When an architect builds his own house, he inevitably comes across the problem of revealing and exposing his own taste, bringing into the public domain his own architectural precepts.
And it so happened that at that point in time the architect’s attention is turned to the northern part of Italy, to Vicenza, to Padua. So the choice of a Palladian style was felt to be the most natural alternative. Following the precedent created by thousands of previous architects it was only too easy to conceal our own predilections.
The plan of the building is based on the classical Palladian style with a strong central axis along which the entrance is positioned.

Two symmetrically located spiral staircases lead to the private first floor, dividing it into two separate areas.

The building’s facades are plastered in the traditional manner and style  and have only the very minimum of stucco décor.


Reminiscences of Palladio. Private House. Saint-Petersburg. 2003

The floor surfaces on the ground floor are made using the ancient Italian technique of ‘Terrazzo Veneziano’.

In contrast to the lounge which is decorated with a classical architrave and cornice, the dining room space is decorated in neutral black and not defined stylistically at all. Family photographs can easily co-exist with reproductions of works of art and maps brought from various travels in such an environment. The fin-de-siècle plastic art on the walls reveals the architect’s personal influences.

The classical interior is fully realised in the vestibule. Frescoes covering the vestibule walls are references to works by Tiepolo glimpsed in the Villa Valmarana ai Nanni, situated a stone’s throw away from the famous villa La Rotonda by Andrea Palladio in Vicenza.

This concept of an Italian house in miniature is carried through into the design and stylistic composition of the children’s room. The harlequin wall is covered with anadems and swags of roses based on designs in the Benois book. The harlequin himself is above the entrance and there are etchings with Zanni motifs from Venice.

The circular gable window (oeil de boeuf) is the most typical element in Palladian architecture. It references the Palladian style specifically while at the same time making a practical contribution to the overall effect of the lounge.