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Close beside St.Basil's Cathedral there's a beige-coloured three-storey building, with semicircular arches at ground floor level. It's the former Central Trading Rows, and they form the north-eastern boundary of Red Square. The building's currently being; rebuilt, and lurks behind yellow-coloured hoardings.
The Central Trading Rows is a complex of buildings in the centre of Moscow, put up in the 1890s. They were once part of an even larger ensemble of Trading Rows that encompassed the Upper Trading Rows (today's GUM) and a further complex of Lower Trading Rows that once led down to the embankment, but were demolished in the 1920s. Viewed from above the Central Trading Rows are an irregular rectangle, bordered by Varvarka and Ilyinka streets, Khrustalny lane and Moskvoretsky road. Four further buildings stand in the inner courtyard!
A number of inbuilt difficulties were presented to architect Robert Klein when he began work on the project. The slope of the ground is so sharp that the building has three storeys on Ilyinka street, but four on Varvarka. Bearing in mind the location opposite St.Basil's, Klein executed the facade of this shopping arcade in a neo-Russian style, although more restrained than GUM. Before the 1917 Revolution this had been the main centre for wholesale trading. The ground floor had a traditional layout of shopfronts, while upstairs shoppers had access to the services of commercial lawyers, bankers, and delivery services.
In the Soviet era the building was commandeered by the Red Army, which quartered its Supreme Command here. From 2003 the building's ownership passed to the Ministry of Defence. The current rebuilding work is almost complete. After reopening its scheduled that the Defence Services will occupy the majority of the building. Here too there will be a museum about the Kremlin Guards, open for public visits.
Moscow is the capital of the ancient and modern Russian state. It has been playing crucial role for centuries. Here you can face all episodes of rich and gorgeous Russian history.
The city is full of historical buildings, monuments, cathedrals, museums and parks. It started many centuries ago from the Kremlin – medieval city-fortress overlooking the Moskva River. Now it is not only the government seat but open air museum. Behind the tall red brick walls palaces, cathedrals and museums are hidden. You can get there through one of the gates and walk along the streets that saw Ivan the Terrible, Boris Godunov, Peter the Great and all other Romanovs, and the Soviet leaders.
You can visit all the cathedrals on Sobornaya (Cathedral) Square, climb Ivan the Great Bell Tower, take photos of the Tzar Bell and Tzar Cannon, see state regalia, ceremonial vestments and gold and silver relics in the world-known treasury-house – the Armoury Chamber. To say more, the Kremlin and its vicinities are on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
We would like to advise you not to concentrate on the Kremlin only. Now you can get out of the Kremlin through the Spasskiye Gate and find yourself on Red Square – the main square of the country where Victory Day parades take place. In winter there is a skating rink with some kind of souvenir bazar. Red Square is famous for being the part of so called Kitai-Gorod – the second ring of fortified walls. Here you will see the beautiful fairy-tale St. Basil’s Cathedral. It is open for tourists and it’s worth visiting. Other places that pay tourists’ attention are GUM (the main center for shopaholics), Lenin’s Mausoleum, the State History Museum and the small Cathedral of the Kazan Icon of Our Lady. If you go along Nikolskaya Street, you will get to Lubyanka Square with the imposing buildings of former KGB and the biggest in Russia Children's World Department Store.
If you decide to go through the Resurrection Gate you will find yourself on Manezhnaya (Manege) Square at the entrance to the Alexander Garden. It’s a large pedestrian open space and a nice place to walk and relax near the fountains. Underground Trade Centre ”Okhotny Ryad” or “the Hunter’s Row” is a paradise for shopping. You can continue your walk towards Arbat or Tverskaya Street. There are also fine buildings to visit and to take pictures of: The Shilov Art Gallery, hotels “Moskva”, “Nationale”, Pashkov's House, The Former House of the Moscow State Duma etc.
If you decide to turn round Georgy Zhukov’s horse monument you’ll occur on Revolution Square where you can visit the Museum of Patriotic War of 1812. From there it’s very easy to get to Teatralnaya or “Theatre” Square limited by the Metropol Hotel, The Bolshoi and the Maly Theatres. In the center you will find a beautiful fountain by Vitali.
All these sites and even more you will be able to visit and explore with knowledgeable audio excursion with offline map from Your Audio Guide “Attractions around the Kremlin”. You will find Moscow very pleasant for spending holidays.