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The Minerva Hotel, CraiovaCod 1328

This building was built between the years 1898 and 1903 according to the plans of the architects Thoma Dobrescu and D. Nedelcu. The building was built on the field which was back then the property of the trusteeship Church Madona Dudu from Craiova (Gh. Anghelescu and A. Carianopol) and the architect Th. Dobrescu from Bucharest “for executing the plans of the reconstruction of a new place in the City Orșova in the place of the demolished one called the Casino Minerva whose cost mustn’t pass, as far as possible the amount of 500 million RON”. The building was going to have a store, a confectionery and a coffee shop and in the basements and in the undergrounds there will be arrangements fro the laboratories of the Confectionery. In the principal body of the building there was going to be arranged a Club and rooms for the hotel. The majestic building will gather important names of the times which had passed, becoming the symbol of the ancient Craiova, but also a real altar of the culture at which there surrendered the artists of great value of some ancient times.

From the scene from Minerva there started on their path crowned by success Madelaine and Many Nedeianu, Iordănescu, Bruno, Ion Vasilescu, Mia Braia, Ioana Radu, Dorina Drăghici, Petre Alexandru and many, many more. Also, here there were born ideas, there were shaped plans, there were debated the plans of the art of the period. Here there could be seen Amza Pellea, Gheorghe Cozorici, Constantin Rauţchi, Silvia Popovici, Sanda Toma, Ioana Bulcă, Andreea Năstăsescu, Rodica Tăpălagă, Ioana Măgură, Vasile Constantinescu, Vasile Niţulescu, Remus Comănescu, Geo Barton, George Mărutză or Costel Rădulescu and others. Minerva also hosted other important people of the world: General Charles De Gaule, Ciu En Lai or Nikita Hrușciov.

The architectonic style is one which is less met here, inspired by the Arabian / Moorish architecture. There are specific to this style the voids between the doors or the closed doors at the superior part with a bigger arch than 180 degrees, the closed voids in the arch of 180 degrees and multi-lobed, as well as the polychromatic geometric decoration.

In the past there existed at the ground floor business, at the floor, grand and elegant saloons, where they used to play cards and pool, here not being to enter anyone, the luxury and, especially, the process not being for anyone, therefore, the most frequent characters who came here were within the aristocrats from Craiova.

The architect Toma Dobrescu, is part of the first generation of Romanian architects formed from the School of Beaux – Arts from Paris. He fight together with the other Romanian architects against the foreign architects who were founding offices in Romania and “taking over the works”. He was one of the most prolific constructors from the beginning of the XXth century. He built in Bucharest, but also at other localities from the country. His works were executed in an eclectic style, of the French academicism, and comprise a great variety of architecture programs: public buildings, private residences, churches.


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