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UNESCO Sites, Part 3 – South Moravia

 
photo:  (czechtourism.com)
 

All UNESCO Sites guarantee a unique experience and are undoubtedly worth seeing. If you are planning a trip to South Moravia, do not forget to visit the UNESCO sites in the region – the Tugendhat Villa in Brno and the Lednice-Valtice Cultural Landscape in the southern tip of Moravia.

 

Tugendhat Villa

Tugendhat Villa is considered a building that has defined new standards of modern housing. It is one of the major international buildings of modern architecture built in the Functionalist Style. It was designed in 1928 by the famous German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe for the family of the owner of a textile factory in Brno, Fritz Tugendhat. The house was revolutionary in its time for several reasons. The glass walls connected the house with its surroundings – the windows of the main residential space were embedded into the floor so that the interior blended into one with the nature in the garden. The villa is also interesting due to the construction: the house is made of a steel frame and the ceilings are supported by not walls but steel X-shaped pillars, which are covered by chromium-plated steel sheets in exposed places. The interior of the building is equipped by elegant and sensitively designed furniture from the architect Mies van der Rohe.

In August 1995, the Tugendhat Villa became a National Cultural Monument. In December 2001, it became the UNESCO World Heritage Site. From 2010, it is closed to the public for preservation reconstruction. It is planned that the monument will be reopened in January 2012.

The fate of this elegant villa inspired Simon Mawer to write the novel The Glass Room (2009).

Lednice-Valtice Cultural Landscape

The Lednice-Valtice Cultural Landscape is situated between the towns of Lednice and Valtice in southern Bohemia, near the borders with Austria. Over centuries, the Liechtenstein Family created a jewel of landscape architecture, which is considered the largest artificially-made landscape area in Europe. Apart from the castles in Lednice and Valtice, there are many smaller buildings built in the Romantic Style in the area that was landscaped in the style of English parks, such as the Apollo Temple, John’s Castle, Belvedere Castle, the Colonnade, the Obelisk, the Temple of Diana also called the Rendezvous, the Temple of Three Graces in the Empire style, the Minaret or a greenhouse. In 1992, the whole area of Lednice-Valtice became a Landscape Monument Zone. In December 1996 it was inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List.

The most popular parts of the complex are the Lednice and Valtice castles. They are connected by a more than 6-km long linden and chestnut alley from 1715. The alley was named after the poet Petr Bezruč, who often visited Valtice and praised the beauty of this region in his poems.

The complex gained its current romantic and neo-gothic appearance after a major reconstruction in 1846-1858. A part of the baroque walls was preserved but the façade was supplemented with many new extensions and new elements, such as parapets, balconies, oriels, chimneys and towers. The interiors, which are a perfect example of rich woodcarving decoration, were also reconstructed in the romantic neo-gothic style. The park and the gardens are inspired by the English parks of that time.

You can find more information about the complex here.
 
 
Author: Romana Kuncová
 
Added: 13.07.2011
 
 
 

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