New Holland (Russian: “Novaya Gollandiya”) is one of the most unusual landmarks of St Petersburg. It is actually an artificially created island, which appearance relates to the history of the Admiralty. The island is situated between the Moyka River, the Admiralty Canal and the Kryukov Canal.
During the period of creating St Petersburg, Peter the Great invited many Dutch shipbuilders who worked on the left coast of the Neva River. The atmosphere reminded the international port, and that area started to be called Holland. Later this title stuck to the island.
It was initially created in 1719 with the building of two canals. But officially the island was formed by the 30th years of 18th century. The first wooden constructions were built by Ivan Korobov. In the mid of the century it was decided to replace the wooden buildings with stone ones.
The architect Savva Chevakinskiy developed innovating constructions for vertical storage of woods, so he drew the island in the severe fortress-like style. At the same time, another architect – Jean-Baptiste Vallen de la Mothe had to decorate the facades of New Holland. He suggested having a famous nowadays classical arch for linking the canals to the internal part of the island. The 23 meters high and 8 meters wide arch was constructed in nine years. Both projects were compiled and realized by the engineer Johann Gerhard.
In the 30th years of 19th century, the round building of the Naval Prison was built on the island. In 1894, a new construction appeared on the island. Actually it was a testing pool where the Russian shipbuilder Krylov A.N. worked on the theory of unsinkable ships.
Interestingly during World War I, the Naval Headquarters Radio Station was installed there, and that is where from the Bolsheviks announced their seizure of power in 1917. In the Soviet times, New Holland was a closed zone and the place of storage for the Leningrad naval base.
The area of New Holland with construction complexes was organized by the leading architects of different epochs, and that’s what makes it a true masterpiece of the early Russian classical architecture.
Not long ago the island moved under city authority governance, so the reconstruction works took place to make the New Holland a multi-functional center. Nowadays you can find her many interesting exhibitions and events, workshops and shows, cafes and restaurants that serve international meals and drinks.
It’s an environment for rest, entertainment, self-development and pleasure. Additional plus, you are surrounded by beautiful architecture there. There are well organized tree alleys and a herbs garden, a playground for kids and a wooden installation of a ship. Instead of sitting on a bench, you can rest on a chair somewhere on a grass – chairs are easy to move and arrange if you have a big group of friends.
New Holland these days is a combination of history and modern design solutions. So it’s definitely worth visiting in St Petersburg. Contact me if you want to have it as a part of a guided tour.
Information About the Excursion
|09:00 am - 10:00 pm|
|09:00 am - 11:00 pm|
|Admiralteyskiy Canal Embankment 2|
|Metro / Subway|
|3, 6, 22, 27, 70, 71, 100|
|Pochtamtskiy Pereulok||5, 22|
|Ploshchad' Truda - Central Naval Museum||K-124, K-169, K-306, K-350, K-62, K-6K|