Mezhyhirya Residence

Kyiv, Ukraine

The Mezhyhirya Residence is an estate in Ukraine where Viktor Yanukovych lived when he was Prime Minister and then President of Ukraine and is now a museum displaying Yanukovych's luxurious lifestyle. Yanukovych lived in the estate from 2002, when he first became Prime Minister, to 21 February 2014, when he fled the country during the Revolution of Dignity.

The estate was founded as a monastery that functioned off-and-on until closed in 1923 by the Bolsheviks following the establishment of the Soviet Union. From 1935 Mezhyhirya was a state government residence, first under the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and then under an independent Ukraine, until 2007 when it was privatized in the final weeks of Yanukovych’s leadership as Prime Minister. This privatization has been alleged as having been illegal, with no money being reported as being paid to the state for its sale. In 2012, the State Administration of Affairs rented a space from Tantalit, arranging it for official receptions. In 2014, it returned to state ownership.

The estate is over 140 ha and is situated on the banks of the Dnieper river. There is a yacht pier, an equestrian club, a shooting range, a tennis court and other recreational facilities as well as hunting grounds. The estate also has an automobile museum displaying some of Yanukovych’s former exotic cars, a golf course, an ostrich farm, a dog kennel, numerous fountains and man-made lakes, a helicopter pad, and a small church. The entire complex is enclosed by a five-meter tall fence along the perimeter.

During Yanukovych’s presidency, the estate became a controversial symbol of the increasingly authoritarian nature of his rule, as well as a symbol of the excess and corruption that defined his government and Ukrainian bureaucracy. Details of the residence’s excesses, such as the cost of its chandeliers, shocked and angered Ukrainians during Yanukovych’s presidency, with many rumours about the complex circulating throughout Ukraine in the early 2010s. During Euromaidan in 2013-2014, protesters descended on the complex, especially in December 2013, to protest against Yanukovych’s government. Protests at Mezhyhirya were also motivated by the belief held by the protestors that the complex was funded “improperly”, and also by an attack on 25 December 2013 on the journalist Tetiana Chornovol, who had been investigating the financing of the Mezhyhirya residence, and was attacked after unknown men in a jeep crashed into her car. The social movement Automaidan would organise many of the protests at Mezhyhirya, which would result in many of the movement’s vehicles being recorded by the police on a list. Many cars from the list would be burned, and owners of others would lose their driver’s licenses.

The controversial nature of the complex has persisted since Yanukovych’s ousting, with some Ukrainians refusing to visit it because it is connected to the former president of Ukraine and provokes negative emotions, though others have used it for their wedding photoshoots.

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Kyiv, Ukraine
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Details

Founded: 1935
Category: Palaces, manors and town halls in Ukraine

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Manal ibooks (3 years ago)
A place of heaven! I really enjoy every time spent here! Very recommended for you & the family to see diff kinds of animals and enjoy feeding them.
Anastasiia Vlasenko (3 years ago)
Amazing place to spend all day ! Even with friends ,even with family ! So huge territory of the park,there is also the scoter and bike rent (if you don’t want to walk so far ) You can visit the zoo and also buy fresh made milk and organic vegetables . The entrance costs 5 euro ,which is not really expensive . The only problem there - PARKING But this is a problem all over ukraine !
Andreas Sturm (3 years ago)
After 60 minutes of Uber ride you get to this former president mention. They put effort in keeping the garden and flowers neat and clean. I can recommend the golf car ride, if you want to avoid walking through the whole park. The driver know his text and gives some nice information about the property. Although, if you try to start a conversation, the language skills are limited. Same is valid for theses so call walking tours, offered for different houses on the property. We opted for the sauna as 500 for the big house, seemed quite expensive. The guide is really willing to deliver some interesting information, but conversation is quite difficult. And organisation, just call the number, they will tell you.
Ірина Біляєва (3 years ago)
Nice park, nice views. There are a lot of places to chill and relax. Entrance price 150 UAH (june 2021).
Захра Бабикир (3 years ago)
The place is more than wonderful..a bit of imagination..i enjoyed my time a lot..nature and beautiful greenery..the ukrainians are very friendly and they seem happy and welcome the tourists here..there are ducks and whales and a lake with some fish and a big golf course at the end of the road The place is big and you can spend about 5 hours here.
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