What to see in Odessa

The Potemkin Stairs
The Potemkin Stairs (named after the rebellious battleship Potyomkin) are a formal entrance into the city from the direction of the sea. The stairs leading from Prymorsky Boulevard down to the sea were constructed from 1837 through 1841 to the design of the architect F. Bofford. This imposing monument numbers 192 stairsarranged in ten flights and flanked by two-metre thick parapets. The difference in width between the highest (13.4 m) and the lowest (21.6 m) flights produces an optical illusion that enhances the grandeur of the structure.

Odessa Opera House
Magnificent Odessa Opera and Ballet Theater is once echoed with concerts conducted by Peter Tchaikovsky and ballets featuring Anna Pavlova. The interior of this impressive structure, which ranks in grandeur with Milan's La Scala and Moscow's Bolshoi, is richly decorated in Louis XVI style. Exquisite inside decor in the style of Viennese baroque blended with elements of the Italian Renaissance and French rococo, sculptural groups taken from Greek mythology, the stucco moldings and guilt friezes combined with the red velvet of the seats and boxes — all this tends to create a special atmosphere.

Duke de Richelieu Monument
Duke Armand Emmanual Richelieu was Odessa's first mayor. Legend has it that the Duke wanted to build a new city as beautiful as his native Paris.The Duke was born in Paris to an aristocratic family in 1776. The Duke emigrated from France during the French revolution, settling in Russia. He was the governor of Odessa between 1803-1814. When Napoleon was exiled to Elba in 1914, the Duke ended his service to Odessa and returned to France. The Duke then served twice as Prime Minister of France.

The Roman-toga figure was designed by the Russian sculptor, Ivan Petrovich Martos. The statue was cast in bronze by Yefimov in 1826-1828, and unveiled in April 1829. It is the first monument erected in the city. The Duke sculpture is made of bronze and has three bas-reliefs symbolizing trade, justice, and agriculture.

Iosif Deribas Monument
Being a Spaniard by nationality Osip Deribas was born in Naples. In 1772 on invitation of A.G. Orlov-Chesmensky he came to Russia and entered The Black Sea Fleet as a volunteer. He took part in Russian-Turkish war in 1768-1774 and in 1787-1791. From 1794 till 1797 in a rank of vice-admiral he ran the construction of military-trading port in Hadjibay bay (the future Odessa). The new city was built by Deribas under the best models of Genoa, Livorno and Naples. In 2003 in the beginning of Deribasovskaya street a new monument of Iosiph Deribas was established, it was made by A.Knayzin.

The sculptural ensemble of Laokoon is located in front of the archeological museum. Laokoon is the Greek pagan priest. He didn't please the sea god Poseidon who sent snakes upon him and his sons... The famous painting "Laokoon" by El Greco is in the museum of Washington now, there's the sculpture of Laokoon in Vatican. Odessa sculpture is its copy.

City Hall
Situated on the Primorskiy Boulevard the building which houses the City Hall nowadays is the place of the former old Stock Exchange in Odessa. Trading has always been the main source of Odessa budget income, so it is only natural that the Stock Exchange building occupied the foreground of the city and was further converted into the City Council and Mayor place.

Colonnade of the Vorontsov Palace
At the Primorskij Boulevard's west end note the (pre-revolutionary) governor's palace, which incidentally was heavily damaged in 1854 when the British and French bombarded it. Count Vorontsov built a Grecian colonnade which overlooks the harbor and also provides a fine view of the bay.

Odessa Philharmonic
The building occupies the site of the former Odessa new Stock Exchange. Philharmonic Hall, a historic monument in Odessa, was opened in 1899. Designed by famous Odessa architect of Italian origin Mario Bernardazzi, the hall is a fine example of turn of the century architectural character of Odessa and of the Venetian Gothic style.
Odessa Philharmonic

Spaso-Preobrazhenskiy cathedral
In 1795, just one year after the founding of Odessa, the Nickolayev church was built on Sobornaya square. The cathedral became one of the biggest in Russia. It was almost 50 meters wide and over 100 meters long. It could accommodated over 10,000 people and was the pride of Odessa.

In 1932 it was closed down. The square was officially renamed Soviet Army square, but unlike the over 170 other street and park name changes, the newer name never stuck with Odessites. In 1936 Stalin order the Cathedral destroyed. In a cowardly manner the cathedral was dynamited in the night. The church has begun to be rebuilt since 1999.
Spaso-Preobrazhenskiy cathedral

Odessa Islamic Center
A new Arabian cultural center was opened on the 12th of June in Odessa. The building was built by request and by means of one man - 38 years old Adnan Kivan ho was born in Syria and came to Soviet Union in 1980. Now he lives in Odessa and London. A new architect of the center, a 28 years old Dmitry Povstanuk, deserved the favorable reports from Eastern colleagues for a new technology of patterned ligature. The building was decorated with this ligature.




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