06 Dec, 2019

Beginnings

A semi-detached villa at Langiewicza Street No 19/21 was designed by architect Marian Kontkiewicz, who had designed various buildings in Warsaw, for instance the House of Wedinger at Śniadeckich Street No 23, the palace at Mokotowska Street No 62, and the villa of the first president of Poland, Gabriel Narutowicz, at Parkowa Street. Kontkiewicz was known for his passion for architecture, and is harkening back to historical forms.

Projekt Willi przy ul.Langiewicza 19/21

The construction of the villa started in 1922 and continued until 1924. The form of the house evoked a classic Polish manor house with two columns at the entrance holding a tympanum and with a sloping tile roof.

Some sources refer to this house as "Little Belvedere".

For example, the famous Warsaw historian, Jerzy Kasprzycki, in his "Farewell to Warsaw", published on 8 May 1967 in the daily newspaper “Życie Warszawy”, used the term "Little Belvedere", writing: "Among many other interesting villas and cottages built between the two World Wars at Kolonia Staszica, these two are probably the most luxurious. They are two because, in spite of their common elevation, with shades of the government palace Belvedere, these are two separate buildings, marked with their own plot numbers... "

However, in her book "Ochota before the war - the most beautiful photographs" published in 2010, Joanna Rolińska states that "Little Belvedere" was the name of villa No 15/17 at Langiewicza Street, which was the home of the former President of the Republic of Poland, Stanisław Wojciechowski.

The Cultural Heritage Inspector in Warsaw used the term “Little Belvedere” in the grounds of his decision to enter villa No 19/21 into the list of buildings of historical heritage in Warsaw.

I do not know whether this house took this name before the war, but given the architectural design of the building, it is clear that this name fits perfectly. It is the only building of its kind in Kolonia Staszica, and one of the few in the whole of Warsaw.

It is also highly likely that the name "Little Belvedere" might have come from the involvement of the original owner of the building on the side of Józef Piłsudski – a hero of the Polish Nation, who lived in "Grand Belvedere" – the original presidential palace in Warsaw near Łazienki Park...

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