The Radisson Royal Hotel is a five-star luxury hotel which still maintains its historic name of Hotel Ukraina. Hotel Ukraina was commissioned by Joseph Stalin. It was designed by Arkady Mordvinov and Vyacheslav Oltarzhevsky (leading Soviet expert on steel-framed highrise construction), and is the second tallest of the neoclassical Stalin-era 'seven sisters' (198 m, with 34 stories). It was the tallest hotel in the world from the time of its construction until the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel opened in Atlanta, Georgia, United States in 1976. Construction on the low river bank meant that the builders had to dig well below the water level. This was enabled by an ingenious water retention system, using a perimeter of needle pumps driven deep into the ground.
The hotel opened on May 25, 1957. It closed in 2007 for a complete renovation and restoration. In 2009, the owners signed a contract with the Rezidor Hotel Group to manage the hotel as the Radisson Royal Hotel, Moscow. The hotel maintains its original name, however, for some purposes.
The hotel reopened on April 28, 2010 after its 3-year-renovation. The façade was restored in detail, while modern technology has been added, including multi-level water cleaning systems and air circulation systems.
There are also about 1,200 original paintings by the most prominent Russian artists of the first half of the 20th century, and on the first floor the diorama Moscow – Capital of the USSR in 1:75 scale shows the historical centre of Moscow and the city’s surroundings from Luzjniki to Zemlyanoi Val in the year 1977, when the artwork was created.References:
The eight towns in south-eastern Sicily, including Ragusa, were all rebuilt after 1693 on or beside towns existing at the time of the earthquake which took place in that year. They represent a considerable collective undertaking, successfully carried out at a high level of architectural and artistic achievement. Keeping within the late Baroque style of the day, they also depict distinctive innovations in town planning and urban building. Together with seven other cities in the Val di Noto, it is part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In 1693 Ragusa was devastated by a huge earthquake, which killed some 5,000 inhabitants. Following this catastrophe the city was largely rebuilt, and many Baroque buildings from this time remain in the city. Most of the population moved to a new settlement in the former district of Patro, calling this new municipality 'Ragusa Superiore' (Upper Ragusa) and the ancient city 'Ragusa Inferiore' (Lower Ragusa). The two cities remained separated until 1926, when they were fused together to become a provincial capital in 1927.