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The Merchant House In Bucharest Old City
Property features
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  • 25 bedrooms
  • 12 bathrooms
  • Over 50 Years Old
  • Wood Frame
  • Central
  • Stall Shower and Tub
  • 1 Fireplace
  • Under 1/2 Acre
  • Cement Siding
  • Central
  • Historic / Antique
  • In-City
  • Finished
  • Stall Shower
  • QC Approved Listing
  • Courtyard
  • Gas
Property description
Located at kilometer 0 of Bucharest, near Lipscani and Calea Moșilor streets, in the former suburb of Răzvan Church, the house built in 1891 belonged to the merchant Gheorghe Petrescu (Ghiță). Its initials and year of construction are present on the frontispiece. The building with basement, ground floor and floor was designed in the eclectic style of the era, with pronounced neoclassical touches. The mixed destination is typical of the area and is inspired by the model of Manuc Inn (opened in 1808): commercial function on the ground floor, storage in the two basements (approximately 1000 sqm) and residential on the first floor and attic. The generous ballroom, with an area of approximately 100 sqm, is kept upstairs. The interior with an usable area of 1,500 sqm is divided into 12 apartments, with a high potential to become a hotel, restaurant or office space. The building benefits from a large yard of 478 sqm, where up to 10 cars can be parked. To this advantage is added the downtown position, just 300 meters from the University subway.The basement was specially designed and built to maintain a constant temperature throughout the year, functioning originally as a warehouse of selected wines from Valea Călugărească, sold in the store. Thevery tough walls have a thickness of approximately 2.7 meters, being constructed of top quality burnt bricks. The arrangement of the bricks is arched in vaults, to create special niches to keep the precious wine bottles. According to the oldest tenant, Ana Cofoi, born in 1902 and moved to the building in 1937, as a caretaker, it seems that a restaurant and a wine cellar were functioning here. According to testimonies of a former Royal Guard officer, Ion Ivașcu (born in 1912), who resided here in the last years of his life, during the interwar period the first floor functioned as a reception and ballroom for diplomats, officers and military associates of the regime. In the "Proect" sketch are described the double walls of the ballroom: under calcio vecchio, the walls were painted with oil. For a short time, it seems that Princess Martha Bibescu also lived in this house - a fact unascertained by archives, but that can be confirmed due to a commemorative plate in the Church of St. George nearby, through which the Princess pays tribute to the Brâncoveanu founders and martyrs.
Between 1942-1950, the ground floor hosted: • The Ironworks of the Church of the Great Martyr George, who also served the special works of the craftsmen for the metal locks and windows of the building's doors. • The "Dorobanțul" fabrics and cloths company and its canteen. • Stores owned by: A. Vigder; B. Jakerkaner; T. Schwarz; E. Hobinescu; A. Herscovici; S. Felix. Cavafii Vechi Street is located in the continuation of the Lipscans (one of the oldest merchant areas in the Capital, first mentioned in 1589 as "Uliţa Mare"), in the vicinity of "Târgului Cucului" on Saint George Square today. “On the ground floor, the merchants had shops with large windows, where they arranged their goods as attractive as possible. Above them, most Jews set up their homes, to be as close as possible to the fabrics or jewels whose sale provided them with daily living" said Anca Ciuciu, one of the authors of the volume Stories and images from the Jewish Bucharest, for Adevărul newspaper.
Most of the streets in the historical center of Bucharest are named after the craftsmen and merchants who used to work there. "Old Cavafii" comes from the Turkish word "kavaf", which means "a craftsman who makes inferior quality footwear for ordinary people". The guild of cavafi’s disappeared at the beginning of the 19th century, as the Oriental fashion is abandoned in favor of the Western one (called "German"). Sources: Alexandru Ofrim, „Străzi vechi din Bucureștiul de azi”, Humanitas Publishing, Bucharest, 2011 Adevarul.ro Photo: Andrei Mărgulescu

5 Cavafii Vechi street, Bucharest, Bucharest, Romania
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