< SLOVAKIA | BRATISLAVA: Radisson Blu Carlton Hotel
The history of one of the most famous Slovak hotels, the Carlton, reaches back to the 13th century when on the site of today’s hotel stood a much smaller hotel with the name The Swan. In 1760 alongside the hotel The Swan stood also an old inn The Three Green Trees, with 22 rooms and stabling for 120 horses. The inn was one of the best accommodation facilities. In the first half of the 19th century the owner of the inn, Ján Löw, issued a tender for the reconstruction of the inn into a large First Class hotel. The tender was won by the project of Ignác Feigler Jnr., according to which reconstruction dated 1846 was carried out.
The innkeeper Ján Löw rented hotel to a rich winegrower, Jakub Palugyay who renamed it into The Green Tree. It was under his management that the hotel gained recognition throughout
Europe. Not only the rich came to Jakub’s hotel, but also the poor. In the hotel restaurant lunches were often served for high society tourists and members of various guilds.
Less than a year after the first cinematographic presentation in Paris the hall in The Green Tree Hotel was filled in December 1896. An audience of expectant viewers became participants in the first film presentation.
The Palugyays had to face strong competition from the Speneder family, which owned in the neighbourhood the hotel The National (later known as The Savoy). During time, Henry Prüger bought The National, as well as later, The Green Tree. Without delay he set about reconstruction and joined all three buildings.
In 1912, new hotel complex was created and named The Carlton-Savoy. Its proud owner opened the renovated building with pomp and celebration. In the years 1925-1929 the hotel underwent the most extensive reconstruction after which it got its actual appearance. On the basis of the projects of one of the greatest Slovak architects, Milan Michal Harminc, through a four-floor extension he unified the hitherto three-storey building, uniting the facade under a single roof. For several decades the hotel was among the finest in Europe. Hotel's guest book include names of Thomas Alva Edison, Alfred Nobel, Theodore Roosevelt, Tomáš G. Masaryk...
In 1945, when Germans left the hotel, Russian commanders moved in. Carlton was renamed into Moscow and hotel gradually fell into disrepair. In 1977 it was even threatened with being knocked down. Had there not been a group of experts from the then Project Institute of Trade and Tourism, who in cooperation with expert structural engineers from SVŠT Jozef Harvancík and Vojtech Kozakovic produced an expert opinion arguing for conservation, this Bratislava architectural and cultural monument would not today have existed.
In 1989 it was although for a while again in operation, but for safety reasons functioned then only in somewhat muted fashion. In 1992 it was closed. After six years’ dilapidation, slowly forgotten, this once so famous hotel met its resurrection. In 1998 was laid the foundation stone of the reconstruction of the greatest Bratislava hotel, The Carlton and in October 2001 came the long-awaited opening.
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