Villa, Szczecin
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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One of the most impressive early-20th century villas in the city of Szczecin. The house forms an important architectural landmark in the high-class residential area known as Nowy Westend.

History

The villa is located in the former suburb of Nowy Westend, originally founded beyond the city limits in the late 19th/early 20th century as a private housing estate owned by Johannes Quistorp, a merchant from Szczecin. Erected in the years 1902-1903 for the wealthy wholesaler Rudolf Krahnstöver, the house was designed by Hugo Hölling, an architect based in Szczecin. In 1914 and 1924, some minor alterations were made, in each case based on the design produced by the architect Franz Plötz. In May 1935, Kurt Ranjott, a merchant, became the new owner of the house, his business being primarily in the sale of cocoa, tea, coffee and chocolate which were sold through specialist outlets. During the postwar period, the building served as student accommodation for the local school of art. After the school itself ceased functioning in the 1990s, the house stood abandoned for a couple of years. In the mid-1990s, a series of comprehensive renovation works were performed, with the new owners of the house being the Regional Fund of Environmental Protection and Water Management as well as the Regional Water Management Administration. The first of the two institutions mentioned above still occupies the building today.

Description

The former house of Rudolf Krahnstöver is located in the north-western part of the district of Szczecin formerly known as Nowy Westend and later renamed as Łękno. Located on the eastern side of the circular Jakub Wujek square, at the corner of the Solskiego street, the house was positioned so that its front façade with main entrance faces the street (i.e. towards the north-west). The second, much more impressive façade of the house faces the square located south-west of the house. The villa is surrounded by a large garden overgrown with old trees and is accompanied by a garage located south of the house itself.

The building’s eclectic design, with its picturesque outline, is reminiscent of the style known as the German Renaissance. The villa was designed on a complex, irregular plan approximating the shape of a square, with a wider, rectangular north-eastern section and a slightly narrower south-eastern section with avant-corps at its corners; another, three-sided avant-corps projects out of the south-western façade. The single-storey structure with basement underneath is highly distinctive due to its sophisticated design, the entire house being a cluster of different sections of varying height. The house features an ensemble of tall roofs of both the gable and the hip type, forming a complex shape which also includes the octagonal roof of the corner turret.

The villa is a brick buildings, its walls covered with plaster. A few portions of the walls (the gables and the uppermost storey of the turret) are half-timbered, while the verandah is a post-and-beam wooden structure. The roofs - including the tall roof of the turret - are covered with beaver-tail roof tiles.

The asymmetrical façades of the mansion were designed in a rather informal manner, their appearance dictated by the overall shape of the building itself. The wall base is separated from the rest of the façade by a cornice. The bipartite and tripartite windows are topped with segmental arches, with the axes of the windows on individual storeys being offset against one another. The most notable features of the front façade, with the main entrance located near the left (northern) corner are the central avant-corps and the corner turret projecting slightly ahead of the façade. Both the triangular gable of the avant-corps and the two uppermost storeys of the turret feature exposed timber framing. The most prominent, south-western façade is partitioned into distinct sections by the aforementioned corner turret, a semi-hexagonal single-storey avant-corps as well as a wide, corner avant-corps preceded by a two-storey, wooden verandah and topped with a triangular gable with exposed timber frame. The primary design features of these façades are carried over to the other two, albeit in a rather more restrained manner. All façades feature plasterwork and stucco detailing in the form of corner rustication, decorative window surrounds or ornamentation displayed on the panels below the windows. The interior follows an informal layout with a rectangular, two-storey hall in the centre. The staircase inside the hall leads up to the gallery above.

The building is accessible to visitors during the opening hours of the institution which occupies it.

compiled by Maciej Słomiński, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Szczecin, 27-10-2014.

Bibliography

  • Studium Historyczno-urbanistyczne dla obszaru części osiedla Pogodnow granicach ulic: Kochanowskiego - Traugutta - Mickiewicza - Okrzei - Budzysza Wosia - Ostrawicka - Wincentego Pola w dzielnicy Zachód w Szczecinie, prepared by E. Pęska, M. Słomiński, W. Zakrzewski, J. Grzelak, part 1., część analityczna, Szczecin 2003, typescript available at the Municipal Centre for Urban Design in Szczecin, pp. 30-31
  • Architectural monument record sheet, compiled by B. Makowska, 1996, typescript available at the Regional Monuments Protection Office in Szczecin.

General information

  • Type: villa
  • Chronology: poczatek XX w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Ludwika Solskiego 3, Szczecin
  • Location: Voivodeship zachodniopomorskie, district Szczecin, commune Szczecin
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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