Walk around Tsaritsyno

In 1776, at the direction of Empress Catherine II, the Tsaritsino Palace Complex was laid. It should become her country residence. Vasily Bazhenov became the architect. We will walk in the park, consider the architecture and fountains.

Dear friends! Historical data are taken from open sources, for the reliability of which I cannot be responsible, since I am not a historian, anthropologist or ethnographer. I am a photographer and a traveler and the purpose of this blog is to tell about interesting places first of all, and you should not miss them when planning trips. If you are interested in the details, then please explore the story deeper on your own. Thank you for understanding!

Let’s start with the fact that once this place was in the possession of Tsarina Irina, who is the sister of Boris Godunov. And there is information that there were many buildings that were destroyed and only a system of ponds remained from that time. Later this place changed hands. Which hands it was absolutely known, there is a lot of information and if you are interested, then look. All these were influential people who had a big name and influence in the history of our country. It is also known that the place had the name “Black Mud” and that even before the purchase of this site by Catherine II, one of the owners had already made attempts to set up a park, gardens and build a palace here, albeit a wooden one.

The year was 1775. The Russian-Turkish war had just ended. The Empress comes to Moscow, walks around the neighborhood, is fascinated by the place and immediately buys it from the then owner, Prince Sergei Cantemir. And she pays more than the prince announced. And now the estate in Kolomenskoye, in which the Empress stayed earlier, is losing its charm in the eyes of Catherine in favor of a new place, to which she gives the name «Tsaritsyno».

Vasily Bazhenov, the court architect, was given the task of developing a project for a suburban Moscow residence. The architect has created something amazing. He combined Gothic elements (on the instructions of the Empress), classicism and other styles, and this common theme of the Tsaritsino project continued to live on in numerous architectural masterpieces of that time. I will not describe in detail the entire architectural project of Bazhenov, there is a lot of information from the network. I’ll just tell you that after a certain time, Bazhenov loses favor in the eyes of Catherine, he is removed and all powers are transferred to his student Matvey Kazakov.

The palace, already built earlier according to the Bazhenov project, is dismantled almost to the ground and in its place they rebuild and remake another in a new form, more festive and more pompous. From the former, the general direction of Bazhenov’s style remained, the material (red brick and white stone). Kazakov adds turrets with spiers, pilasters, columns and a larger scope.

Then there are many vital and not very questions in the life of the empress, funding is cut, and after her death in 1796, Emperor Paul completely stops construction.

Further, already in the 19th-20th century, there was a restaurant, a hotel, dachas, the Bolshevik club, and even communal apartments. Not in all buildings, but still. In the 80s of the 20th century, almost everything that you see was destroyed and turned into ruins, and after 1986 a large-scale reconstruction was carried out, which ended in 2014, during which these buildings and their historical appearance were restored.

Here is such a story. And now let’s take a walk around the territory and look at individual sections of the park and the palace ensemble.

The palace itself has already been shown above, now I will show individual buildings on the territory of the complex.

Cavalry Corps

It seems like it was intended for palace servants. If I’m wrong, please correct me in the comments.

Palace layout

Opposite the main palace there is a model of how the building looked according to the Bazhenov project and how it began to look after the changes made by Kazakov. Our son has a special love for layouts, so he looked at them for a long time.

Church of the Icon of the Mother of God

Built in 1722 on the site of an old wooden church. After several times rebuilt and modified. During the Soviet era, there was a transformer substation here. The last restoration was completed in 1998.

Bread house or kitchen building

The name speaks for itself. The building laid down by Bazhenov contained many kitchens and various workshops.

figured bridge

Greenhouse Bridge

Greenhouse building

Greenhouses were built by Bazhenov. Over time, the number of buildings grew and by 1820 there were already eight buildings. Watermelons and apricots, peaches and oranges, grapes, pineapples, olives, many different southern crops, rare and tropical plants, flowers and shrubs were grown there. At the end of the 19th century, the greenhouses were closed. Dachas were formed in their place. They were restored only in 2006.

Tsarina Ponds

You see a bridge and a fountain located in the middle Tsaritsinsky pond. There are several ponds in the area. The oldest Borisovsky appeared on this territory when Boris Godunov ruled. The largest is the Lower Tsaritsinsky pond, and the most beautiful is the Upper one.

There are still a lot of buildings on the territory of Tsaritsyno. This walk of ours was very cursory and without visiting museums and buildings. Naturally, we will come back here and visit the palace, look at the interior decoration, exhibits and capture more architectural masterpieces. I hope you enjoyed this walk and the palace itself.

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