< RUSSIA | ST. PETERSBURG: Belmond Grand Hotel Europe
The Grand Hotel Europe, the first five-star hotel in the country, is a historical building, dating from 1824, and has a preserved neo-classical facade
designed by the Italian architect, Rossi and original art nouveau interiors.
In 1824 a four-storey house was built on the site adjacent to Nevsky Prospect. Next year, two more houses were added on Mikhailovskaya Ulitsa.
In the 1830s Italian architect Carlo Rossi, united the three properties with a single elegant facade. Rossi favoured the classic school of architecture and was responsible
for many of St. Petersburg’s famous landmarks, including the nearby Mikhailovsky Palace (now the Russian Museum) and the square between the palace and the future Grand Hotel
Europe - Arts Square.
In 1830 the first hotel to occupy this site opened. The “Kuolon” was located in the building facing the square while the rest of the property was used by trading companies.
In 1872 the “Evropeyskaya Hotel” joint stock company was formed with the objective of creating a luxury hotel from the entire building. Reopened after restoration in January 1875, the hotel was named the Grand Hotel d'Europe and was among the world’s foremost hotels.
Between 1905 and 1914 the Swedish-Russian architect Fyodor Ivanovich Lidvall was largely responsible for the turn-of-the-century Jugend style interiors found in the present day Restaurant Europe, Lobby Bar, Caviar Bar and Billiard Room.
In 1917, at the height of the First World War and the Bolshevik Revolution, the hotel was used as an orphanage. With the ending of the war and the beginning of the Soviet period, the building returned to its traditional role as a hotel and became known as the “Evropeyskaya”.
To suit changing market needs a number of the larger suites were converted into smaller standard rooms between 1932 and 1934. During the 900-day siege of Leningrad from 1941 - 1944, the hotel became a much needed hospital with 1.300 beds. After the siege the building returned to being a hotel - however after its last facade renovation in the 1950s, the hotel eventually became badly dilapidated and was in desperate need of restoration.
In 1989, the hotel was closed for complete reconstruction. The ambitious project, carried out by a joint venture comprising Intourist and two Swedish companies, was monitored and supported by the State Inspectorate for Protection of Cultural Heritage (GEOP).
At the end of 1991, the Grand Hotel Europe reopened in new splendour, attracting travellers from all over the world being a highlight of St. Petersburg’s history.
Between 1995 and 2005, the hotel was managed by the Kempinski Hotels & Resorts international chain which includes true de-luxe hotels around the world.
Since February 2005 the hotel is managed by Orient Express. Orient-Express Hotels Ltd was renamed Belmond in 2014.
Grand Hotel Europe's guest list include name such as: HH Prince Nicholas Romanoff, HRH Prince Frederik Andrey Henrik Christian of Denmark, HM King of Sweden, HRH Prince of Japan, HRH Prince of Siam, HRH Prince Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia, HRH Prince Charles Philip Arthur George of Wales, HM King and HM Queen of Norway, HM Queen Beatrix, Jacque Chirac President of France, Horst Kohler President of Germany, Anna Pavlova, Igor Stravinski, Maxim Gorky, Isadora Duncan, Johann Strauss, Luciano Pavarotti, Montserrat Caballe, Zubin Metha, Mireille Mathieu, Sir Elton John, Helen Mirren, Sharon Stone, Peter Ustinov, Jim Carrey, Catherine Deneuve, Gerard Depardieu, Neil Armstrong, Hubert Givenchy, Cindy Crawford, Andre Agassi, Steffi Graf, Mika Hakkinen...
#Andreas Augustin, Igor A Bogdanov, Andrew Williamson: Grand Hotel Europe St. Petersburg
The Most Famous Hotels In the World, 1996 | ISBN-10: 9810012896; ISBN-13: 978-9810012892
English language: ISBN: 9783900692261) | 160 pages | Hardcover
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