The Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw
The Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw Reviews
The Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw Aug 08, 2009
I have only been in Warsaw two times and both times this building had an impact on my stay. First time I was staying at the Marriott hotel just next to it, and every time we took the curtains away it was standing there in front of us. This time I spent some time there with my friends, who like me really enjoy it as a building and activity centre.
The Palace of Culture and Science or Pałac Kultury i Nauki, is still the tallest building in Poland, the eighth tallest building in the European Union, and the world's 187th tallest building at 237 meters. Construction started in 1952 and lasted until 1955. The building was a gift from the Soviet Union to the people of Poland, it is said that they could choose from a subway or this building.
The tower was constructed, using Soviet plans, almost entirely by 3500 workers from the Soviet Union, of whom 16 died in accidents during the construction. The Soviets were housed at a new suburban complex at Poland's expense, complete with its own cinema, food court, community centre and the swimming pool.
The architecture of the building is closely related to several similar skyscrapers built in the Soviet Union of the same era, most notably the Moscow State University and the Moscow Kremlin Spasskaya tower. However, the main architect Lev Rudnev incorporated some Polish architectural details into the project by traveling around Poland and seeing the architecture. The monumental walls are headed with pieces of masonry copied from renaissance houses and palaces of Kraków and Zamość.
Shortly after opening, the building hosted the 5th World Festival of Youth and Students. Many visiting dignitaries toured the Palace, and it also hosted performances by notable international artists, such as a 1967 concert by the Rolling Stones, the first by a major western rock group behind the Iron Curtain.
The view from the top is magnificent if you are lucky to be there a cloudless day. We had that luck and the ticket of 20 zloty in order to take you to the top is worthwhile.
Part of the Returning to Warsaw in Poland again and again travel blog
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