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Hotel 'Warszawa'



With the beginning of the 20th century Warsaw, the capitol of Poland, entered a new era in building construction. The revolutionary concrete and steel frames alowed buildings and houses to rise higher. Starting with 1907 one can notice several big rowhouses and commercial buildings constructed in the heart of the city. They passed the line of 6 stories and rose to the height of over 25-30 meters. Even bigger buildings rose after 1910. Eight or nine stories was quite high in Warsaw, dominated by 3-4-5 story rowhouses and buildings. The super big rowhouse era eventually evolved to tht what we can call Warsaw's early skyscraper.

The one visible on my picture was once called "Prudential" and belonged to this well known company before WW2. The "Prudential" was Warsaw's first so called skyscraper. Rising to the height of 60 meters with it's 14 floors it was a realgiant in our rising metropolis. Except for it's height, the "Prudential" was also one of the most modern buildings in the city. The building's modernistic tower finished with art-deco detail was designed by Marcin Weinfeld in 1931. In 1934 the newly installed radio antenna on it's roof made it even higher.

The war was quite tragic for the building. In 1939 it wasn't damaged, but at the time of the 1944' Warsaw Uprising against the nazis it was almost completly destroyed. The city's tallest building was a great target for the german bombers, tanks and guns, especially with the polish flag waving on it's roof at the time of the uprising. The "Prudential" was hit many times. The fire destroyed most of the interior. Eventually except it's steel frame and parts of the ruined elevation nothing survived.

In 1949 there came a decision of rebuilding the tower to serve as a hotel. Architect Marcin Weinfeld was chosen to create a new design for the elevation. Due to the rebuilding the tower lost it's original modernistic shape and all of it's art-deco detail. It was all replaced with the socreal style and reamains in that form till today. From 1949 to 2004 it was serving as the hotel "Warszawa".

In 2005 there came the idea of rebuilding the tower bringing back it's original pre-war form, it is discussed today.

My sketch shows the building in it's looks at the fall od 2005. It is a typical fast architectural sketch, not to much detail or finishing.

The building before WW2:

At the time of the Warsaw Uprising '44:

The building in 1946:


Time: 90 minutes
Size: 35x50cm
Date: 15.07.2005
Tool: Faber Castell 0,5mm pen.
Image size
768x1024px 205.16 KB
Shutter Speed
10/20000 second
Focal Length
8 mm
ISO Speed
Date Taken
Sep 18, 2005, 1:09:57 PM
© 2006 - 2024 kilanziom
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