Chernova’s house

Mikhail Mordasov/ТАSS

This beautiful mansion has a fascinating romantic story to it. One Pyotr Paramonov, a successful local merchant, descendant of a wealthy and influential family of Rostov merchants, fell in love with an actress of a street theatre, which happened to be popular in Rostov at the time. As part of his courtship, Paramonov initiated an unheard-of display of generosity. He asked a renowned local architect, Nikolai Doroshenko, to design a house that would look nothing like any of the existing buildings in Rostov. The house was designed to Paramonov’s liking, and built in 1899. Paramonov proposed and the actress accepted, and moved into this eclectic masterpiece on Bolshaya Sadovaya, one of the main streets of Rostov-on-Don. The family would host illustrious social events for the next ten years.

Fyodor Shaliapin sang here, and Nikolai Gumilev read his poetry. The post-1917 history of the mansion was not so romantic. It began to fall apart and was pronounced unsafe by the early 2000s. Then it was restored in its erstwhile glory. The building currently houses the offices of a major commercial bank.