Zacheta Warsaw near Marshal Street
The monumental Zacheta building near Marshal Street was constructed between 1899 and 1903, on behalf of the Society for the Promotion of Fine Art (Towarzystwo Zachety Sztuk Pieknych), though usually it is simply abbreviated to Zacheta. The Neo-Renaissance design was by Stefan Szyller, the leading architect of Warsaw's Revival period.
His design included an imposing central staircase, a glass-roofed inner courtyard and plans for four wings. However, these wings were only fully completed as recently as 1995. The aim of Zacheta was to promote contemporary Polish art. This included organizing exhibitions, competitions and annual salons.
The society also purchased works of art for its own collection. In 1922, Zacheta was the scene of a major political assassination. At an exhibition of the newly independent Republic of Poland, Gabriel Narutowicz, was shot dead. His assassin was a Polish painter and art critic, named Eligiusz Niewiadomski. More recently the Zacheta collection moved to the National Museum (Muzuem Narodowe). The building now serves as a venue for temporary exhibitions of modern and contemporary Polish art.
|Address||Plac Malachowskiego 3, Warsaw|
|Phone||827 58 54|
Augsburg Protestant Community Church Warsaw
Regarded as one of the most outstanding examples of Neo-Classical architecture in Poland, the Augsburg Protestant Community Church (Kosciol Ewangelicko Augsburski) was especially built for the Lutheran community of Warsaw, between 1777 and 1791.
It also bears witness to the countries religious tolerance during the reign of Stanislaw August Poniatowski, Poland's last king. Designed by the architect Szymon Bogumil Zug, the church is reminiscent of the Pantheon in Rome, which the Romans built as "a temple of all Gods". However, this source of inspiration was merely a starting point, from which Zug developed a unique architectural design.
|Address||Kredytowa 4, Warsaw|
|Phone||827 68 17|
The original style of the Warsaw Philharmonic (Filharmonia) building was one of the city's most eclectic. Embellished with allegorical figures and statues of great composers, the firm of Kozlowski and Pianka was responsible for the design, and finance came from private parties by subscription. Building took place in record time.
Construction began in 1900, with the inaugural concert held on 5 November 1901, led by Ignacy Paderewski. Rebuilt in the Socialist Realist style after World War II, the Philharmonic bears only a vague resemblance to its original form. The Chopin Piano Competition has been held here since 1927.
|Address||Jasna 5, Warsaw|
|Phone||826 57 12|
|Bus||E-4, 107, 119|
Palace of Culture and Science near Marshal Street
The monolithic Palace of Culture and Science (Pałac Kultury i Nauki) was a "gift" from Soviet Russia to the people of Warsaw, and intended as a monument to "the inventive spirit and social progress". Built between 1952 and 1955 to the design of the Russian architect Lev Rudniev, it resembles Moscow's Socialist Realist tower blocks.
Although the palace has only 30 stories, it was Europe's second tallest building when completed. Measuring just over 230 meters (750 ft) including the spire. It has a volume of more than 800,000 cubic meters (28 million cubic ft) and it has 40 million bricks. The interiors featured many architectural and decorative elements, removed from stately homes after World War II.
Although the palace is nearly half a century old, it still inspires extreme emotions among Varsovians, ranging from admiration to demands for its demolition. With the end of the Soviet domination, the building's role has changed. It now provides office space. However, the palace has remained a cultural center with its two theaters, cinema, puppet theater and excellent bookshop.
|Address||Plac Defilad 1, Warsaw|
|Phone||656 62 01|
Bracia Jablkowscy Department Store
The former Bracia Jablkowscy Department Store (Dom towarowy Bracia Jabłkowscy) was originally the largest department store of Warsaw. This early modernist building is one of the best examples of early 20th century Polish architecture. Designed by Franciszek Lilpop and Karol Jankowski, building took place between 1913 and 1914 around a reinforced concrete framework.
Nationalized after World War II, it initially traded as the Central Department Store (Centralny Dom Towarowy) before becoming the city's principal shoe shop (Dom Obuwia). The building fell into disrepair, but after restoration it now houses chic boutiques. The ornate lobby features a Post-Secessionist stained-glass window (the largest in Warsaw), and humorous reliefs by Edmund Bartlomiejczyk.
|Address||Bracka 25, Warsaw|
|Phone||692 14 00|
|Bus||102, 107, 117, 128, 158, 171, 175|
|Tram||7, 8, 9, 22, 24, 25|
Water Filtering Plant Warsaw
The water-filtering plant (stacja filtrów), which occupies a large site in central Warsaw, is one of he city's most important example of 19th century industrial architecture. In the 1880's Warsaw was the first city in the former Russian empire to acquire a modern water and sewage system, thanks to the initiative of the city's president, General Sokrates Starynkiewicz.
However, the project had many opponents, particularly among landlords, who did not want to bear the cost of a sewage plant. One argument they cited was that the new system would damage agriculture in the surrounding region, by depriving farmers of the city's natural fertilizer.
The principal designers of the system were from England. William Lindley and his son William H Lindley, who had designed water-supply systems for other European cities. River and canal pumping stations were also built at various points by the filtering plant. The filtering plant's most interesting features are within its underground structure.
There, water filters consisting of inter-connected, vaulted brick chambers are on display. Large granite pillars are supporting them. The former engine room now includes a small museum. It demonstrates the process of the filtering plant and illustrates the history of the building of this water and sewage system.
|Address||Koszykowa 81, Warsaw|
|Phone||628 80 61|
Lwowska Street Warsaw
An atmosphere of turn-of-the century Warsaw can best be enjoyed in Lwowska Street (Ulica Lwowska). This is the only street from that period in the city center to escape World War II destruction. A picturesque example of early Modernism, inspired by Scandinavian architecture, is at No. 15/17.
Artur Górney designed the building in 1910. The courtyard of No. 13 even features a small palace, built in 1912. The vast Secessionist/Modernist building on the corner of Lwowska and Koszykowa streets was originally the Russian College. It now houses the Architecture Department of Warsaw Technical University.