This is a set of three interconnecting rooms in my apartment / guesthouse The Academy Garden.
The first room is the apartment’s original drawing room, a handsome space which retains the original quietly ornate ceiling mouldings. Off to the right of it is a small additional space with bookshelves, a useful antique desk, and a sofa – a quiet corner for relaxation or cozy conversations. Off to the left of the main room, through the original double doors, is a small bedroom with a double bed, interesting parquet floor, and a door leading out onto the balcony – the ideal spot in which to take coffee in the morning sun. The six arched windows in this set of rooms look out onto the garden of the Academy of Arts, a scene of never ceasing variety - a dense wall of greenery in the summer and in the winter an expanse of open white space inscribed with an intricate tracery of branches and the Classical lines of the Academy buildings.
The 'balcony rooms' have the (more or less exclusive) use of a small bathroom (shower, no tub) just across the hallway.
Location: our 230 square metre apartment is directly opposite the garden of the Academy of Arts. The Hermitage, St Isaac's, and the Mariinsky Theatre are all 15-20 minutes' walk away; the Menshikov Palace is only 5. Nearest metro station: 6 minutes. Turn right out of our front door, walk 150 metres, and you find yourself on the bank of the main river, with all of the centre of St Petersburg spread before you. Opposite and a little to the left are St Isaac’s and the statue of the Bronze Horseman. Beside you are the twin sphinxes crouching solemnly on the embankment in front of the Academy of Arts. This is an ideal spot from which to watch the raising of the bridges on summer nights.
Kitchen / dining room: the apartment has a fully equipped kitchen adjoining a large dining room.
Rates: The nightly rate for these rooms varies depending on time of year and number of occupants, and includes breakfast, unlimited tea and coffee, and some help (where required) with getting to know St Petersburg. Discounts are available for artists, academics, and anyone with a good case to make.
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I'm English, but I've more or less got over it (lived in Russia for the best part of 20 years, now live in Berlin for most of the time). I'm a translator by trade; I'm also a builder, architect, furniture-restorer, cook. For my unconventional take on St Petersburg, see