Creme de la Crimea. The Vorontsov Palace
‘It’s been long since I was totally smitten by something the same way I was by the beauty of this place’, our designer, Victoria tells about her visit at the Vorontsov palace in Crimea.
Built as a summer residence for a Prince Mikhail Vorontsov (1782-1856) it represents a magnificent mixture of architectural styles which works beautifully with its natural surroundings. The Prince was a known anglophile (he spent his childhood and youth years in London) and it comes as no surprise that the Palace was designed by the British Royal Court architect Edward Blore. Almost 20 years in the making (1828-1948), it was, may we say, worth waiting.
‘Palace’s walls are built from the same blocks of stone that you see if you look around. Their texture and colours are in sync with the colours of the craggy scenery. The resemblance is especially vivid when you look at Ai-Petri peak rising in the distance,’ adds Victoria.
The palace has northern and southern facades. Each built in different architectural style. The northern one overlooks the already mentioned Ai-Petri mountain and the southern — the Black Sea. ‘What impressed me the most was the horseshoe arch over the southern entrance with its Alhambra-like Moorish elements. For our first campaign we drew our inspiration from exactly this place.’
The interiors match the eclectic style of the exteriors. ‘Each room is special and decorated in its own individual manner. The Grand Dining Room, for example, combines the medieval feel of Tudor era with the exquisite intricacy of Moorish-style majolica decorating the fountain. I especially loved The Blue Room, couldn’t take my eyes off all its detailing. The beautiful stucco plants on the eggshell blue walls, the room furnished in the style of Russian classicism — I have found this combination so very me, it is something that reflects in my designs for Son Trava.’
The overall magnificence of the place wouldn’t be complete without the landscaped park surrounding it. ‘It is huge and truly a masterpiece built by a German gardener Carolus Keebach. What fascinated me about it was the feeling of privacy, as if you were completely alone although there were always other people in the park. It is made so that the paths, nooks and crannies feel very secluded. I have also noticed a very clever usage of water: little waterfalls and streams made the most meditative sound accompaniment to my walk.’
‘It’s a dream of a place! One could only imagine how it must have felt to live here with all the views and architectural beauty. I’m happy it is now turned into a museum so that everyone can come and enjoy and be inspired like I was. Who knows, you may find traces of the Vorontsov palace in Son Trava future designs.’