichols and Plinke, especially pieces made before 1860s, are quite valuable. Their dinner silver spoon, fork and knife, a complete setting for one person, from 1840 fetches from 8000 to 12000 euros (or dollars) on the market. The brand emblem is N & P.

Home of the The Literaturnaya Cafe at number 18  

Number 18. Originally built on the corner of the Moyka embankment in 1705 for the Dutch Admiral Kruis, it was rebuilt in 1741 by Mikhail Zementsov and remodeled again in 1812-15 by V. P. Stasov for A. Kotomin. Later still it was purchased by the Swiss bakers Wulf and Beranzhee who opened a confectioners here. It has since undergone major reconstruction, with its central portico being removed. The columns seen on the right are where the Literary (Literaturnaya) Café opened in 1985. This room has had a long association with writers and both Pushkin and Dostoevsky were frequent visitors, along with the poet Mikhail Lermontov. Photo taken early in the year 2000.
Sadly the cafe/restaurant which has been operating from this address for the last 'x' number of years consider their business to be elitist and unless you are wearing a Rolex or better, you will not be made very welcome. However if you are willing to pay over the odds for a less than mediocre fare, go for it!

The Dutch Church building  

Number 20, is the former Dutch Church building. Paul Jacot designed this Neo-Classical structure which was built between 1831-7. The actual church which was closed in 1926 is preserved and still sitting in the center of this complex although it is unlikely to revert to its original function. The caisson cupola of the church is barely visible against the colorless sky as it is viewed here over the Politseysky (police) Bridge, above the frozen Moika River. Nowadays the wings either side of the portico house various businesses, stores, a Subway food outlet and the city's main chess club, whilst the 2nd and 3rd floors are residential.

Also located here is Dachniki Soviet Café. Dachniki offers an authentic Russian dining experience at reasonable prices in a very Russian setting.

Dom 22 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 22 is a symmetrical twin of number 24 and it has two good restaurants on the first floor as well as the Bristol Bar and the Lavka Smirdina, a popular bakery. Original building believed to have been built in 1730, but like its twin, it was reconstructed to the designs of G. R. Zollinkofer around 1830 and was first used as housing for the Petrikirchen clergymen. Later known as the Smyrdin Publishing House where Gogol and Pushkin had their works published.

For nearly 80 years these two buildings were three-storeyed but in 1909, two further floors were added.

The Lutheran Church  

The Lutheran Church of St. Peter & St. Paul sandwiched between the twin buildings of 22 & 24 Nevsky Prospekt. Built in a Neo-Romanesque style which is rare in St. Petersburg, it was constructed between 1833-38 to the designs of Alexander Bryullov and it served the local German community prior to the revolution. In Soviet times persecutions and frequent arrests culminated with the pastor and his son being arrested on Christmas Eve 1937 and shot to death shortly afterwards. The building was then used as a vegetable store until it was converted into a swimming pool complex in the 1950's. After Perestroika it was handed back to the Lutheran movement and is now holding services again. Behind the church is the oldest school in the city, the Peterschule, founded in 1710.

Dom 24 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 24. Russia's first cafe was opened in this building in 1841 and was known as Dominics (after the name of its owner Dominique Riz-a-Port), until it was closed in 1917. After world War II the cafe opened again, but then selling ice-cream. Arguably the best Internet Cafe in the city, the 24 hour Quo Vadis was located here but it has now moved along the street to number 76.

Malaya Konyushennaya ul.  

Pedestrianized at a cost of 4 million dollars (the first such street in the city center), ul. Malaya Konyushennaya (the Smaller Stables street) has a distinct Swedish influence. The Swedish consulate is here, along with the Swedish St. Catherine's (again!) Church and the Swedish flavored Hotel Korona. Pride of place in the center of the street goes to the recent Gogol monument erected in 1998. During the summer months at the Nevsky end of this street there are usually several souvenir stalls selling Matryoshka dolls.

Monument to N.V.Gogol by Mikhail Belov  

Nikolai Gogol (1809-1852) the prominent witty writer and merciless satirist who wrote Nevsky Prospekt lived nearby before going abroad. This modern monument to him by sculptor Mikhail Belov and architect Vladimar Vasilkovsky was donated to the city in 1997. Initially not accepted by the public as it was considered 'kitsch' (poor taste), it has since become a magnet for many Gogol fans.

Dom 26  Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 26: Architect Luigi Rusca lived here in the early 1800s although nothing remains visible from the 18th century building. The appearance of the present large eclectic structure dates from 1873, when Norwegian-born entrepreneur Hermann Hansen commissioned St. Petersburg architect Vasiliy Kenell to build a new retail and office center which he completed in 1875. Despite its eclectic coquetry, even hints of baroque, newest (for 1870s that is) technology was used throughout construction. Supports are all steel, steel beams separate floors and walls and partitions are made of concrete. First floors of 26 Nevsky had luxury retail shops, ateliers, tailors salons, restaurant, and operational branches of Moscow Commercial Bank and Azov Don Commercial. Roomy operational halls were paneled in marble and the famous firm of San Galli designed and built a special safe. Upper floors were let out as hotel style furnished rooms. Between 1882 and 1891 the building housed Russia’s first public telephone exchange, also designed by Vasiliy Kenell, a trendy architect noted for the city’s circus building. In 1912 architect Karl Karlovich Schmidt altered the old (1870s) interior of the public spaces and redesigned them in Art Nouveau style, which by 1912 was already on the way out.

Dom 26 & 28, Nevsky Prospekt.  

Numbers 26-28, Dom Knigi being the building on the right and the irrepressible Irina Tchij standing in the foreground. The photo was taken by standing across the street in front of the colonnade of Kazan Cathedral.

Dom 28, side view of the former Singer building.  

Number 28 is Dom Knigi, St. Petersburg's largest book store since having been taken over two years after the Bolshevik Revolution. Several local publishing houses also have their offices here. From it's construction in 1904 by P. Syuzor until 1917 it was the German owned Russian HQ of America's Singer Sewing Machine Co. The glass globe on the roof, the Singer trademark, covered a small restaurant. A major transformation of this long standing business is expected soon as the new landlord seeks to increase revenue. Major internal renovations commenced late in 2004 and the Dom Knigi business has scaled down their working area since moving back into the building after an enforced evacuation whilst the restructuring work took place. photo by Filip De Bont

Khram 'Spas na krovi', the Church of the Saviour on the Blood  

Between Numbers 28 and 30, the bridge over the Canal Griboedova offers a splendid view of the city's most exotic edifice, the Church on Spilled Blood which was begun in 1882 on the exact spot where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated. It was decreed that this church's tabernacle should be built on the very spot where his blood stained the cobblestones, hence its name and the fact it protrudes slightly into the canal. It was designed by Alfred Parland (Russian despite the name) and Ignatiy Malyshev who won the commission after a national competition was held.

Dom 30, Nevsky Prospekt Metro  

Number 30, alongside the Moika is the entrance for the Nevsky Prospekt/Gostinyy Dvor Metro stations and home of The Philharmonic Chamber Hall (Glinka Hall) on the second floor. Converted from a former private palace, by P. Jacquot as a private house in 1830 for wealthy music lover V. Engelhardt, this was the city's main concert hall in the early 19th century, when the Philharmonic Society organized concerts with outstanding musicians from around Western Europe. The pianist Anton Rubinstein made his professional debut here in 1843. For over 50 years the Discount-Loan Bank, founded by Baron Alexander Ginsburg, was also in this building. The building received a direct hit during the Blockade and it was during the course of reconstruction that the entrance to the Metro was incorporated.

Dom 32, Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 32: Both 32 Nevsky and 34 Nevsky were built 1751-1753 as three storey flanking "houses” of St. Catherine’s Roman Catholic Cathedral by Pavel Trezini some ten years before the church was actually constructed. Tresini’s houses were to be baroque twins, but instead became a testimony to the eighteenth century's fast changing architectural fashions. Just 25 years later both buildings’ facades were redesigned by Antonio Rinaldi in a Neo-classical style. Then to capitalize on the rising value of real estate architect Alexander Klewsinski was asked to design two further floors for each building and these were added in 1894 to complement Rinaldi's style. 32 Nevsky housed a large Roman Catholic library, a Catholic school , as well as the city’s Catholic orphanage. 32 also had a special guest house; Architect Vincenzo Brenna, painter Alessandro Peresinotti and sculptor Paolo Triscorni all lived here in the late 1700s. In the mid 19th century this was also the address of a specialty chocolate store and of M. I. Bernhard’s musical instruments shop. Now Lufthansa have their city office here.

St. Catherine's Catholic Church in January 2000  

Number 32-34, is the Neo-classical Roman Catholic Catherine of Alexandria Church (Kostyol Svyatoy Yekateriny), which was built between 1762 & 82 to the designs of master architect J-B. Vallin de la Mothe and completed by his assistant A. Rinaldi. Stanislaw August Poniatowski, the last king of Poland was entombed here in 1798. This church was once the focal point for all the Catholic community before the Communists closed it for 57 years. However it now holds masses again in Russian, English and Polish. Also it is the location for an open air all-weather art market where oil paintings, prints, portraits, and caricatures drawn on the spot are available.

Dom 34  

Number 34, was known for its jewelry shops, - E. Kortmans and E. Burchards , M. Belawski’s Photographic Studio and W. K. Freundlich’s Gardening supplies. It was also the Petersburg branch address of Commercial Bank in Warsaw.  In the Soviet era 34 Nevsky had one of city’s largest music record stores. It occupied the entire first floor and was renowned for its particularly good collection of classical music. The record store is gone, replaced by several clothing shops. The largest among them is Delta Sport, a sports clothing and accessories retailer. The rest of the building is now occupied by yet another business center. The right side of the courtyard (behind 34 Nevsky and to the right of the church) has a reeking mobile toilet with old woman collecting the “15 Ruble fare.” According to rumors it will soon be replaced by something more permanent.

Dom 36, the Hotel Europa  

Number 36, Arguably the best hotel in Russia! There has been a hotel on this site since 1830, but this one first opened its doors in 1875 and in the time of the Tsars, it was known as the Hotel de l'Europe. Because of the rising popularity of the hotel and the demand for rooms, a 5th floor was added in 1908. Completely refurbished between 1989 & 1991, it was reopened with its present name of the Grand Hotel Europe. It has over 300 rooms and suites, many of which have provided plush accommodation for foreign monarchs and several international dignitaries. The shaded part of the building is actually the front entrance and has the address of 1/7 Mikhailovskaya Ulitsa.

Dom 38 taken in the 1960's  

Number 38, (taken mid 1960s): Originally built by architect Michael Zemtsov in the early 1730s as the city mansion for Nikolai, the court chamberlain. Early in the 1800s the building became the property of A. S, Bartasheva. She commissioned a visual change from dated baroque to then popular classicism. Later the building was sold to Countess Natalia Stroganova, who had the mansion converted to apartments. In 1834-1839 the building underwent substantial change; visually it was merged with another structure on Mikhailovskaya Street, esthetically making one composition from Nevsky to Mikhailovskaya Square (St. Michael’s Square) and incorporating the newly constructed Assembly of Nobility building. The ensemble was the work of Carlo Rossi, although the on-ground architectural supervision and the technical aspects of the projects were handled by Pavel Jacot. Nikolai Gogol lived in this building in 1839. He stayed at the apartment of P. A. Pletnev, who was the dean of St. Petersburg University and publisher of Sovremennik (or The Contemporary) literary magazine.

Dom 38 in 2006  

Number 38, (Photo taken 2006): Duchess E. S. Meshcherskaya owned this building during the 1850s and 1860s and in 1869 sold it to the Control and Loan Bank. From 1881 until nationalization of 1917-1918 this building was the St. Petersburg headquarters of the Volga-Kama Commercial Bank. From the same year, architect Prang redesigned the first floor for banking needs and made an additional structure in the inner courtyard. In 1898 Leontii Benois redesigned the structure again, enriched the façade (as he did on or rather to Gostiny Dvor) by adding Beaux-Arts embellishments, changed some interiors, and most importantly covered interior court yard with a glass roof. Now the atrium of the 38 Nevsky became the bank’s main operational room. Similarly to Gostiny Dvor and 36 Nevsky, this building façade was renovated in 1948 under direction of architect I. G. Kapzug. Beaux Arts decorations and stucco were stripped off to reveal an older neoclassical façade. The building you see today is as Carlo Rossi intended it to look in the 1830s.

Dom 40  

Number 40, together with number 42 were contructed between 1791 and 1798 by architect Igor Sokolov as parish buildings for the Armenian Church they overlook. This has for many years been the place for German speakers to congregate, and for those wishing to sample German cuisine in the aptly named Nevsky 40 bar & restaurant. The building also houses the Municipal Committee for Culture. A century ago it had been a high class bakery owned by A. Abrikosov, purveyor to the Romanov's.

Photo taken with Olympus OM2 f1.4 during a snowfall on a bitterly cold January day 2000.

House number 40 during Summer 2006  

Number 40, during summer 2006

Saint Catherine's Armenian Church  

Number 40-42, St. Catherine's Armenian Church (Armyanskaya tserkov). In 1770 Empress Catherine II gave her permission for this church to be built on land previously owned by herself. The architect was M. Velton who also designed the building at number 42. The church was closed in 1930 and used as a workshop and warehouse for many years. In a very dilapidated condition it was returned to the Armenian parish in 1990, since when it has been lovingly restored. (The alternate image shows a winter view taken from the other side of Nevsky Prospekt).

Dom 42 Nevsky  

Number 42, built between 1771 & 1775 became the church’s possession in 1804. Poet Theodore (Fedor) Tiutchev, lived here from 1854 until 1874. Count Mikhail Speranski was a resident of this building from 1823 until 1835 and here he compiled the Full Collection of the Laws of the Russian Empire and the Law Code of the Russian Empire. His daughter, writer and novelist Elizabeth Frolova-Bagreeva held a literary salon here. Pushkin, Karamzin, Viazemsky, Zhukovsky and Mickiewicz were frequent guests at her salon. At the turn of the century and until eruption of the World War I a branch of the Russo-French bank occupied the ground floor of the building.

Dom 44  

Number 44, Inkas Bank - The Little Passage - Sever (famous for pastries and cakes)
This beautiful 1894 Art Nouveau building with a gray granite Neoclassical edifice was completed in its present form in 1910 for the Siberian Commercial Bank by the architects Marian S. Lyalevich and B. I. Girshovich. Although Sibirskii (Siberia) Bank was the main occupant and the owner at the time, 44 Nevsky also held offices of 'Rossia' , the nation’s largest insurer, two cafes and numerous shops. Either side of the attic window there are ornate male figurines carved out of the same granite as the facing slabs.
The building now boasts a modern shopping mall with the name 'Grand Palace'.

Dom 46 Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 46, the first recorded building at this address was constructed in 1745 and belonged to an Alexander Sablukov, the court coffee brewer (Kaffeeschenker). Architect Francesco Rastrelli lived here from 1750 through 1760s, whilst he was constructing the Winter Palace and the Smolny Monastery. In the late 18th century an Armenian merchant Khudobashev, purchased the lot. In 1823 architect Michael Lieven built a four story structure here. On May 6 1896 Cinematographe Lumiere was opened here in the confines of a remodeled retail store. The city’s first screening of a public commercial movie was here, which was the coronation of Tsar Nicholas II, shot by cameraman Camille Serf and issued by the Lumiere brothers of Lyon. This was within a year of the Lumiere's public launch of "cinematographe" in Paris".
The present appearance of the building dates from 1901 when it was reconstructed for use by the Moscow Merchant bank by architect Leonty Benois, and engineer Nikolai Smirnov in Art Nouveau style.

Dom 48, The Passazh.  

Number 48, site of the stylish Passazh arcade, which was the first department store in St. Petersburg to break away from State financing and originally opened in 1848. It was built by R. Zhelyazevich who modeled it after the Golitsin Gallery in Moscow. In 1899 – 1900 S. Kozlov raised the building up to four storeys and changed the front façade.

In May 2006, the City administration held an auction with a view to sell the building of the Passazh department store, having a total area of about 13,000 sq. m. This building, although encumbered with a long-term lease, was acquired by the Moscow-based company Divieto Limited for $ 50.5 million.


Dom 50, Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 50, Torgovy Dom, was originally a three story house for a merchant called Kokushkin, built in 1744 and redesigned in the late 1770s in classical style. From the late 1700s until 1870s this building also had a pharmacy (actually still there) and offices of a notary. In 1876 architect Alexander Shchedrin built another (fourth) floor and remodeled the building’s façade in eclectic style, for its new proprietress, Baroness Kusova. The new fourth floor acquired miniature eclectic porticos and the building itself got an array of new balconies decorated with cast iron fences. In 1903 Kusoff (Kousov) family sold the building to Sergei Ramensky.
In the 1960s the ground floor of the building had to be altered because of the construction of what to Canadians and Americans is either subterranean pedestrian passage or crossing or an underground walkway and what Britons call a subway.

Dom 52, Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 52, Dom Borozdin has existed in its current form since 1880 when it was re-styled by architects B. B. Geydenreyh and the brothers Schaub. It currently houses the Zulu Café, an art shop and the E. S. Demmeni State Puppet Theater. It has been the home to Russia's first Marionette Theater since the mid 1930's, but the house has other facets of cultural and historical significance: It was completed as early as 1832 and before the end of that century it housed the great piano collection of K. L. Schroeder. At the beginning of the 20th century, this building housed a Chamber Music concert hall and the renowned Dmitri Shostakovich later made his first public appearance here.

Dom 54, Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 54, where RusRegion Bank and Adidas have the prime position on the first floor, across the street from the Russian National Library. On the extreme left of the first floor is the USSR café, above an Opticians.
Karl Bulla, probably the most famous of all Russian photographers, had a studio here before the Bolshevik Revolution.
The building started life as a baroque mansion, owned by the architect Trezini, who sold it to Count Ivan Shuvalov around 1750. The Shuvalov family sold it on to the industrialist Demidov in 1825 and shortly after it was reconstructed in the classical style seen today

Dom 56, Yelisyev's Trade House  

Number 56 (Yeliseevsky gastronom), [Елисеевский магазин], is directly across the street from Catherine II's monument in Ploschad Ostrovskovo. This opulent Style Moderne trade house was constructed 1902-06 by Gavril Baranovsky for the Yeliseyev (Eliseieff) brothers who were the grandsons of the former serf who founded their dynasty in 1813. A high class delicatessen on the first floor still trades as Yeliseyevs (although perfume could soon to become the main fare), whilst the second floor houses the Comedy Theater named after N. P. Akimov. Baronovsky was unable to build again after the revolution and he died of starvation in Spb in 1920 aged 60. The complex consists of three buildings although the corner one is the structure that is referred to as Eliseevs’ store. The arch frames a giant stained glass window that opens several floors to the street.

Sculptures on Dom 56,  

Number 56 decor: The Art Nouveau stained glass contrasts with granite surface of the building which is decorated with allegorical sculptures of Commerce, Industry, Science and Arts.

Inside Yelisyev's Dom 56,  

Inside Number 56: The hall on the lower floor of the “shop window”, walk in and turn to the door to your left, to find one of the best preserved Art Nouveau interiors in the city. The store or this section is worth inspecting because of its impressive stained glass window and sculptured decor, not for the products it is selling. Their grocery items, fruit, cheeses, cold meats, sweets and beverages are outlandishly overpriced even by Western standards. The personnel are still Soviet in mentality - they are user-unfriendly and the atmosphere is decidedly stuffy. Pre Revolutionary Eliseev’s did business differently. By 1914 Eliseev Company had a turnover of around 400 million golden rubles (around 20 billion US dollars in today’s inflation adjusted valuation). In St. Petersburg the company had five food and wine emporia whilst in Moscow the Eliseev store was as famous as in St. Petersbourg. The company also had numerous wine-aging and bottling facilities in France and resold its produce throughout the continent.

Inside Yelisyev's Dom 56,  

Inside Number 56: The above was written about the Yeliseyevsky delicatessen in 2006. Sadly the business ceased trading in January 2007. This somber image shows the gloomy interior of this previosly vibrant emprium when it was viewed in November 2008 and the dust covered room appears to have been abandoned for quite some time. At the time of writing, there have been no announcements in the local press as to what the future holds for this historical site. In 2005 a Moscow based perfume chain was planning to rent this site for an initial payment of $10 milllion and thus make yet another change to the cultural map of the city. However city-government stepped in to veto this unwelcome maneuver and we now await news on the future of the site. Early 2011 workmen move into the former deli and commenced ripping out all the fittings. The store reopened after reconstuction on 8th March 2012

Dom 58  

Number 58 is presently a banking institute, this building was the St. Petersburg branch of the International Commercial Bank, fourth largest financial institution of pre-Soviet Russia. The structure has a solid but otherwise unremarkable classical façade. It was reconstructed as style Eclecticism with classical Neo-Grec elements in 1911 by architect Kashchenko. Before being a bank this lot was occupied by a hotel building, the Bellevue. Before that the building on this spot was owned by several local merchant families. The old building, dating from 1770s, which once was the Bellevue hotel, was demolished in 1896 and the present structure built on the same spot by architects Brzozowski and Kerbedz.

Dom 60, the Avrora movie theater under renovation  

Number 60: Denisovs had the first structure here in the early 1780s. In the 1790s Denisovs sold the property to Count Sergei Rumiantsev, statesman, diplomat and scientist, son of field marshal Peter Rumiantsev. In the 1830s the building passed to Duchess Barbara, the daughter of Sergei Rumiantsev and the field marshal’s granddaughter. In the early 1850s she sold it to Countess Anna Tolstoya. In 1858 the building was purchased by Ivan Glazunov and reconstructed by archt. G. I. Winterhalter, then passed to Glazunov's son Vasily (Basil). Presently in addition to the Avrora cinema the building houses an erotic nightclub called Golden Dolls and the Avrora Café.

Avrora theater/cinema  

The Avrora Theater at number 60: Whilst movies had been shown in St. Petersburg before the end of the nineteenth century, this was the site of the city's first purpose-built movie theater. Initially it was called the 'Piccadilly' and the first film publicly shown here in 1914 was about the 'Endlessness of a Woman's Soul'. The Soviet composer Dmitry Shostakovich worked here in the mid 1920's, providing accompaniment for the silent movies of the time. In honor of the cruiser Avrora, the theater was renamed Avrora in 1932 by the Soviets. The cinema entrance is in the courtyard which is directly behind the archway in the center of the building.

Dom 62  

Number 62, This heavily imposing structure was originally built in 1896 by the architect Boris Girszowicz for the St. Petersburg offices of a Southern Russian financial institution, the Commercial Bank of Azov, which went bust five years later. It then became the Severnaya (Nothern) Bank until the Revolution. The building is an odd mixture of eclecticism with unashamedly baroque elements and typically Art Nouveau asymmetry of its design. The pompous majestic facade of this building is faced with grey Radom Sandstone and is decorated with stone ornaments and reliefs. The asymmetrically placed pediment is crowned with a the Roman God Mercury - the patron of Trade. For 18 months it was the temporary home of Dom Knigi whilst building number 28 was being renovated. The ground floor was empty and unused by the end of 2008.

Dom 64  

Number 64, hosting the Farfor Khrustal Steklo glassware store and a L'Escale outlet. Originally a three story classical structure built for a local merchant. The building borders Karavannaia ulitsa or Caravan Street, the name originates from an Elephant Yard and Persian caravan serai nearby. In 1790s the building was acquired by the Menshikovs. This family owned the property until the unlawful Bolshevik nationalization and still probably legally own it. In 1881 Alexander Menshikov (the family is no relation of Petrine era Menshikov) commissioned architect Prussakov to reconstruct the 18 century design and the end result is still here to see in June 2006. The "Nevsky 64" Beauty Salon now based here on the 2nd floor, has the wherewithal to make people look like their pets and vice versa.

Dom 66, Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 66, Little is known about early 18th century owners of the lot, but from 1785 to 1788 it was in the possession of Gavryila Derzhavin, poet and statesman. In 1785 merchant Petr Sharov acquired the property and in 1799 rebuilt whatever stood on it into a three story structure in mature classical style. There was a pharmacy in this building at the corner of Nevsky and Fontanka that was mentioned in Nikolai Leskov’s Levsha. The pharmacy, one of St. Petersburg’s genius loci, operated on the same spot from 1799 until 2004, the year when this historic establishment was evicted in favor of a hideous place selling synthetic sushi.
In 1877 the building was enlarged: two more stories were built over the existing structure under the direction of architect Alexander Ivanov. Among the famous residents of this building were writers Alexander Kuprin and Andrei Bely.
Tchaikovsky was one of many composers who frequently visited here, when it was known as a music publisher's house.

Dom 68 - 74 Nevsky Prospekt.  

Numbers 68-74, Domenico's night club is in Dom 70 (Russian & Euro cuisine restaurant)

Central district Tax Office, SPB.  

Number 68, The relatively modern looking was the Central District Tax Office (op. Belosselsky-Belozersky Palace) between 1993 and 2009. The original "House of Letters" built here at the intersection of Nevsky with Fontanka Embankment, was destroyed by a Nazi air bomb in 1941 during the siege of World War II, but subsequently rebuilt in this form c.1948. Developer AvtoKomBalt and present owner of the building is planning to destroy the building in order to construct a hotel with an underground parking lot on the site. Hopefully recent history has taught local government about the consequences for adjacent buildings if this was to be done, but many fear that if a suitable donation is made to the St. Petersburg administration, this will become the sixth historic building on Nevsky to be pulled down since Governor Valentina Matviyenko took office in 2003!

Central district Tax Office, SPB.  

Number 68, Arguably the most attractive building from the Stalinist era in St Petersburg is no more! Seen here behind a false front in this image of mid-May 2011, all that is left of the elegant landmark is a pile of rubble. Despite a lengthy letter-writing campaign urging President Dmitry Medvedev to save the Literary House, money had a louder voice and the city really needed another hotel with a prime central location.  It would be inappropriate to suggest corruption at local government level, so we'll not mention it.

The Historic Centre of St. Petersburg is a UNESCO 'World Heritage' site and if UNESCO is not becoming concerned at City Hall's apparent irresponsible lack of protection for the buildings, they should be!

Dom 70 Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 70, This is a classical city mansion, a palace, built by architect D. I. Quadri for General Ivan Onufrievich Sukhozanet, a hero of Napoleonic wars, who fought at the fields of Borodino, the commander instrumental in the suppression of Decembrist uprising and the director of the War Academy. Between 1835 and 1839 S. L. Shustov and D. I. Visconti redecorated the interiors and created new painted ceilings in the style of mature classicism. In 1864 the Merchant Society acquired this property and reconstructed it for its needs. The work was directed by architect V. V. Strom. His changes were minor but significant enough to spoil the classical purity of Quadri’s façade. Later the building became the Headquarters of the Commercial and Industrial Union, which remained here until 1917. In the communist era an engineering institute and lab, was located in the building. The building also served as the Soviet Press House and later passed on to the Press House’s heir, the local Soviet journalist’s organization and became known as the Journalists House. As of 2005 there are a few other establishments in the building such as a travel agency and a restaurant paradoxically named Paradox.

Dom 72 Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 72, The Crystal Palace Movie House & Otkrytki Knigi Books. This is the site of Russia's first film theater which was opened October 5th 1929. It still shows recent American films, dubbed into Russian through a modern Dolby Stereo sound system. A certain Prince L. Gagarin was known to be resident here in 1909.
The building saw completion in its present form in 1910 and was designed by Sima I. Minash in the Northern Modern style as a tenement for M. B. Voyeykova. The facade is of 'talc-chlorite' or soap stone and is often used for carving because of its softness. Look for the carved eagle-owls, either side of the entrance.

Dom 74, Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 74, now a Hi-fi store, Toto clothing store, Krasny Terem Chinese restaurant and bistro. The land lot and buildings on it date from the 18th century and it is recorded as belonging to Cornet Officer V. G. Alexiev from c1840 to mid 1860's. Starting as a fine three story mansion, it had a restaurant opened here in the 1850's. In 1886 architect V. M. Nekora redesigned and expanded the property by adding two more floors. It then housed a bank, the offices of a satirical magazine and a lithographic print works. In Soviet times it was used for family apartments, to accommodate the Zastoly restaurant on the ground floor, and the Stolovaya restaurant in the basement from the late 1960's until after 1991.

Dom 76  

Number 76, this large eclectic structure at the corner of Nevsky Prospekt and 63 Liteiny Prospekt, is in most respects similar to its neighbor to the left, (74 Nevsky Prospekt), as the buildings share history, owners, and their esthetics are the same since both were reconstructed by the same architect, V. M. Necora, although the reconstruction took place a decade apart. 76 Nevsky was rebuilt in 1877 while 74 Nevsky got the last major facelift in 1886. Overall, 76 Nevsky may now be a bit newer structure superficially. The date of its construction and the initials of the first owner are made of wrought irons and are visible on the building balcony, N. M. (in Cyrillic H. M.) 1810. From 1877 the legendary Palkin’s Restaurant was located at this address. It later moved to Palkin’s Building (47/1). The restaurant was phenomenally popular and among its regulars were industrialist Franz San Galli and Charles Berd, writers M. E. Saltykov-Shchedrin and I. I. Panaev, poets Leo Mei and N. F. Shcherbina and many of the city’s inhabitants who could afford to dine out. Palkin's Restaurant has been resurrected here recently: another sad case of historic identity theft in this city. Quo Vadis Internet Cafe (2nd floor) has an entrance from Liteiny pr.

Dom 78.  

Number 78, or the pink building at the corner of Nevsky and 64 Liteiny Prospekt is large graceful looking eclectic structure, richly full of neo baroque elements. The intersection where Nevsky, Liteiny and Vladimirsky meet is a beautiful setting of 1870s bourgeois St. Petersburg. Appearances of all buildings at and around this intersection are from the late 1860s through early 1880s. All of them are eclectic structures, most richly adorned with elements of lively neo baroque, the style that was en vogue with Russian bourgeoisie from late 1840s until emergence of Art Nouveau and the early 20th century Neoclassicism that followed it. For its bourgeois appeal, its richness, and inoffensiveness to the common tastes, eclecticism continued to live on in Russian architecture until First World War and the Bolshevik coup d’etat. Buildings on this large lot date from 18th century. Merchant A. M. Tupikov reconstructed the property in 1870 with the help of two architects:- E. P. Vargin converted a four story classical building into an eclectic one and architect J. O. Dütel added another floor.

Dom 80  

Number 80: In the mid 19th century the building on this plot was purchased by A. V. Liphard , an industrialist, who basically demolished most of it and in 1872 hired architect Michael Makarov to redesign whatever was left. The result was a new building. This was the first major transformation of 80 Nevsky Prospekt. The next transformation came some 40 years later when the property was bought by Nikolai Dernov, who hired another architect, Marian Lalevich to redesign it in art nouveau style and build a cinema and entertainment center in the interior space. The Lalewicz-designed movie theater was christened Parisiana and opened its doors to the public in 1913. It was really an entertainment complex with restaurant and a bar underneath, and a cinema hall for 800 viewers. Cinema was silent of course in those early days. Parisiana was an art nouveau masterpiece and a marvel of early 20 century public entertainment design. In hot in late summer or autumn the roof of cinema hall opened mechanically and films were shown under night sky. Also the editorial offices of "Venski Chic" a fashion magazine that was published in Russian, French and German were located in 80 Nevsky Prospekt.

Dom 82 . Medi Dental Clinic.  

Number 82, This lot has three buildings, although only one is visible from Nevsky. Two of them were built in 1834 by engineer and architect Major E. A. Brün for himself. The buildings are classical of a Palladian kind, but only one visible from the inner courtyard has retained its classical purity. The Nevsky facing building was somewhat altered in 1852 when architect N. P. Grebënka rebuilt several interiors and added a lantern-like bay over the central archway entrance. In 1859 architect E. I. Winterhalter constructed another building in the interior of the lot. At the time of this photo in 2002, most of the Nevsky facing building is occupied by the Medi clinic, a medical establishment that has several branches, - dentistry, dental surgery, cosmetic surgery, liposuction, laser eyesight correction, etc. Despite their relative high prices (at least by Russian standards, although they are by far not the most expensive outfit of this kind in the city), Medi clinic is popular and there are long waiting queues for some procedures.

The ensemble of Nevsky 84  

Number 84, This U shaped Classical ensemble of buidings is unusual in that it is one of the few structures on upper Nevsky which are not facing the street (but there are several illogicaaly numbered dwelling houses on Old Nevsky, beyond Vosstaniya). These are accessed via a narrow passageway between the buildings of Nevsky 82 and Nevsky 86. These buildings were designed and constructed in 1862 by architect A. N. Kohlman for bourgeois businessman Second Lieutenant D. E. Benardaki, who enhanced his fortune by renting out luxury apartments to the city's intelligentsia. One notable tenant was composer M. A. Balakirev. Among those who met in his apartment and trod the narrow passage way regularly were the originator of the “nationalist movement” in Russian music, composer Cesar Cui. Other members of the group were Rimsky-Korsakov, Modest Musorgsky, Alexander Borodin. Tchaikovsky did not belong to the group, but was a frequent visitor to No. 84.

Formerly the palace of Princess Yusupova  

Number 86, The 'Actors House' & a former home of Princess Tatiana Vassillievna Yusupova. This imposing classical building was rebuilt from its original form in the 1830's by architects Gaspare Fossati and M. A. Ovsyannikov. This is the last true palace along Nevsky Prospekt, albeit it has not been used as a palace for about 150 years. The upper parts of the side wings are not interrupted with windows and are instead embellished with ornate bas-reliefs of military style crests. The overly priced Magrib cafe and club restaurant can now be found here: having a Moroccan theme with a choice of European or Oriental cuisine.

The Stereo Kino, Dom 88 Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 88, (c1860) The Stereo Kino (Cinema) and a Telephone Center are the main businesses here .

As with many other buildings in this part of Nevsky, there are several managed apartments herein and although the rooms are adequate, the entrance is through a dark and sinister courtyard. The communal foyer and stairway give the impression you are entering a goblin's grotto and the management should consider major improvements to decor and lighting here if they wish to attract business. However they do have a reasonable web site

Dom 90, Nevsky Prospekt.  

Number 90, Original built by an unknown architect in the early 1800s, the merchant family Meniaev which owned the site since 1850 asked A. K. Bruni to reconstruct the building and add a fourth floor. This work was done in 1866 – 1867
The first floor is all Rive Gauche perfumes and cosmetics, whilst the popular CafeMax Internet is located on the 2nd and 3rd floors. On the right side, is the entrance to the newly opened 'Nevsky 90' Mini-Hotel.

This image was taken during a dull November afternoon 2008 just after the building was repainted from a pale blue color.

Annex to Dom 90 , Nevsky Prospekt.  

The pink building set back in the courtyard between Nevsky 90 and 92 has the address of Nevsky 90. In 1898/1899 architect A. P. Schröter razed whatever stood in the middle here and erected a new five storey eclectic neo-baroque building. This middle neo-baroque building has a part in the history of rocket science and missile design. Between 1926 and 1930 Nikolaï Tichomiroff , inventor and rocket engine designer, lived here. He founded the Gazodynamiceskaya Laboratoriiya or the Laboratory of Gaseous Dynamics which was the Soviet Union’s first rocket technology research centre. Presently this central is occupied by LEK, a major regional construction company that specializes in building ultra-modern multistory apartment and office complexes, yet keeps its offices in a 19th century neo-baroque mansion!

Dom 92  

Number 92: As with number 90 on the left, this was reconstructed from an early 1800s dwelling house by A. K. Bruni. In 1903 it was redesigned again by A. P. A. P. Shiltsov and finshed off in 1904 by A. M. Kochetov. 'Knowledge' (Znanie), a publishing house was established here in 1898 by K.P. Pyatnitsky as a joint-stock company of writers, including Gorky. During the Revolution of 1905-07 Znanie published political (mostly Marxist) books, but faded out of existence by 1913.

The British owned Pulford Corporation, which manages the mini-hotels Nevsky 90 & Nevsky 91  now have modern VIP apartments in this building at reasonable prices, as they also have in the buildings at numbers 11 and 115 Nevsky Prospekt.

Number 94 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 94, originally built in the 18th century, it changed owners on several occasions before architect E. F. Krüger reconstructed it for his own use in 1860. The building had became a corner structure in 1850s when Nadezhdinskaya Street was extended to Nevsky and the building that had stood between the present day 94 and 96 Nevsky was demolished. Krüger expanded his income producing property by adding a floor and restyling the façades in cleaner classical (Neo-classical) lines. On the Nadezhdinskaya side of the street, there is a currency exchange shop or bureau d'change in the basement. On the second floor of the same side of the building is Calypso Travel which is a decent travel agency, reasonably friendly, catering mainly to local clients but it wouldn't turn a foreigner away. Calypso's prices are good and their agents actually take their time and search for the best airfare for you, something few travel agents do. They specialize in package tours to popular warmer climate destinations like Egypt, Cyprus and Goa. On the Nevsky side of the building since 2004, is the Planeta Sushi restaurant, which is part of Rossinter, a large Moscow based restaurant company.

KFC and Pizza Hut at Dom 96  

Number 96: This dwelling house was originally erected in 1790 for the Councilor of the State College of War a V. A. Pashkov. It was not built as a corner structure, instead to the left of it was a building owned by Egorov (Yegorov) merchant family. That building was demolished when city authorities connected Nadezhdinskaya Ulitsa (Hope Street) to Nevsky in the early 1850s. That’s when 96 Nevsky became a corner building. Until architect A. Ch. Poehl added another in 1839, it was a three storey building. The final changes to the building were made by Mikhail Makarov in 1870. Makarov also built an impressive long eclectic building in his trademark Renaissance inspired manner from the corner down along Nadezhdinskaja Ulitsa. Between 1911 and 1912 architect P. V. Rezvyï (Rezvy, Rezvyi) built new structures in the internal courtyard but they are not visible from Nevsky Prospekt.
Since May 1998 this building houses the dual 'Pepsico' franchise of KFC and the Pizza Hut. If you’re concerned about your health or animals’, KFC is not the place for you.

Dom 98 - Gelios Boutique  

Number 98, is one of the smallest buildings on this half of Nevsky. Like 100 Nevsky Prospekt this building also belonged to the Lopatin merchant family. In 1868 the Lopatins hired Michael Makarov, who had just finished number 100 Nevskiy, to remodel this building. Unusually for M. A. Makarov, better known for his neo-Renaissance and Russian style pastiches, this a somber classicist work. The sides of the upper floor are flanked by identical protruding porticos with figures of caryatides. In 1910 Russia’s first body-building organization, the Hercules Club opened here.

Currently (2002) home to an expensive boutique and another that's quite reasonable with it's prices.

Number 100 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 100, This house was built in neo-Renaissance style by Mikhail Makarov and completed in 1867 for N. Lopatin, but by the end of the century it was the residence of a famous St. Petersburg lawyer Anatoly F. Koni (1844-1927). Koni was a prominent defense attorney who was a master of jury trials (his record of getting criminals acquitted by juries was remarkable), a statesman, and a respected journalist.
School number 207 is currently located at this address.

Number 100 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 100, Pride of this prestigious address is the Kollizei (Coliseum) cinema. In 1907 architect Leonid Fufaevski constructed a huge hall within the courtyard of number 100 for the 'panorama circle' show Golgotha which charged admissions to see the artistic Passions of Christ. By 1909 Christ's passions stopped making enough profit for the owners of the edifice and they threw Jesus, the cross, and the works out. After getting rid of Golgotha stuff they built a skating rink in its stead. Enclosed roller skating rinks were then popular in large Russian cities. Besides roller skating rink the former crucifixion space also accommodated a cabaret and a wing with a small cinema modestly named Lux. By 1914 the skating rink was out and the new owners converted it to a 650 seat cinema called Gallant. In 1930 the cinema was renovated and re-opened as Colisei or the Coliseum.

Number 102 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 102: In the early 1800s this property belonged to merchant Vikulov who sold it to the Zmeyeff family in 1850. Fedor Zmeyeff had the old structure razed and a new classic eclectic building erected on the spot. This is the building that stands here today. It was built in 1877 by Ivan Bulanov. 1908 saw A. S. Khrenov remodeling it with the addition of fifth floor which was ornately capped in Neo-Baroque style. Its last legitimate owner was Jakov Zmeyeff who was a civil engineer and an otherwise fascinating personality who became a speaker of the St. Petersburg Municipal Assembly from 1898 until its demise at the time of the putsch. People who destroyed Zmeyev's parliament and his country were also his tenants. In this building apartments 16 and 38 were rented to the editorial and business offices of the Bolshevik magazine Vestnik Zhizni (Herald of Life). Also a certain Vladimir Lenin was a frequent visitor at 102 Nevsky during those times.

Number 104 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 104: Originally a city mansion of V. V. Frolova, a merchant woman, it was remodeled by architect A. Z. Komarov in 1828. Its next owner was someone called Neslind, another merchant. The third owner, E. S. Shcherbatova, wife of a major general, in 1877 commissioned architect I. I. Grigoriev to expand the building. E.S. Shcherbatova’s heirs sold the building to B. P. Wolfson, a court councilor and from him the building was passed on to A. I. Grudzdev, whose descendants are probably the legitimate owners of this structure. Like all properties it was illegally nationalized by Bolsheviks. This building is best known to the generations of Leningraders as Vostochnye Sladosti (Eastern Sweets or Sweets of the East). This is now a pastry and confectionary shop that bears names of both Sever and Metropol on its front sign. There is also the former State Interior Theater on the top floor of the building and The Society of Besieged Leningrad Residents whose membership is naturally dwindling.

Number 106 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 106: The original 18th century building here was reconstructed by architect A. I. Melnikov for Anasatasia. Duryshkina. Melnikov built an inner courtyard wing structure and enlarged the old building. A. E. Shliakov, a merchant, bought the building in the late 1860s. In 1873 he commissioned V. M. Nekora, then a young architect, to add two floors and to redesign the facades and the internal (wing) structures in an eclectic neo-baroque influenced style. In 1913 architect A. G. von Bock built large ground floor windows (vitrines) for retail occupants of the building and remodeled both ground and first floors, without apparently giving any regard to the rest of the building. Von Bock must have done what his clients wanted but otherwise it is a weird reconstruction, with the first two floors looking so oddly dissonant from the upper three. It’s like this structure is made of two unrelated buildings.

Looking along the street from building 108 towards the Anichkov Bridge  

On the sunny side of Nevsky Prospekt from the Anichkov Bridge up to number 108. The street being shown decorated at the time of the 2003 tri-centenary celebrations.

108 being the white building on the extreme right, which is the home of the Riviera cinema and 'Villina' knitted fashion wear .

Nevsky building 108  

Number 108: Seen here in July 2006 with a change of colour. This large residential rental property was originally owned by the merchant family Gusey who later sold it to P. O. Ivanov. He in turn hired architect Alexander Lange to add another floor. The line of addition is visible although Lange did not change the appearance of the building. In the course of the 19th century the building changed several owners and even more tenants. In 1906 Vladimir Lenin, the future Soviet dictator, was a frequent visitor to this building: one of the building’s apartments was rented by the Bolsheviks, and used for secret meetings. In 1913 architect V. S. Karpovich built a two story cinema building in the inner courtyard. The cinema is still in operation; it is called Riviera, and has two screens. The space on the second floor was remodeled in the Stalin era and bears marks of bland Stalinist classicism. Several alternative private theater companies operated in this building from 1918 until the Stalinist crackdown of 1929. The first was Theatre of Sentiments, The Grotesque, and then Fokine’s Theatre of Miniatures.

Number 110 Nevsky Prospekt  

Number 110, Members of the same extended family that owned 102 Nevsky had this building from late 1700s or early 1800s until the Soviet nationalization. Like many of its neighbors the building is in eclectic style, although its forms are more restrained than the likes of 116 Nevsky. Its current appearance dates from 1879, when it was reconstructed by I. I. Grigoriev. Karl Bulla the master photographer and photo-journalist was based here from 1885. In the early 1900s the building had editorial offices of Novy Krai (or New Country publishing house), and offices of Zerno (Corn to the English, or Grain to Americans), a magazine, a dental clinic and retail store of Denker & Co.

Dom 112  

Number 112: The same family which owned 96 Nevsky Prospekt, the Yakovlevs, a merchant clan, owned this beautiful building from its construction until Soviet nationalization. In all likelihood their descendants are the true legitimate owners of this building. Originally a three story neoclassical building it was reconstructed in flamboyant, rich forms of eclecticism by architect M. A. Makarov in 1866, who also added another floor. At the turn of century, editorial offices of “Rossia” newspaper were located here together with a few retail establishments as tenants. Presently there is a footwear retailer and an “Ideal Cup” coffee shop and a on the first floor. Similar establishments can be found at numbers 15 & 130 Nevsky. Disastrously this building suffered structual damage (as expected) during the demolition shenanigans on the next plot and is now favorite to be the next Nevsky building to be destroyed!

Dom 114 hiding behind a hoarding  

Number 114: almost hidden behind a massive advertisement which seemed to change weekly after 1990. The original late eighteenth century architect is unknown, but in 1828 it was reconstructed by P. S. Paltsev in the neoclassicism style. Three families, Semianov, Zverkov and Bogdanov, changed ownership of this building from early the 1800s until the Soviet nationalization of 1918.
At the turn of the century and early 1900s, the building contained offices of Segodnia (Today) newspaper; of Schelter & Giesecke elevators and lift equipment company, and the managerial offices of “Samolet” insurance company. The Ground floor was occupied by a jewelry shop and an optician.
Sadly this historic building is no more, having been demolished late in 2006 after the lot was purchased by Stockmann, the Finnish department store group.

Dom 114 reincarnated!  

Number 114: Many would disapprove of this replica building, seen here during May 2011 having been opened to the public six months previously, but there are probably many more who care not about historical heritage and welcome the chance to shop in this 'new' building. Progress in the changing world usually over-rules nostagia, in the same way it did when trams were removed from Nevsky Prospekt 60 years ago.

Dom 116 hidden behind a giant billboard  

Number 116 had been hidden for several years behind a giant billboard. This crestfallen building was concealed from view as it was in need of major restoration. Built in 1901 it was originally called Hotel Ermitage, and then Hotel du Nord before being renamed Severnaya in the 1930's. Around 2001 there had been rumours of it being converted into a modern hotel and also several plans proposed to turn this prime location into a commercial centre, but until 2006 nothing was agreed until the Stockmann Retail Group purchased the lot. The building was destroyed overnight in 2007 by the Stockmann vandal squad.  So much for State protection and these buildings having 'heritage status'!

The site of Dom 116 destruction  

Destruction site: This is the view of the above site late in the morning of November 19th 2008, with no remains of building 114 or 116. Stockman are investing at least 120 million Euros in constructing their new department store and the Nevsky Centre shopping complex. They had planned to have it all built and opened by the end of 2008, but Russia's new construction supervision authority accused Stockman of not submitting building plans or obtaining the necessary permits, so there have been several long delays to this mammoth project. However, after the greasing of various administrative cogs, the laying of the cornerstone ceremony did take place on 17 October 2008. When this new project is completed, it is likely to cause a significant shift in the retail market along Nevsky. Apart from the planned Stockman department store, the new complex (allegedly with 'exact' replica facades of buildings 114 &116), will have 70 smaller shops on its seven floors, plus a hotel and a car park for at least 550 cars.

The site of Dom 116 destruction  

Number 116 mark II was opened November 11, 2010 almost two years behind schedule and with the slight matter of being 65m Euros over the forecasted budget. Photographed here six months after opening it was not attracting much attention from the passers-by, but its prime location means that it will be a popular location for the New Russians to dispose of their money.

The rotunda of Ploschad Vosstaniya Metro Station, known as the Little Pie  

Number 118; Ploshchad Vosstaniya Metro Station, (the wedding cake) built on the spot where the Church of the Holy Sign was demolished in 1940.

The first of St. Petersburg's Metro trains ran from here in 1955 when it was linked to 7 other stations in the SW of the city. It is connected by subway to Mayakovskaya metro and the Moscow Railway Station and is one of only a few such stations which has two entrances. It has always been a busy station, but once the planned Stockmann shopping complex opens across the road, at the site of the old Severnaya hotel, it will need both those entrances and maybe more. For many years this busy corner has been plagued by street-walkers of both genders soliciting their services and the police are kept busy moving them on.

The Oktyabrskaya Hotel facing Ploscad Vosstaniya  

This is a elephantine building which takes up a whole block and one side of Ploshchad Vosstaniya (formerly Znamenskaya). Built in the late 1840's by the architect A. P. Gemilian on the site of a former elephant yard for Count Frederick Stenbock-Fermor (the owner of the Passage), it has served as the hotel for the Moscow Rail station for most of its life under various names. Currently known as the Oktyabrskaya Hotel it is affectionately called Dom Frederick after the original owner. (The front entrance to the 1600 room hotel is actually halfway down a wing in the street to the left of this view). Before the Revolution it was known as Grand Hotel du Nord and during the war it was used as a hospital for the starving and also housed the Estonian Government in exile. In the 1970's the main facade was reconstructed in Neo-Renaissance style to complement the Moscow (former Nikolaievsky) Rail Station.


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Last updated January 17th 2014



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