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Seven Stalin's skyscrapers or Seven Stalin’s sisters

Moscow is a city built on seven hills. One of its symbols are seven high-rises buildings - masterpieces of monumental Stalinist architecture.

The history of the creation of Stalin's skyscrapers

In 1947, Moscow turned 800 years old, the government decided to erect 8 high-rise buildings in honor of this event - according to the first number of the city.All 8 skyscrapers were laid on the day of the 800th anniversary of Moscow - September 7, 1947.Their construction began in the post-war decade when the city was recovering from the devastation. According to Joseph Stalin, these skyscrapers were to become a symbol of the restoration of the USSR after the war and a symbol of the new original architecture.

Simultaneously with the foundation of the skyscrapers, a monument to Knyaz Yuri Dolgoruky, the founder of Moscow, was opened and it was him who blessed Moscow for entering a new era.

Active construction work began which was shrouded in some secrecy. Therefore, the construction of skyscrapers did not cause a great resonance in society.

One of the Stalinist skyscrapers was not completed due to a number of financial difficulties. Later the largest hotel in Europe, the Rossiya Hotel, was built on its foundation.

 The building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow

The first Stalinist skyscraper was commissioned in 1953 several months earlier than the building of Moscow State University.

The building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is located on Smolenskaya-Sennaya Square. The height of the building is 172 m, the area of ​​internal premises is 65,000 square meters. The building has 28 elevators. There are the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations and the Ministry of Trade of the Russian Federation on the 27 floors of the building.

Initially the architectural spire of the building was absent as the building could not withstand the load.Therefore, it was decided to install a decorative spire made of steel sheets. It is also an interesting fact that the building began to be built from top to bottom, initially building a frame.

The tower style skyscraper owes to Stalin, who rejected the original sketches and insisted on the tower type. Subsequently, this decision made the tower style and Stalinist skyscrapers legendary and recognizable throughout the world.

The main building of Moscow State University

The building of Moscow State University is the tallest building of the sevens Stalinist skyscrapers. Its height is 236 meters, it has 36 floors. 40,000 tons of steel were used only for the construction of the frame, 200 million bricks were used to build the walls. The star on the spire of the building weighs about 12 tons. 68 elevators are used to move in the building.

The architect of the building was the famous Soviet architect Iofan. He initially came up with a proposal to build a skyscraper on the site of the observation deck on the Sparrow Hills. However, geologists opposed this, they believed that the building could slide from the hill. As a result, Iofan was removed from the project, and the architect Rudnev continued its implementation.

According to the tradition of that time, prisoners were involved in the construction of the building. Thousands of builders needed to live somewhere. For these purposes, the village of Solntsevo was erected next to the building which later became the metropolitan area.

The building of Moscow State University officially opened its doors on September 1, 1953. Until 1990, the Moscow State University building was the tallest in Europe and ceded its superiority to the Messertum skyscraper in Frankfurt.

Aviators House

This Stalinist skyscraper is located on Kudrinskaya Square (in Soviet times, the square was called Uprising Square). This house was originally planned as residential.

The building was completed in 1954 and has 24 floors, 18 of which are residential. The height of the Aviator House is 156 m, it has about 450 apartments with high ceilings.

Housing in the Stalinist skyscraper was distributed among the representatives of the Soviet elite. However, most of the house was inhabited by astronauts, aviators, designers of space and aviation equipment. Therefore, the skyscraper received such a name.

Also in this building, a bomb shelter and other underground structures were built outside the ground building.

Hotel "Ukraine"

The building of hotel "Ukraine” is located at the intersection of Kutuzovsky Prospekt and Novy Arbat. The height of the building is 206 meters, it ranks second among the Stalinist skyscrapers in height. It was built between 1953 and 1957 and was named after the homeland of General Secretary Nikita Khrushchev.

Hotel "Ukraine" is one of the largest hotels in Europe. It has about 500 rooms, several restaurants, bars, as well as a 50-meter pool.

From 2005 to 2010, the building underwent restoration. On April 28, 2010, the legendary Stalinist skyscraper opened as a Radisson hotel  and is called the Radisson Royal Hotel.

High-rise on Kotelnicheskaya Embankment

This Stalinist skyscraper began to be built back in 1938 but was completed after the Great Patriotic War in 1952. The building has 32 floors and a height of 176 meters.

This skyscraper was originally planned to be given to creative intelligentsia. Famous poets Voznesensky and Yevtushenko, singer Zykina, actresses Mordyukova and Ranevskaya, and ballerina Ulanova lived here.

Hotel “Leningradskaya”

The construction of this building lasted from 1949 to 1954 under the guidance of architects Polyakov and Boretsky.

Among all the Stalinist skyscrapers, this one has the most modest height of 136 meters. However, despite its modest size, the hotel has a sophisticated interior - the architect Polyakov brought to the work of masters in ancient Russian architecture and church architecture.The building has a huge number of sculptures, bas-reliefs, mosaics, wrought iron elements, massive chandeliers. The largest chandelier illuminates 7 floors!

Since 2008 the building has been hosting the Hilton hotel which is called the Hilton Moscow Leningradskaya  which has 275 rooms.

High-rise building on Garden Ring

This Stalinist skyscraper was erected by architects Mezentsev and Dushkin. The height of the building is 138 meters. Architects won the right to place the house on the highest section of Garden Ring. Despite its modest size, compared to other Stalinist skyscrapers, the building looks impressive and visually can be compared with the highest Stalinist skyscraper - the building of Moscow State University.

The building houses the Ministry of Transport Engineering, the Moscow Interbank Currency Exchange, Transstroy Corporation, the Russian Union of Railway and Transport Builders.

Interesting facts about Seven Stalin's skyscrapers

  • Brigades consisting of German prisoners of war were also used as labor in the construction of buildings;
  • The construction of the eighth high-rise building - an administrative building in Zaryadye - was stopped in 1953 due to the death of Stalin. The project was frozen, and 10 years later, the Hotel “Rossiya“ grew on this place;
  • In the original design, the tallest building was to have 32 floors. During the construction process, all the skyscrapers “added” in growth. Moscow State University became 36-story, and the Leningradskaya hotel became 26-story (in the project, its height was only 16 floors);
  • The building of Moscow State University was originally supposed to be a hotel;
  • In one of the projects, the building of Moscow State University instead of the spire was to be crowned with a statue, either of Lomonosov, or of Stalin himself. Students still tell the legend of a bronze statue of a leader immured in the basement. In fact, the project was simply reworked, the statue was replaced with a spire, and Lomonosov, significantly reduced in size, was placed as a monument near the walls of the university;
  • The spire of the main building of Moscow State University is not gilded. The spire and the star are lined with yellow glass which is coated on the inside with aluminum;
  • Hotel "Ukraine" is also a residential building. The central part is the hotel, and the side buildings are occupied by apartments;
  • The building on Kotelnicheskaya Embankment is the record holder among “sisters” in the number of appearances in films. It appears in at least 16 films.

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