A new construction by Ivan Kniazev -
“Summer Palace” restaurant is opened for the public since this summer.
The list of authors and contributors to the project includes:
· Architectural and interior design by Ivan Kniazev’s architectural studio. Ivan Kniazev - head and director, Irina Efendieva and Svetlana Sokolova - chief architects of the project.
· Monumental art (wall paintings and bas-reliefs) by Andrey Juravlev and Anna Karpova (“Juravlev & Karpova” art studio).
· Sculptures by Pavel Ignatiev and Denis Prasolov (“Ignatiev & Prasolov” art studio) and by sculptor Vladislav Monachinsky.
Despite its historical name the building is actually brand new. It have risen literally in the middle of a plain
field which by some happy chance remained unoccupied just down the road from Saint-Petersburg to Peterhof opposite
to already functioning recreation center “The Russian village” near Shuvalovka. The function and location on the most
favorite tourist route throughout all of Russia have predetermined the concept, style and image of the building. This
route winds through the chain of royal and aristocratic summer residences such as Strelna, Mikhailovka, Znamenka,
Peterhof and Oranienbaum which represent different varieties of russian baroque . So the new palatial restaurant was
intended exactly for pilgrims to this Mecca of Russian tourism.
This strategic move was developed by the client Vadim Lezhnin during the series of consultations with famous restaurant
owner Sergey Gutzait. The author of the project, architect Ivan Kniazev, already has a history of fruitful collaboration
with Gutzait. Ivan has designed many projects for his holding all of which are examples of modern traditionalism
following the principles of “Prince of Wales Institute of Architecture” which he graduated under the mentorship
by Leon Krier and Dimitrios Porfirios in 1993.
The general approach of this school is based on His Royal Highness Prince Charles’ fundamental ideas according to
which modernism architecture is inappropriate in historical surroundings which modernists inevitably destroys.
Hence a mandatory recreation of strictly traditional architecture that embodies the basic source of
our civilization as such. Thus it was clear from the beginning that the building should be designed in
pure Baroque style without even the slightest traces of modernism.
Interior decoration of the building was designed following the examples offered by one of the most sophisticated
Baroque and Classical architects ever working on Russian land – Antonio Rinaldi, all the more this famous tourist
route leads to his most splendid construction, “Chinese Palace” in Oranienbaum - rarely visited but nonetheless
the best preserved country royal residence in Russia. Fortunately Ivan Kniazev’s attempts to save stylistic unity
have found a strong support by the client - support that offered much help in struggle with contractors and the choice
of quality materials despite the budget dwindling under attacks of economic recession. Not without some dramatic turns
the building was finally completed and put into functioning. Today the restaurant’s grand and beautifully decorated
halls together with summer outdoor terraces can welcome up to one thousand visitors.
Most distinct feature of the building is abundance of newly designed but typically classical sculptures. Among
them are statues of Venus, Mars and Fortune (“Ignatiev & Prasolov” sculpture studio), bas-reliefs of Bachus and Flora
(“Juravlev & Karpova” art studio) and caryatids (by sculptor V.Monachinsky). Statue of Fortune
(made of artificial stone) which crowns the roof is a focal point of the building. Interior decorations were
designed by I. Kniazev and cast by A.Proskuriak.(the general contractor on interior works was “Termin” company) The sconces, also designed by I. Kniazev, were manufactured
by “World of Metal” company. Wrought-iron railings were made by A.Pirumov. And finally, all restaurant
interiors are literally “lighten up” by gorgeous chandeliers and sconces designed on the base of historical
prototypes and manufactured by “Restamp” company.
The exact address of this new tourist attraction is Peterhof road, 130/7. Main page.