We invite you to linger on the pedestrian street Eugen Doga. Here the rhythm slows, the noise of the cars [..]
Pedestrian street Eugen DogaWe invite you to linger on the pedestrian street Eugen Doga. Here the rhythm slows, the noise of the cars is away and you are invited to take a photo next to the urban sculpture of two young people or to enjoy a drink on one of the many terraces. The pedestrian street opened in 2015 and bears the name of the master and composer Eugen Doga, named as "Artist of the People and Man of the Millennium". Eugen Doga was born on 1 March, 1937. The great composer is a member of the 200 personalities of the world. Additionally, he is the author of hundreds of classical compositions, music and movies. UNESCO recognized the waltz "Beauty and my tender beast" in the film of the same name, as one of the 4 musical masterpieces of the 20th century.
While we were talking about cultural edifices, one of the most famous modernist buildings in the Chisinau is the National [..]
CircusWhile we were talking about cultural edifices, one of the most famous modernist buildings in the Chisinau is the National Circus. Construction began in 1980, and the first performances was already scheduled in 1981. The authors of the project didn’t want a typical project for the circus – a widespread practice in soviet period. And came up with an original proposal – circular construction with oblique columns reminiscent of the Moldavian hora, and the sculptures of two cheerful clowns welcomed guests to entry. There were more than 60 performances a year in front of 1,900 viewers. The team consisted of acrobats, jugglers and exotic animals. The life of the Circus was stopped in 2004 for economic reasons and since then, the great hall is deserted. The circus partially reopened in 2014 at the small arena. A new project funded by the European Union gives us hope that the Chisinau Circus will be renovated and will host a wide range of cultural events.
We have reached the street that honours the great Russian poet Aleksandr Pushkin. This is one of the few streets [..]
Alexander Pushkin streetWe have reached the street that honours the great Russian poet Aleksandr Pushkin. This is one of the few streets in Chisinau that has not changed its name in the last 100 years. Because of his revolutionary poems, Pushkin is sent to mass in Chisinau. During the period of Soviet movement, his movement was interpreted as exile. In reality, while he was in Chisinau from 1820 until 1832, the poet had a comfortable stay. He managed to connect beautiful friendships, as well as a string of love affairs. In Chisinau, Pushkin also wrote some of his most beautiful poems: The Dagger, Prisoner of the Caucasus, Outlaw Brothers, Fountain of Bakhchysarai and began the masterpiece Yevgeny Oneghin.
We arrived near Alexei Shchusev Street. This street bears the name of the architect, who designed modern Chisinau. On the [..]
Alexei Shchusev Street and MuzeumWe arrived near Alexei Shchusev Street. This street bears the name of the architect, who designed modern Chisinau. On the same street there is also a museum that bears his name, organized into the house where the architect was born in 1873. Since childhood, he stood out in art and the decision to become an architect was not surprising. He had remarkable successes, studied architecture and painting in Italy, France, Tunisia, England. Upon his return, Alexey Shchusev begins his professional career. Today he is known as the author of important buildings on the territory of the former Soviet Union: Lenin's Mausoleum, Kazansky Railway Station, Moscow Cathedral of the Holy Trinity in Pocheev. He also led the reconstruction of Chisinau after World War II. We recommend that you visit the architect's museum to learn about his life and work better.
The National Museum of History of Moldova is a white stone construction with pyramidal towers in corners and a large [..]
National Museum of History of MoldovaThe National Museum of History of Moldova is a white stone construction with pyramidal towers in corners and a large scar around which you can see various exhibits. The museum has been located since its inception in the historic building of Gymnasium No. 1 boys, later Bogdan Petriceicu Hasdeu Boys High School. Since 1987 the History Museum has been located here. Today, it houses 12 exhibition halls and more than three hundred thousand exhibits. Here is presented in detail the history of Moldova from the prehistoric era to the 20th century. In the museum's garden you will find the statue of Lupoaicei – Lupa Capitolina, a copy of the original monument located in the Italian capital, which was donated to Chisinau in 1926. Unfortunately, the monument disappeared without a trace in 1940, but in the late 1980s it was decided to recreate and return it to the museum.
It's impossible not to notice it. The National Art Museum of Moldova captivates you at first sight. Let's go through [..]
National Museum of Fine ArtsIt's impossible not to notice it. The National Art Museum of Moldova captivates you at first sight. Let's go through the chronological axis of the building. In 1897 a real estate property consisting of old buildings on the corner of the district was sold, demolished and in their place was built in 1901 the girls' gymnasium building in the name of Natalia Dadiani, its author being Alexander Bernardazzi. In eclectic style, with a slight Florentine Gothic influence, the building served as the seat of the gymnasium until the Second World War, when the upper part was damaged. In the post-war period, the building managed to serve as a workplace for various Soviet institutions, such as the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the MSSR, the Palace of Pioneers, and the Museum of the History of the Communist Party of Moldova. In order to expand the museum space, a two-storey wing was built to the right of the building, symmetrical to the one on the left, both in terms of location and architectural solution. Since 1988 the main building of the Casa Herța Museum has been closed for restoration and the exhibits have been transferred to the present museum building. The museum holds a valuable collection of religious art, painting, graphics, sculpture, and national and universal decorative art. It has 15 collections, a total of 39,000 exhibition units. I invite you to discover the exceptional works of national artists: Valentina Rusu-Ciobanu, Igor Vieru, Mihai Grecu, Alexandru and Olga Plamadeala, Claudia Cobizev, Lazar Dubinovschi and many others...
Founded in October 1889, the National Museum of Ethnography and Natural History is the country’s oldest museum. It was initially [..]
National Museum of Ethnography and Natural HistoryFounded in October 1889, the National Museum of Ethnography and Natural History is the country’s oldest museum. It was initially established as a museum of agriculture but then expanded to embrace the study of Bessarabian culture. Today, the museum represents an important scientific and cultural institution with much international acclaim. The museum moved to its current location after its completion in 1905. The architect Vladimir Tsiganko adorned the building with a signature frontal façade which consists of a triangular pediment supported by two Doric columns. The rest of the building, with its partially-stone partially-plastered walls, has a semi-basement appearance. The interior is split into two main sections — one, exhibiting Moldova’s flora and fauna and its transformation over the years. The other, featuring Moldovan people and their traditions, allows visitors to trace Moldovan ethnicity’s evolution. The collection includes paleontological, ethnographic, and archaeological finds. There is a small fee charged at the entrance. The museum is open daily, except Mondays, from 10 am to 6 pm. After visiting the museum, one may also want to take a stroll in the oldest in Moldova botanical garden located nearby.
Built in 1974, this Hall was named the “Octombrie Concert Hall” until the end of the Soviet era and then [..]
National PalaceBuilt in 1974, this Hall was named the “Octombrie Concert Hall” until the end of the Soviet era and then renamed in honour of famous Moldavan folk singer Nicolae Sulac. The “Octombrie” Concert Hall was initially built as a little miniature copy of the Grand Kremlin Palace of Congresses in the capital of Russia - Moscow. The architecture and the appearance, in general, were made in the Soviet-style. The National Palace is a special pride of the residents of the capital. It was opened in 1974 on the 50th anniversary of the Communist Party of the Moldavian USSR. Huge windows, marble trim, beautiful parquet, an auditorium of 2000 seats. These days here are performing the National Academic Ensemble of Folk Dance “Joc”. Joc is the oldest folk dance ensemble of Moldova; The Romanian word joc means “game, play (amusement activity)” and may refer to various festivities. In Moldova, the years 2007 and 2017 (when the composer celebrated his 70th and 80th birthdays, respectively) were declared the Year of Eugen Doga. Chisinau’s main pedestrianized thoroughfare has been named Eugen Doga Street in his honour. The World Intellectual Property Organization (Geneva) in recognition of his outstanding achievements in music, awarded him with a special certificate in 2007.
The skyline of Chisinau is a blend of contemporary urban and historic architecture. Coupled with the local people’s warmth and [..]
Water Tower or City MuseumThe skyline of Chisinau is a blend of contemporary urban and historic architecture. Coupled with the local people’s warmth and hospitality, it conveys the true essence of Chisinau as a modern city. A perfect place for a traveler, wanderer, romantic, and historian at heart, a trip to Chisinau will surely leave you with long-lasting memories. Historic monuments scattered across the city, make Chisinau an ideal place for a day-long trek with brief sightseeing intervals. One such sight to behold is the Water Tower, located on Bănulescu-Bodoni Street, near the Moldova State University campus. This historical and architectural landmark was built at the end of the 19th century by Alexander Bernardazzi and formed an essential part of the local water supply system. The purely practical designation of this building did not dampen the creativity that went into its design. Divided into two segments, the upper portion of the tower was initially built in wood but destroyed by the earthquake that struck the city at the beginning of the 20th century. The tower was thoroughly rebuilt between 1980 and 1983, using local rock and brick. Nowadays, the renewed building hosts the Historical Museum of Chisinau.
Not far from the Parliament building, along Stefan the Great Boulevard, there is a house that looks like a cake [..]
Hertza HouseNot far from the Parliament building, along Stefan the Great Boulevard, there is a house that looks like a cake - it is the city villa of Titular Counselor Vladimir Herz, built in 1903, supposedly designed by the Austrian architect Heinrich Lonsky in the style of the Viennese Baroque. The building resembles a birthday cake for its protruding from the roof risolits, and the roof featuring somewhat bizarre-looking domes. The exterior decoration - ornate moulding, vases on top of the facade, richly adorned with bas-reliefs in the form of floral ornament and allegorical figures - completes the front outlook. Inside, the house was once rife with decorative elements too - walls and ceilings adorned with frescoes on mythological themes, lavishly decorated with gilded mouldings. Inspired by Viennese Baroque and Art Nouveau, with a touch of Moorish style, the building represents a beautiful piece of eclecticism, so typical of Chisinau architecture at the turn of the century.
In many countries, kilometer zero is also known as zero mile marker, control stations, or control points and is a [..]
Kilometer Zero and Posta MoldoveiIn many countries, kilometer zero is also known as zero mile marker, control stations, or control points and is a particular location, usually in the nation’s capital city from which distances are traditionally measured. Historically, they were markers where drivers could set their odometers to follow the directions in early guide books. The “Km 0” was inaugurated in Chisinau in 2012. It is a metal sign, on which the names of some European and Asian capitals are engraved and which is located on the sidewalk in front of the Postal Office. If you get the chance, you visit the Postal Office and make sure you raise your head to see the beautiful paintings that describe our history. The “km 0” symbol marks the center of the road network, the place from which all road distances will be measured. Interestingly, there are 900 streets with a total length of just over 672 kilometers in Chisinau! Did you know that we have Struve Geodetic Arc in Moldova, which is a UNESCO protected site? The Struve Geodetic Arc is a chain of survey triangulations stretching from Hammerfest in Norway to the Black Sea, through ten countries and over 2,820 km, which yielded the first accurate measurement of a meridian.
Stephen the Great boulevard is located between Libretti Square and Dimitri Cantemir Square. It has a length of 3.8 km. [..]
Stephen the Great boulevardStephen the Great boulevard is located between Libretti Square and Dimitri Cantemir Square. It has a length of 3.8 km. It is the most critical urban highway, the central axis of Chisinau, along which the most important objectives have been located over time. The Great National Assembly Square is also crossed by Stephen the Great Boulevard. In 1812, it became a permanent centre for government business. It had the same type of urban planning done in the Russian Empire. During different periods it was called by other names. So, at the beginning of the 19th century, it was called Millionnaya Street, from the 1840s until 1877 it was called Moskovskaya Street, then Aleksandrovskaya Street (1877–1924), bd. Alexander the Kind (1924–1944). In 1931, the boulevard was divided into two: from Libertatii Square (the southern end of the street) to Armeneasca Street, it kept the name “Alexandru cel Bun,” and from Armeneasca Street to the end, where the Military Hospital was located, it’s called bd. King Carol II. Between 1944–1952 the street was named in honour of Vladimir Lenin. During the Soviet Moldovan era, parades were held in honour of the Great October Socialist Revolution, May Day, and Victory Day. It has been declared a boulevard of Stephen the Great and Saint since 1989, the same year of the adoption of the Romanian language as a state language.
The Metropolitan Cathedral is a magnificent example of Russian architecture in Chisinau. It was built in the early 19th century [..]
The Metropolitan CathedralThe Metropolitan Cathedral is a magnificent example of Russian architecture in Chisinau. It was built in the early 19th century and was designed by architect Avraam Melnikov - one of the finest architects of the Russian Empire. The construction was commissioned by Prince Mikhail Semyonovich Vorontsov, the governor of New Russia, and Metropolitan Gavriil Banulescu-Bodoni. In fact, Chisinau’s urban plan, presented in 1817, was the first to display the cathedral’s location and its basic cruciform layout. Considering the project’s importance, great care was taken for the building to appear elegant, regal, and timeless. Well-known for his many creations across the Russian Empire, Avraam Melnikov was hired to run the project. A fine piece of neoclassic construction, the cathedral boasts an eclectic style, featuring a combination of Byzantine architecture with a hint of Renaissance on a Greek Cross, a perfect brew for neoclassical design. Melnikov’s design is Neoclassical. The facade is very simple and straightforward, with six Doric columns for the entrance. Today, the cathedral stands as the main temple of the Russian Orthodox Church in Chisinau and is a definite must-see for any visitor to the city.
Standing right behind the Holy Gates is a beautiful belfry, an important religious and historic site in Chisinau city. It [..]
BelfryStanding right behind the Holy Gates is a beautiful belfry, an important religious and historic site in Chisinau city. It represents the replica of the original belfry built-in 1830 (the same year as the Metropolitan Cathedral was built) but was demolished in the 1960s and restored in 1998. The belfry comprises four levels with a small chapel on the ground level and several bells at the top. According to the estimate of expenses provided in the project, the auction days were set. In Chisinau, however, no people were found to assume the obligation to build the Cathedral and the Bell Tower. Therefore, such auctions were held in Odessa on October 21, 24, and 28, 1827. Finally, the offer of the merchant Diteriks of 192,000 rubles was accepted. In 1833, Archbishop Dimitrie asked the Governor-General of Novorossiysk and Bessarabia, Prince Vorontsov, to go to the imperial courts, asking permission to pour copper bells (1,500 puds *) from old Turkish weapons. Out of the 1000 copper puddles, as the cannons weighed, five bells were to be cast: the first - considering 400 puds (6.4 tons), the second - 200 puds (3.2 tons), the third - 100 puddles (1.6 tons), the fourth - of 50 puds (800 kg) and the fifth - of 25 puds (400 kg). The bells were cast by craftsman Vasily Lysenko, a bell ringer in Kiev The ringing of bells is often used to symbolize peace and freedom. In many religions, a pealing bell is said to herald the arrival of supernatural power or spirit, be it the voice of angels or revelations’ sound.
The Holly Gate, also known as the Triumphal Arch, is a magnificent structure in Chisinau’s centre. It commemorated Russia’s victory [..]
Arch of TriumphThe Holly Gate, also known as the Triumphal Arch, is a magnificent structure in Chisinau’s centre. It commemorated Russia’s victory over Turkey and was built in 1846 to a design by architect I. Zaushkevich. The Arch is a classic, square-shaped piece of architecture, featuring ornately decorated Corinthian columns and a beautiful clock on the side, chiming every fifteen minutes. It stands 13 meters high and is distinctly divided into two tiers. The lower level comprises four sturdy pylons, decorated with classic Corinthian columns, which give the structure its regal look. Aside from architecture, the Arch (Gate) is also noted for its fascinating history. After the Russians had defeated the Turkish army, Tsar Nikolai I, acting on the request of General M.S. Vorontsov, one of the most prominent war veterans, ordered the making of bells from captured Turkish canons. The bells were to be installed on the bell tower inside the Arch. However, upon their completion, it became apparent that the bells were too big for the building, and therefore, a separate belfry had to be erected nearby to hold the bells.
Government House, where the cabinet meets, is the building opposite the Triumph Arch. It’s notable mainly for its heft and [..]
Government HouseGovernment House, where the cabinet meets, is the building opposite the Triumph Arch. It’s notable mainly for its heft and Soviet-style architecture. The Government House is a government building in Chisinau located on Great National Assembly Square At the beginning of the 20th century, many working demonstrations were held here. After 1924, when the street already bore the name of King Carol II Boulevard, a series of protests and strikes took place on its central square. August 1, 1929, when a one-day political rally was announced. In 1944, the street became a square, with the new authorities naming it Victory Square. In its present form, the central square has existed since December 1951. In 1987-1988, it was enlarged by the Soviets after they removed the ruins of the old Eparchial House. The state flag of the Republic of Moldova is a vertical tricolour of blue, yellow, and red, charged with the coat of arms of Moldova (an eagle holding a shield charged with an aurochs) on the centre bar. The obverse is mirrored. The blue, red, and yellow tricolour of Moldova are identical to Romania’s flag, reflecting its national and cultural affinity.
Gavril Bănulescu-Bodoni was a Romanian clergyman who served as Metropolitan of Moldavia, Metropolitan of Kherson and Crimea, Metropolitan of Kyiv [..]
Mitropolit Gavriil Bănulescu-Bodoni StreetGavril Bănulescu-Bodoni was a Romanian clergyman who served as Metropolitan of Moldavia, Metropolitan of Kherson and Crimea, Metropolitan of Kyiv and Halych, Exarch of Moldo-Wallachia, and Archbishop of Chisinau, being the first head of the church in Bessarabia after the Russian annexation. The local boyars, led by Bănulescu-Bodoni, petitioned for self-rule and the establishment of a civil government based on the Moldavian traditional laws. In 1818, a special autonomous region was created, which had Moldovan (Romanian) and Russian as languages used in the local administration. In 1813, Bănulescu-Bodoni founded a Romanian-language seminary and, in 1814, a printing press. He also oversaw the building of the Chisinau Metropolitan Church (1817) and of the Cathedral. A Romanian translation of the New Testament was published in 1817 and the whole Bible in 1819 in Petrograd. Bănulescu died in 1821 and was buried at the Căpriana Monastery. The canonization of the worthy Metropolitan Gavriil Bănulescu-Bodoni took place on September 3, 2016, the Diocese of Chisinau and Hotin’s founding the head of which was for several years His Eminence Metropolitan. The canonization of Tomos was read at the Căpriana Monastery, the place of eternal rest of the saint. He is commemorated in Chisinau, where a street is named after him near the Nativity Cathedral.
Suisse Guest House is located in the former “Suisse Hotel” building – once the most famous and luxurious hotel in [..]
Former “Suisse Hotel”Suisse Guest House is located in the former “Suisse Hotel” building – once the most famous and luxurious hotel in Chisinau. It is found in the heart of the city near all the major attractions. Today it hosts the Public Library “B.P. Hasdeu”, the Suisse Guest House, and other private apartments. Its construction began in 1835 by Ivan and Anastasia Monastirsky, who built side by side two separate houses 2-stores, facing the central boulevard. The structure was finished only by 1844. In the ’60s of the 19th century, these buildings were united for the Theological Seminary. Since 1870 the building was used for various educational purposes, and in 1874 is rented to a Swiss citizen named – Charles Sailladeni, who opened the “Suisse Hotel “. During WWII, the building was almost destroyed and rebuilt in 1947 according to the E.R. Spirer plan assisted by the architect A.V. Sciusev. The structure keeps a similar facade but gets the 3rd floor built. From 1863 and till World War II, many famous people stayed here, including Feodor Chaliapin – Russian opera singer, King Milan I of Serbia, French novelist Henri Barbusse and many others. You can view the full list of famous people who stayed at the Suisse Hotel here. The famous Suisse Hotel was reborn in Chisinau. For the first time after more than 60 years, the building started receiving its new guests. It happened in late 2011. The Suisse Guest House is located on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the former Suisse Hotel building and currently consists of 5 apartments.
The history of the National Theater of Opera and Ballet of the Republic of Moldova started in 1955 when a [..]
National Theater of Opera and BalletThe history of the National Theater of Opera and Ballet of the Republic of Moldova started in 1955 when a new troupe was formed at the Moldavian Music and Drama Theater. In 1956, the group staged their first production of “Grozovan” by Gershfeld, and a year later premiered “The Fountain of Bakhchisarai” ballet. The new Theater’s first foreign tour took place in 1957 when the opera company traveled to Romania. In 1971, the ballet troupe had their first international appearance in Bulgaria. In 1980, the Opera and Ballet Theater moved into a new, purpose-built facility on Stefan cel Mare Boulevard, where A.Gorshkov and N. Kurennoy designed the building. The facade and the interior were decorated with sculptures by B.Novikov, B.Dubrovin, G.Dubrovin, and N.Sazhin. In May 2012, the Government of Moldova took a decision to name the National Theater of Opera and Ballet after Maria Biesu, Moldova’s famous opera singer. Until her death in 2012, they had been the patron of the “Maria Biesu Invites,” an International Festival of Opera and Ballet, held annually at the Theater since 1990. This major art project has been an essential event for both the Theater and the cultural life of the entire country. Presently, the Theater employs a group of talented, seasoned and young actors, some of whom are graduates from the Choreographic College in Chisinau. In recent years the troupe has traveled far and wide, often touring in the near and far abroad countries - Italy, Romania, Bulgaria, Portugal, France, Spain, Britain, etc. - adjusting its repertoire to the wishes of foreign impresarios, focused on specific national tastes.
Maria Cebotari (original name: Ciubotaru, 10 February 1910 – 9 June 1949) was a celebrated Bessarabian-born Romanian and Austrian soprano [..]
Maria Cebotari StreetMaria Cebotari (original name: Ciubotaru, 10 February 1910 – 9 June 1949) was a celebrated Bessarabian-born Romanian and Austrian soprano and actress, Germany’s most lavish opera and singing stars in the 1930s and 1940s. Beniamino Gigli considered Cebotari one of the greatest female voices he ever heard. Maria Callas was compared to her, and Angela Gheorghiu named Maria Cebotari among the artists she admires the most. Cebotari was born at Chisinau, in Bessarabia, and studied singing at the Chisinau Conservatory, and in 1929 joined the Moscow Art Theater Company as an actress. Soon she married the company’s leader, Count Alexander Virubov. Moving to Berlin with the company, she studied singing with Oskar Daniel for three months and made her debut as an operatic singer by singing Mimi in Puccini’s opera La Bohème at Dresden Semperoper on 15 March 1931. Bruno Walter invited her to the Salzburg Festival, where she sang Euridice in Gluck’s opera Orfeo ed Euridice. From then on, she appeared at many great opera houses, including Vienna State Opera and La Scala Opera House of Milan. Besides her successful career at the opera houses, Cebotari appeared in several films related to opera—such as “Verdi’s Three Women,” “Maria Malibran,” “The Dream of Madame Butterfly.” Her funeral was “one of the most imposing demonstrations of love and honored any deceased artist has ever received” in the history of Vienna, with thousands of people attending.
Located in the very heart of Chisinau, the President Palace is a relatively new monument of national importance. The glass-clad [..]
President PalaceLocated in the very heart of Chisinau, the President Palace is a relatively new monument of national importance. The glass-clad building was erected in 1984-1987. Yuri Tumanean, Arkady Zaltman built the building, and Viktor Iavorski, the style of the building, is high-tech and has elements with symbolic functions. The symbolism is represented through art and innovation. The building was built on the site of the German Lutheran Church, dating back to the 1830s. It was made to be the new building of the Supreme Soviet of the Moldavian S.S. The Moldovan Declaration of Independence of 27 August 1991 was signed and adopted in the palace by the Supreme Soviet. After Moldova gained its independence, the building became the residence of Moldova’s President starting in 2001. The presidency building represents the residence of the elected head of state elected by citizens of the republic – based on universal, equal, and direct electoral law, under free and secret ballot – for four years. The President of the Republic of Moldova, in his/her position as head of state, represents the state and is the guarantor of the national sovereignty and independence and the unity and territorial integrity of the state (Article 77 of the Constitution).
Built under the Soviets in 1976-1979, the former headquarters of the Communist Party now houses the Parliament of the independent [..]
Parliament of the Republic of MoldovaBuilt under the Soviets in 1976-1979, the former headquarters of the Communist Party now houses the Parliament of the independent Republic of Moldova. The building has the shape of an open book with the central part of the facade supported by four high-standing vertical columns. When is Moldovan Independence Day? This public holiday is always celebrated on August 27th. In Romanian, it is called ‘Ziua Independentei.’ This is Moldova’s National Day. The day marks the adoption of the Declaration of Independence from the Soviet Union on August 27th, 1991 Parliament Day is celebrated on May 23, when in 1991, according to the decision of the Supreme Soviet of the Moldovan Soviet Socialist Republic of the 12th legislature, constituted following the first democratic elections, the MSSR transforms into the Republic of Moldova, and the Supreme Soviet becomes the first Parliament of the Republic of Moldova. In the spring of 1990, Moldova held the first parliamentary elections on new principles, based on the majority electoral system. Labour collectives and public organizations nominated candidates for deputy seats, but the elections were the first real electoral competition despite the lack of pluralism. A vital significance for these elections was the rebirth process, which had spread throughout society at that time and exercised a considerable influence on further developments in Moldova.
There is nothing more romantic than a long stroll in the park, and if the park itself is the oldest [..]
Stephen the Great Public GardenThere is nothing more romantic than a long stroll in the park, and if the park itself is the oldest in town, it only adds to the appeal. Should you fancy a quiet oasis of greenery amid the busy urban setting, then Stefan cel Mare Park is undoubtedly the right place for you. Spread across 17 acres of land, the park is located in the very center of Chisinau, sided by the Government building to the east and the house of Parliament to the west, bounded by Stefan cel Mare Boulevard and 31 August Street. The park was established in 1818 by the Russian Army Engineer Corps and later was remodeled into its present shape by Alexander Bernardazzi. For many years, Pushkin Park was named after the great Russian poet Alexander Pushkin, who spent several years in Chisinau in exile in the early 19th century. The bust of Alexander Pushkin marked the center of the park and was created through public subscription by well-known Russian sculptor Alexander Mikhailovich Opekushin in 1885. In fact, Chisinau was the second city in the Russian Empire, after Moscow, to have established a statue commemorating the great poet. Nearby is the Alley of Classics of the Moldovan Literature, which was opened in 1958. The Alley features monuments to the pillars of Moldovan Literature, such as Mihai Eminescu, Grigore Vieru, and many others. Today, the park is also dubbed the “lovers’ park” for being one of the most popular hangouts for the young people who come here regularly to meet, chat and spend time kindling their relationship.
The idea of a sculptural complex was launched by the interwar sculptor Alexandru Plămădeală, who dreamed of creating an open-air [..]
Alley of ClassicsThe idea of a sculptural complex was launched by the interwar sculptor Alexandru Plămădeală, who dreamed of creating an open-air museum. Just during the Khrushchev Thaw, the Alley of Classics was unveiled on April 29, 1958, in the Stephen the Great Park (former “A. S. Pușkin” Park). The sculptural complex from Cișmigiu Gardens in Bucharest served as a model. The Alley is decorated on both sides with red granite busts of classic literary figures and political leaders from Moldova. The Alley is located between the Ștefan cel Mare boulevard and the bronze bust of Alexander Pushkin, set on a granite column and made by Russian sculptor Alexander Opekushin. The Alley of Classics contains 28 busts (including that of Alexander Pushkin, lying at the head of the Alley) in alphabetical order. Nicolae Iorga, the Romanian historian, considers Mihai Eminescu the godfather of the modern Romanian language, in the same way that Shakespeare is seen to have directly influenced the English language. He is unanimously celebrated as the greatest and most representative Romanian poet. Call to action: Visit Pushkin House Museum The great Russian poet Alexander Pushkin was exiled to Bessarabia (nowadays Moldova) for three years by the tsarist administration. He arrived in Chisinau on September 21, 1820, and stayed at the house of General Inzov, which today hosts Pushkin’s museum and is one of only two remaining Pushkin houses in the world; the other being at Moika, St. Petersburg, Russia.
Stephen, the Great Monument, is located outside the main entrance to Stefan cel Mare Park, downtown Chisinau. The bronze monument [..]
Stephen the Great monumentStephen, the Great Monument, is located outside the main entrance to Stefan cel Mare Park, downtown Chisinau. The bronze monument commemorates Stefan cel Mare (“the Great”), Moldova’s Greatest ruler who successfully defended the country from the Turkish invasion in the 15th century. The statue was cast in Bucharest in the early 20th century at the cost of 4,000,000 lei. It was intended to replace the Russian Emperor Alexander II’s monument, which was demolished in 1918 by the Romanian authorities. Sculptor Alexandru Plamadeala traveled far and wide to find a portrait of Stefan cel Mare prior to starting the work on the monument. It is said that the sculptor had made three different copies of the memorial, one of which stands today. Over the years, the memorial has been moved from place to place several times. A few days before the 1940 Soviet occupation of Bessarabia, it had traveled to Vaslui in the eastern part of Romania and then back to Chisinau in 1942. After that, in 1944, the monument was again sent to Romania. Eventually, after a long while, in 1989, it was restored in Chisinau’s original location. The inscriptions on the monument also have been restored. Nowadays situated in the center of the city, the Stefan cel Mare monument is one of the top attractions for tourists visiting the Moldovan capital.
In the centre of the city, on one street or another, at a certain moment you will cross 31 August [..]
31 august 1989 streetIn the centre of the city, on one street or another, at a certain moment you will cross 31 August 1989. The street was built in 1818 and became one of the first streets of the "New City". Initially, the street was called Kievskaya, which, in residential buildings, sat the nobility of the city. In the second half of the 19th century, new buildings appeared: Theological Seminary, the first secondary school for boys, the high school for girls, the Church of St. Panteleimon. In 1944, with the advent of Soviet power, the street was restored to its original name and here appeared the Republican Library, the Fire theatre and the Press House. You've probably wondered why the street is called that, and what events were at the root of renaming it in honour of the last summer day of 89? On 27 August 1989, hundreds of thousands of inhabitants of the country gathered in the central square of Chisinau, asking the authorities to legislate the two main national claims – the status of state language (official) for the Moldovan language (Romanian) and the transition of writing from Russian to Latin. Already on 31 August 1989, the Supreme Soviet adopted the Language Law, officialising the Romanian language as the only "state language", based on the Latin Alphabet, this being the first and most important historical conquest of the National Renaissance Movement of post-war Bessarabia! August 31st is marked in the Republic of Moldova as the day of the Romanian Language.
"My white city you are flowers made of stone" in this way the Chisinau was described in one of the [..]
You are welcome in Chisinau!"My white city you are flowers made of stone" in this way the Chisinau was described in one of the poems of Gheorghe Voda. Today, the city of Chisinau is also called Little Rome, because it is located on 7 hills. The first historical mention of the city dates back to 1436 under the name "Kesenau". Located in the centre of the region, at the intersection of trade routes, the city grew rapidly and soon became one of the most important economic centres in the country. In 1818, Chisinau received the status of a city and became the capital of Bessarabia, a province of the Russian Empire at that time. During the 19th century, the city developed rapidly, but the 20th century showed to be difficult for the whole country, including Chisinau. During this time, political regimes failed, which were followed by many changes in the name of streets, parks, monuments, population and ethnic composition. After The Second World War, the city was destroyed by 70%, followed by extensive reconstruction and redevelopment. The quarters of the old city were demolished for the construction of wide roads and high-rise buildings. This led to the fact that the city expanded and absorbed the surrounding villages, which they became new areas of the city. Today we see in Chisinau a variety of mosaic of times, it seems to be like a journey through time: in the centre of the city, there are parts of old Chisinau with winding streets, then rectangular houses, designed in Tsarist times, among which you can see villas in the neo-Romanian style or stately Soviet modernist buildings.
One of the first buildings that will catch your eye is the City Hall. Be ready now we will travel [..]
City HallOne of the first buildings that will catch your eye is the City Hall. Be ready now we will travel in the 19th century but more precisely at the end of it. When the mayor of the city was Carol Schmidt, he took the initiative to build a new headquarters for the city duma, on the place occupied by the fire department. The design was entrusted to Mitrofan Elladi, then the architect of the city. Alexandru Bernardazzi was invited to help him. The architecture of the building is in an eclectic spirit based on the architecture of the Italian Renaissance. This building has an elegant façade with arched windows. The walls, draped in a faint shade of beige and white, complement a sleek clock tower at the top. The building suffered terrible damage during the Second World War and required considerable efforts to be returned to its former glory. Today, a commemorative plaque to architect Bernardazzi is placed on its front wall. The construction of the duma’s headquarters was completed in 1901. Here is situated the first Tourist Information Center which was opened in 2017, here you’ll find all the details you need about Chisinau.
Back in the days in Chisinau, we also had a Greek community. The Church of St. Pantelimon reminds us about [..]
Church of St. PantelimonBack in the days in Chisinau, we also had a Greek community. The Church of St. Pantelimon reminds us about them, located at the intersection of 31 August 1989 and Vlaicu Pârcălab streets. The author of the project was Alexander Bernardazzi (1831-1907), who served as the chief architect of Chisinau’s city between 1856 and 1878. The church was built of stone, in Byzantine style, being covered with iron sheets. There was found a tomb with 20 places for burial of deceased in the basement of the church. A grid of beautifully executed iron surrounded the sanctuary. Three stone houses were belonging to the church, located around it, donated by Alexandra Constantin Sinadino. In 1944, when the Soviet regime was installed in Bessarabia, many Greeks were forced to leave Chisinau. So, the church had to close on its own in 1947. For a time, this building was used as a warehouse for motion pictures, later became a wine tasting room, officially named Methodical Exhibition Hall. On the 4th of February 1991, the Greek Embassy in Moscow agreed to rebuild the church according to all the rules, and it reopened for officiating divine services.
The building of the Organ Hall has a unique beauty. Initially, the Organ Hall building was designed as the City [..]