Stamboli's Villa: history and architecture

Дача стамболи - вид с дороги1Feodosian embankment from the modern Galereynaya Street to the “Ai-Petri” hotel had a completely different look. It was a series of expensive, luxury villas designed by the best architects of the period and held by the rich, important people, for example, such as famous painter I. Aivazovsky or Moscow publisher A. Suvorin.

In the same row, Joseph Stamboli, the youngest son of Benjamin Stamboli, the tobacco manufacturer, who founded in 1861 Feodosia tobacco factory, decided to build a house for himself.

Joseph Stamboli developed father's tobacco business to the level of world-class brand. Feodosia factory got number 1 in the Russian Empire, where all tobacco factories had a serial numbers. The factory produced a high-quality tobacco and cigarettes of prestigious brands. Tobacco plantations were in the Crimea, the Northern Caucasus, Bulgaria, Turkey. There are cases when the tobacco was imported from China and Japan. The factory's products were exported to Europe and Asia and had gained a well-deserved popularity. Preserved advertisements from that time called “the gentlemen come to know the smoking of southern tobacco scented properties of which are known to the whole world”. Twice factory received the gold medals at prestigious exhibitions in Paris. Family Stamboli earned on the sale of cigarettes huge money. Assets of the company were 26 million rubles in terms of only tobacco plantations in 1916. Stamboli was one of the richest people in the Russian imperia.
Вид со двора

In 1909, Joseph Stamboli decided to marry and build a new house for his future family. It should be noted that once there was a stereotype of the. For Stamboli it was a house for the family, not only the villa. The wedding took place in 1911.

As a rich man, Stamboli decided to approach the matter in a big way. He has invested in the construction of huge at the time the financial resources - 1 million 100 thousand golden rubles. Usually, as a comparison result the cost of lunch in an exclusive restaurant - 90 kopecks, to stay in a luxurious hotel - 1 ruble per day, or cost of a horse - 15 thousand horses or 19 thousand cows. The house belonging to Russian publishers Alexey Suvorin located on the site of the modern hotel “Ai-Petri” in the early 20th century. Too large house built in the form of a castle. This home cost 70 thousand rubles. The most expensive building in Feodosia at that time was the villa “Victoria”, owned by businessman Samuel Crimea. His house was worth 200 thousand rubles. Thus, at the time of construction of the house of Joseph Stamboli became the most expensive building not only of Feodosia, but in Crimea in general, except the palaces belonging to the royal family.

Oscar Wegener became the designer of the building. He was a famous St. Petersburg architect ant the founder of northern modernist, which was successfully entered in the Crimean landscape. Wegener has designed this building in the tradition of the architecture school at the time. Modern architects design buildings mainly “on the budget and on the landscape”. That time the architects took into account a huge amount of factors. They designed the building, taking into account the binding to the terrain, the climate, the cardinal, nature, land, landscape, folk traditions of the region and, most importantly, the identity and nationality of the customer. Joseph Stamboli was Karaime nationality. Therefore Wegener designed the building in the most appropriate in this case style - Moorish.

There was used all aspects of modernism, so popular in the late XIX - early XX centuries. One composition may also include the Moorish style, the Gothic, and others. But their merger they give absolute architectural harmony. Building is asymmetrically. All the architectural elements are not repeated. Variety of motifs and textures in the decoration, all kinds of turrets, cloisters and terraces gives it oriental flavor and majesty. This building is in harmony from the architectural point of view.

Вид с улицыStamboli invited the top experts and builders of that time, all the materials for the construction of houses were imported from abroad. Thus, a fusion of big capital, architectural talent and execution gave the result. Building immediately, since it was built, became the hallmark of Feodosia, one of the symbols of the Crimea.

Construction quality was so high that, despite the more than impressive age of this building - 100 years, almost all elements of decor are the originals.

Fountain at the entrance really was in that place initially, but the fountain, unfortunately, has not been preserved, and in it’s placed now by the copy.

Porch - the original, except for the steps, which were originally made of white Italian marble. They have been replaced by Turkish tiles in the 1990-ies.

Entering visor and unique marble panels were made by the Feodosian master Fock Jani and considered one of the masterpieces of European carving marble.

Parquet, fireplace, doors, stairs and rails for stairs in the lobby - the original. They were made in Nouveau style. This manifests itself in a variety of styles applied in this interior. In general, the style in which the interior is made - Moorish, but doors and fireplace - Gothic, another details - ampire and rails for stairs - Old Russian ligature (combination of different plants, birds). Tobacco leaf was used as the main plant. This is due to the personality of the customer - the tobacco manufacturer. Fencing stairs was made without a single weld (while welding was not yet invented).

In the history of this palace reflected whole Feodosia story of the 20th century.

Stamboli lived in the house short time - only two years since it was built. In 1916, he was anticipating the approaching revolution, sold nearly all property - tobacco plantations, factory and their homes, accept this one. In 1918 he emigrated to Turkey, then to Germany and then to France, where at age 81 he was died. 

Building was nationalized in 1920 and most of the time in the twentieth century was used as a sanatorium: sanatorium named T. Fin, Lenin, sanatorium № 5 named Joseph Stalin, the ninth case of sanatorium “Voskhod”. During World War II the building was used as a hospital, first for Soviet soldiers, then for the Germans. Those German soldiers who died were buried in the cemetery, which placed on modern Park of the Hotel “Alye Parusa”. At the end of the Soviet period, the building was used as a substance abuse clinic of famous Soviet psychiatrist Alexander Dovzhenko.

However, the building itself has a quite happy destiny. During the war, a great view of the Feodosia waterfront has changed dramatically. As a result of intense fighting most of the buildings were destroyed. But Stamboli's Villa generally not affected.