Wednesday, November 20th 2019

Odessa Mama or the pearl at the sea – 2

Odessa is simply magnificent with its marvelous architecture. Its shady lanes, beautiful lightly pastel buildings and cozy squares create in the city a certain air of intimacy. Odesa’s history as a thriving trade center has left the city with some splendid architecture from the 18th and 19th centuries and a multifaceted, irrepressible spirit.

A grand Renaissance-era theater finished in 1887 which still hosts a range of performances. The theater is regarded as one of the world’s finest. The first opera house was opened in 1810 and destroyed by fire in 1873. The modern building was constructed in neo-baroque.

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Odessa Opera and Ballet Theater

Some buildings display a mixture of different styles, such as distinct French architecture with a distinct Russian flavor, and some are built in the Art Nouveau Style which was in fashion at the turn of the century. Its stately 19th century classical architecture is set on orderly planned streets that are surrounded with green space, giving the city an air of elegance.

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Strikingly ornate buildings of the late 19th and early 20th century are reminiscent of Right Bank Paris. During last several centuries the life of the city was affected by communities of Greeks, Italians, French people and Jews.

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Most of the city’s 19th-century houses were built of limestone mined nearby. Abandoned mines were later used and broadened by local smugglers. This created a gigantic complicated labyrinth of underground tunnels beneath Odessa, known as “catacombs“. During World War II, the catacombs served as a hiding place for partisans. They are a now a great attraction for extreme tourists. Such tours, however, are not officially sanctioned and are dangerous because the layout of the catacombs has not been fully mapped and the tunnels themselves are unsafe. The tunnels are a primary reason why no subway system was ever built in Odessa.

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Odessa City Hall, the seat of the city’s municipal authorities

One of the best samples of picturesque buildings in the city is Odessa Passage. It is a passage and a hotel on Deribasovskaya Street in the centre of Odessa. It has 4floors. On the ground floor there are many boutiqs and on other 3floors there is a hotel. Odessa Passage was built at the end of the 19th century and was the best hotel in Southern Russia until the Krasnaya Hotel was openned.

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An interior and the ex-terrier of Passage building are decorated by numerous sculptures. The Passage houses multiple shops, restaurants, and offices. Passage is the most picturesque market of Odessa.

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Interior of Passage

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Wall decorations of Passage

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Interior of Passage

Odessa’s Philharmonic Theatre’s design resembles the Doge’s Palace in Venice.

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Odessa Philharmonic Theater

The main entrance is by a large open-sided, roofed gallery, called a loggia. The ceiling of this open entry is painted with the twelve symbols of the Zodiac.

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Entrance to the Odessa Philharmonic Theater

As i said before Odessa is just magnificent with its diverse splendid architecture and peculiar cozy atmosphere. It is one of the several places in Ukraine very well worth visiting. You should come here to walk Odessa’s street, enjoy its parks and seaside, and eat in one of the welcoming cafes or restaurants.


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