The Building of the Hotel “Berezina and European” in Bobruysk
Architecture, Industrial buildings
Most of foreign tourists that have chosen rest in Belarus prefer to visit cultural and historical centers and picturesque natural places that are of a huge number in our country. However, sometimes travelers quite unexpectedly come across old buildings among modern urban architecture. They once were very popular, and today they are associated with many mysterious stories and fables.
Of course, we are talking about the building of the hotel “Berezina and European” in Bobruysk that was constructed in the late XIX century by using the funds of the landowner Karl Nezabytovsky. By the way, Nezabytovsky began his career as a magistrate and began to occupy higher posts of Minister and Senator of Poland after 30 years. And that three-storey building became the town's first building that was constructed at a time when the Bobruysk fortress stopped being a strategic military facility.
Today, the locals call this hotel “Paris”, and it is not a coincidence. In its golden years, the hotel hosted a luxurious restaurant “Europe” on its ground floor. There was a rich dining room with a summer garden, luxurious lodges, a private wine cellar, small cabins for those who wish to cloister themselves, and also pool tables, delicious food, a large orchestra and a unique atmosphere. Therewith, prices in the restaurant were quite affordable. All of this made Europe the most popular place for residents and visiting guests.
In the early XX century, the building of the hotel hosted one of the first travel agencies that offered everyone willing the then unique and unusual tours in Africa, America and Canada.
As to the architecture of the building, it was also very original. The facade of the buildings was of symmetrical form, and there were rusticated pilasters and simple attics between the floors. Windows of the ground floor were much wider than the others; they were also decorated with bow-shaped lintels with frames in the form of architraves and decorative castle stones. The entire architectural composition was decorated with a profiled cornice located on the facade of the building. However, the hotel was the main entertainment place in the town for a relatively short time – before the October revolution.
In the early 1920s, the building hosted the headquarters of the Chongar division of the cavalry army of Budyonny. This 11th cavalry army committed a large-scale act of assault on the Chongar Isthmus during the Civil war in Russia. This event has certainly become known as the most massive battle. In the second half of the XX century, the former hotel was transformed into communal apartments. People lived there about 30 years, but in 1980s due to the emergency condition of the whole building, it was decided to relocate all occupants in other apartments. The project about the reconstruction of the house was developed a little later but, thank God, that project was not to be because, in that case, the architectural monument would cease to exist, and would be like a typical residential building in the residential area. Later, it was agreed to restore the building and transform it into a hotel, but those plans remained on paper.
Today the once elegant building of the hotel “Berezina and European” is empty, and is gradually falling into decay. However, it attracts not only tourists but also filmmakers with its unique surroundings and atmosphere. Here you can often find a film crew shooting historical pictures and TV shows.