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The section of the Moskva River Embankment from the Great Stone Bridge to the Peter the Great Statue is called Bersenevskaya Embankment. Take a walk along the waterfront here and you pass former factory buildings converted to new uses as cafes, art-galleries, bookshops, and intriguing little alleys with constantly-opening new attractions.
There are two rival theories why the waterfront here is named Bersenevskaya Embankment. One goes that not far from here – in what were once the Royal Orchards, beyond where the bridge is now, there were gooseberry bushes. Gooseberries are officially called kryzhovnik in Russian, but in the C17th they were also called Bersen. The other version is related to a C16th official of Ivan the Terrible's, who invented a kind of barbed wire 'for securing property from wicked people'. Allegedly Count Bersen-Beklemishev's fencing was installed along the embankment here – and thus the name.
In the C18th the river embankments at Bersenevskaya were bolstered and it became a fully-fledged street for carriage traffic. Before the granite waterfront was put here in the 1930s it had been a sloping waterfront with grass and shrubs, and a path leading down to the water. Kids used to go swimming here, and laundresses brought linen to wash. In winter they used to hack ice-blocks here, to keep in icehouses for refrigerated storage year-round. These days Bersenevskaya Embankment is a promenade area once more, and people like to ride here on roller-skates and bikes. It makes a nice route from Patriarch's Bridge past the medieval chambers, the electric tram power station, the bizarre House On The Embankment and finally to the Water Overflow Canal. From there you can easily reach “Polyanka” Metro Station. Alternatively you can climb the stairways of the Great Stone Bridge and make your way towards the Kremlin.
The area around Bersenevskaya Embankment – where the River Spit of the island meets the former “Red October” Chocolate Factory – is a magnet for those interested in new things. It's a real cultural cluster. Here you can find the Art-Strelka Institute which offers meetings, discussions, and debates about art and art history almost daily. There are concerts, there are new hostels here, clubs and cafes. The area has also spawned a number of art and crafts workshops.
The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour is a cathedral on the northern bank of the Moskva River, a few blocks southwest of the Kremlin. With an overall height of 103 metres it is the tallest Orthodox Christian church in the world.
The current church is the second to stand on this site. The original church, built during the 19th century, took more than 40 years to build. It was destroyed in 1931 during the Communist rule of Joseph Stalin. The demolition was supposed to make way for a colossal Palace of the Soviets that was never built, so the church was reconstructed in the 1990s on the same site.
The Cathedral is located on Volkhonka Street, which starts from Borovitskaya Square. The name of the street appeared at the end of the XVIII century when on the lands of the Volkonskis, a famous noble family was a popular tavern "Volkhonka". The street is one of the most ancient in Moscow. It was famous as a district for the rich.
This district is going to become Moscow Museum District. During the tour you will see and have the opportunity to visit a number of art museums: The Tsvetkovsky Gallery, The Ilya Glazunov Art Gallery, The Lopukhin Family Mansion (aka the Roerich Museum), Gallery of European and American Art of the C19th and C20th, The Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, The Museum of Private Collections. While walking here you will understand why Moscow used to be accepted as a beautiful jewelry box. In the lanes you will discover old mansions and fall in love with stories of Russian noble families. Such are The Golitsyn Mansion, The Lopukhin Family Mansion, Obolonsky's Mansion, Sergey Tretyakov's Mansion etc. The Chambers of Averky Kirillov - a unique example of a large urban homestead. Chambers, Church of St. Nicholas and outbuildings along the waterfront are a single architectural complex.
Another bright example of Moscow architecture is Pertsova's Rental Apartment Mansions. The house was an apartment house, located on the corner of Soymonovsky passage and Prechistenskaya embankment, built in 1905-1907 by architects N. Zhukov and B.N. Shnaubert on sketches of the artist S.V. Malyutin, author of Russian nesting dolls. The house includes apartments and artists' studios in the upper attic of the building.