If you ever visit Warsaw, have a look inside the Palace of Culture. There are 3000 rooms, a swimming pool, a cinema, museums, theatre and a bar or two.
One of the coolest places is Cafe Kulturana which is on the east entrance side of the building. Wannabe intellectual-types sit around discussing art,drinking Paulaner beer or sipping mojitos. Or expats go there and try and blend in. It's a good place to start off an evening because it is right in the centre of town (in Warsaw bars are dotted around all over the place).
So, while you down your first pint in these historic surroundings, you can talk about where to go for the pub crawl.
Here are some photos taken inside the Palace. Many fixtures and fitting are original.
As you are probably aware by now, Warsaw has not one dominant architectural style. This is due to to the wars, destruction and therefore rebuilding that has had to happen (especially after WWII where 80% of the city was destroyed) and where different town planners and architects meet.
In summary, Prague or Barcelona it ain't but seek and you shall find interesting things. Open your eyes, go off the beaten track and you'll be amazed at what you can find.
Here is a selection of photos showing the different kinds of styles on offer (old and new).
In the summer I went to the Warsaw horserace track for the first time. I'd heard a lot about it and what a fantastic day out it turned out to be. It's a place where history, passion and excitement all seamlessly meet together.
As you approach the racecourse there are the abandoned buildings from its heyday. Then you reach the main pavillion and it lives up to its reputation as being one of Warsaw's outstanding examples of original 1930s modernism (similar to the De La War Pavillion in Bexhill if you can imagine). Sweeping white lines and wraparound glass windows all set in acres of greenery.
The course is well looked after - you can see. The turf is in good condition and one of the great things is that you can stand outside with a drink right where the horses come out at the start of the race.
There was a real mix of people there too - famillies, groups of lads and couples. Just for a day anyone can go and forget their worries and stick a few zlots on the gee-gees.
Tip:Brush up on your betting lingo before you go and which horses are running in the races on that day.
Known locally as SGH, Warsaw School of Economics is a very highly regarded school of business and economics. The school has a long and interesting history with building on the site closest to Metro Pole Mokotowskie dating back to the 1920's. The picture below shows the building built between 1951-1955 (project from 1924).
The whole campus houses more building in the same Art Deco architectural style.
The buildings are a must see for any Art Decohead.
The CTD (Smyk) Department Store was built in 1948-1952 and designed by Zbigniew Ihnatowicz and George Romanski on Aleje Jerozolimskie. It was built in the Modernist style of the pre-1920s and was an outstanding example of this kind, certainly in Warsaw, in its day. Today, unfortunately, you would hardly notice it, unless you were an architecture buff that is. It is draped in the over-the-top Smyk advertisement (see picture below) and is also in need of a renovation.
According to wikipedia, the building is going to be renovated and redeveloped. Here's hoping the future looks bright...
Read the full article here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CDT_%27Smyk%27_Department_Store
Here's a photo of the building at night:
Just stumbled across this story. The world's narrowest house is to be built in Warsaw. Madness or genius. What do you think?
Read the full story here: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-2011438/Polish-architect-building-worlds-narrowest-house-Warsaw-tower-blocks.html
I say why not. If house prices remain as they are then it's the little bits that count. It is not uncommon to find a 5 million zloty (1 million pound) house in Warsaw now. They say house prices are declining i.e it is a good time to buy but even so, some people are paying silly money for property here.
A new building is taking shape on Zlota Street behind Zloty Tarasy. It is the giant skyscraper called Zloty 44. Designed by the famous architect Daniel Libeskind and the first of his buildings in Poland, it will be 192m high. With the usual delays that dog any big project in this country (it stood abandoned for a long time) it is now towering above the centre. Can't wait to see the finished structure.
Jon Green - A British expat in Warsaw (Warszawa)
Blogging, photos and videos about Warsaw. Showcasing the new and the old, the modern versus the abandoned and forgotten and a view of the city you might not otherwise see.
Interested in Polish and English history of World War II? Check my photos of the Wolf's Lair & Hitler's Bunker here
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