The most fashionable store in Moscow will return its historical appearance

The most fashionable store in Moscow will return its historical appearance


An oasis of unbridled shopping was once a neo-Gothic monument

The grandiose department store on Petrovka has been considered a symbol of glamor and “beautiful life” over the past few decades, but it is also a symbol of old Moscow. The Muir and Meriliz general store was built in 1907-08. in the then fashionable neo-Gothic style, but after almost 120 years the time has come to restore it. This is what the city authorities will do.

The associations with a medieval castle are almost impossible to overcome here: the Gothic towers and spiers, however, hide behind them a high-tech and well-planned building with spacious shopping arcades, which throughout its existence retains its original function. Nevertheless, they will be able to serve more than one generation of Muscovites after high-quality restoration, which will now be carried out by highly qualified specialists. They will have to carefully clear the surfaces of the walls from late plaster deposits, as well as engage in the restoration of decorative elements.

It is expected that restoration specialists will restore the pinnacles (decorative turrets), recreate the lost crucifers (decorative finials), and emblems on the wimpergs (pointed decorative pediment). The tiled cladding and metal fencing will be put in order, and the waterproofing of the balconies will be restored. Experts will begin restoration of the facades after the onset of stable warm weather – which means very soon.

Let us remember that the architect Roman Klein worked on the original neo-Gothic building – he later built the building of the Museum of Fine Arts on Volkhonka and many other iconic Moscow buildings. The widespread use of metal structures designed by the famous engineer Vladimir Shukhov provided an abundance of light and internal space. By the way, already at the beginning of the 20th century the store was equipped with elevators for visitors and a system of lifts for delivering goods – a rare thing for pre-revolutionary Moscow! Anastasia Tsvetaeva, born in 1894, talks about this miracle of progress in her “Memoirs”:

“The second new product that illuminated Moscow with light and splendor was the multi-story Muir and Meriliz store on Teatralnaya Square. How many stories, how many admirations, disputes, gatherings, walks and trips there!.. And here we are standing in front of something that has been discussed in Moscow for a long time and the story about which is fabulous: an elevator. The room, bright as the light itself, easily and airily glides up and down, taking and bringing back ladies, gentlemen, children, falling into the flights of floors with the fearlessness of witchcraft, emerging from the abyss with the invulnerability of enchantment… Stand and watch! Without end! When someone’s hand firmly takes my hand and we move to what is called the “elevator”.


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