The historic restroom in GUM's basement was reopened in 2012, following protracted restoration. It looks much too chic for a restroom, rather resembling a room in some nobleman's mansion. The Bolsheviks closed the restroom after the 1917 Revolution. Perhaps they considered such luxury excessive. They say that the GUM was the first shop in the history of Soviet retail to introduce a book of complaints and suggestions, but there exists no conclusive historical evidence to prove it.
Muscovites go to the GUM to have a good time, not just to shop. There are a few cafés and a cinema on the third floor. It is customary to eat the delicious ice cream, sold in the GUM, by the fountain in the middle of the shop. It is also customary to schedule dates by the fountain.
The classical ice cream, which is familiar to any Muscovite from early age, can be definitely found in GUM. The sales of this ice cream started on July 3, 1954. In the basement of the store a special ice cream workshop was opened. In the beginning, only plombir (rich ice cream) and crème brûlée were prepared there, later on some other kinds of ice cream were introduced. The workshop is still operating, people who work there thoroughly keep the recipes and the production secrets of the ice cream in waffle cups.
Some time ago in GUM there were elegant saleswomen with ice cream wagons, where you could see a lot of crunchy waffle cups with traditional flavors: rich cream, crème brûlée, cream with chocolate crisps, melon. Now you can see big kiosk in GUM, where the assortment has become bigger: along with the classical flavors you can find cherry, pistachio, and Eskimo ice cream in foil paper. There is a big line in front of the kiosks even during wintertime.
- Red Square, 3
- st. Teatralnaya, Okhotny Riad, Ploschad Revolyutsii
- free admission
- 7 (495) 788 43 43