English emb., 66-68
1 hour (at a calm pace, excluding museum visits)
There are few places in St. Petersburg and its suburbs that can be compared with the Promenade des Anglais and the surroundings of New Holland in the number of grand-princely palaces. On this ring route, you will get to know the outstanding monuments of St. Petersburg palace architecture, learn about the life of the Russian aristocracy in the nineteenth century and the fate of these buildings and their inhabitants in the twentieth century.
The route begins on Promenade des Anglais with the mansion of Baron Stieglitz. Built in 1862 by the architect A.I. Krakau, a mansion in 1887 was presented to the wedding of Grand Duke Pavel Alexandrovich. In 1918, the prince was shot, and the palace was nationalized.
The next palace on the embankment dates back to the time of Peter the Great, but it acquired its current architectural appearance in the Art Nouveau style in 1913. Court architect R.F. Meltzer rebuilt it for the new owner - Grand Duke Mikhail Alexandrovich, younger brother of Nicholas II.
The Rumyantsev mansion with a 12-column portico is not a grand duke palace, but it is a monument of great historical and cultural value. In 1802, the building was acquired by Count N.P. Rumyantsev, an outstanding educator and philanthropist. May 28, 1831 the first private public museum in Russia was opened here. Today, the mansion houses the exposition of the State Museum of the History of St. Petersburg.
We go further along the Promenade des Anglais, leave the Annunciation bridge on the left, and now - one of the most romantic buildings in St. Petersburg. This palace was built at the end of the 19th century for the well-known philanthropist Vera Nikolaevna von Derviz, then passed into the possession of the treasury, after the revolution it was nationalized. In 1959, the first Wedding Palace was opened here in our city and throughout the country.
On the square of Labor stands the majestic Nicholas Palace, erected in 1853-1861 according to the project of A.I. Stackenschneider for the Grand Duke - the son of Nicholas I. In the Soviet years, the building was transferred to trade unions, hence its modern name - “Palace of Labor”.
The next route point is on the embankment of the Moika River. Your path lies through Labor Square, along the Kryukov Canal, past the Naval Museum, through the Kisses Bridge (do not forget to kiss your other half). Then you will turn to the Moika, and the Yusupov Palace will appear in front of you. This famous 18th century architectural ensemble is famous for its unique interiors, as well as the fact that Grigory Rasputin was killed here in 1916.
Now turn around and head back along the Moika embankment. Having crossed the Kryukov canal flowing into it along the Matveev bridge, you will see the palace of Grand Duke Alexander Mikhailovich, built for the grandson of Nicholas I. Now here is the Lesgaft University of Physical Culture, Sports and Health.
At Moika 122 a real architectural masterpiece is situated. It embodied the elements of different eras and styles and resembles the ancient romantic castles of medieval France. This is the Alekseevsky Palace - the estate of the Grand Duke Alexei Alexandrovich, and today - the House of Music.
Another bridge is Khrapovitsky, and another luxurious aristocratic manor. Built in the 1790s, the palace of Counts Bobrinsky for more than a hundred years has been the center of secular and cultural life in St. Petersburg - Pushkin, Zhukovsky, Vyazemsky, Gorchakov and even members of the reigning family were guests here.
This route ends, and the circle is almost closed. But you can relax after this busy trip in one of the many establishments or on a bench in a city park on the island of New Holland.