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Grand opera house & local landmark opened in 1953, hosting global opera & ballet stars.
“The National Art Gallery is situated in the former royal palace of Bulgaria. In the halls where once ministers and royalties took decisions, today you can make a historic run through the artworks of Bulgaria’s most prominent artists. Be sure to not miss the bright winter garden, dedicated to temporary photographic exhibitions. Behind the gallery/palace is a small and quiet park.”
“Built in 1907 by the Austrian architects Helmer & Felner, the National Theatre is one of the most ornate buildings in Sofia. The 40 metre high façade, is fronted by a large pediment, supported on six white marble columns, depicting Apollo and the muses. The twin towers that rise up behind are crowned with sculptures of the goddess Nike.The interior was destroyed by fire in 1923, and restored again six years later increasing the theatres seating capacity to over 1000. The ornate main hall has an 850 audience capacity. The stage curtain, with its mythical firebird motive from Stravinsky’s ballet, was woven by women from Panagyurishte.”
“It was built on the initiative and with the financial support of the benefactor Mall Efendi Kad Seyfulllah. Therefore, in some sources, the mosque is also referred to as the Molla Effendi Mosque or as the Kad Seyfulllah. On the arch above the door on the stone with paint is written text that cannot be read. Below it is the date 974, which gives reason to believe that it was built in 974 by the Hijra (Muslim yearbook) or 1566-1567. Architecture The mosque's main building is quadrangular. Among the four corner cubes are the central cubes and the minaret. In front of it there is an annex (tetim) with three small cubes. It was built in memory of the late wife of Qad Seyfulllah Effendi. Bath bashi mosque in the late 19th century Bashi mosque bath is an interesting architectural creation that reflects the specifics of Ottoman architectural thought in the 16th century. It was built by the Ottoman architect Sinan. Its walls are made of carved stone and bricks, with rows of red bricks placed between the stone rows. At the four corners, as in the Makbul Ibrahim Pasha mosque in Razgrad, small towers are erected, under which support structures are lowered through hoops. At the corners of the sixteen beam hoops are placed double breastplates. The walls of the prayer hall and the arches are of stone. The columns are made of a single stone body and are matte. Crowns are double rows of stalacmid. The arch above the front door, which ends with a wreath, is also a stone. The central dome is covered with lead plates. The minaret of the mosque is an exquisite architectural work. According to Evliya Chelebi, she is not equal in beauty in Sofia. The interior of the mosque has acquired its present appearance as a result of several repairs. The last major overhaul was made in the 1920s with the financial support of Turkish Ambassador to Sofia Fethi Bay. Partial repairs, painting, plastering, etc. were made after World War II. In 1983, a complete restoration of the mosque exterior was carried out, designed by arch. Chr. Ganchev from the National Institute for Cultural Monuments. In recent decades, repairs have been made with donations of Turkish and Arabic waqfs. With their support, an underfloor heating system was built. The present state of the Banya Bashi mosque gives it the possibility of praying with about 700 Muslims on Friday days and nearly 1,200 Muslims in the Bayrams. The capacity of the mosque is between 500-700 people. That is why during the holidays and Friday prayers, the worshipers pray outside the sidewalk. In the past, mosques of Efendi Qadi Seifulllah and Emin Dede were buried around the mosque.”
“Alexander Nevsky Cathedral is the crown jewel of Sofia. It is one of the largest Eastern orthodox cathedrals in the world. Its foundation stone was laid in 1882. However, most of the construction work actually took place between 1904 and 1912.The main dome is 45 m tall and Christian Lord’s Prayer is inscribed with thin golden letters around it. The gorgeous chandeliers suspended from the domes were specially made for the church in Munich, Germany.”
“Russian Orthodox Church. Its construction began at the end of the 19th century (the exact date is unknown, as different architectural projects alternate), and lasted for many years, consecrated in 1914 on the eve of World War I. The building was built on a plot of the Russian Embassy designed by Mikhail Preobrazhensky specifically for the needs of Russian immigrants in the capital. The murals are the work of a team of artists headed by Vasily Perminov (one of the authors of the murals in Alexander Nevski). The five small domes of the church are gilded. The central dome is 19 m high. The bells were donated by Russian Tsar Nicholas II. Initially conceived as a chapel to the Russian Embassy in Bulgaria, the temple almost immediately lost its role after 1917. After the Second Russian Revolution, priests and bishops of the so-called "Russian Abroad Church" began to serve in it, and the already established temple became the center of numerous Russian immigration in the country. After 1947, the temple was transferred to the diocese of the Moscow Patriarchate, which governs it to this day. (It is considered patriarchy or Stavropiy of this patriarchate). In terms of architecture, the temple was built in the traditions of Russian church architecture from the 19th century - with preserved ancient Russian elements - the so-called "bulbs" (cubes), combined with traditional Old Russian mosaics and woodcarvings, it also bears the marks of more modern architecture and painting. Characteristic of the plan of the temple is the non-axial position of the entrance (the narthex), relative to the altar. Ie the entrance is on the south side, and the altar, according to ancient tradition, points to the east - the two elements form a right angle. In the crypt of the temple is the tomb of Archbishop Seraphim Sobolev (St. Seraphim, Archbishop Bogucharski, Sophia Wonderworker). Thousands of believers and unbelievers approach him asking for miraculous help before exams, important decisions in life or in times of illness and need. Often, they record their prayers on paper and put them in a special box next to his grave.”