Livadia (“Meadow”) is a settlement 6 kilometers far from Yalta. The main sight in the settlement is the Livadia Palace. It is the former summer residence of the Russian tsar. The paiace was built by the architect Nickolai Krasnov in 1911, and for his work Nickolai Krasnov was given the title of Academician in Architecture.
Renaissance motifs and elements of other styles can be found in the architectural design. An example of it is a church, which adjoins the west facade. A rebuilt catholic chapel with its altar facing not the east like in all Russian churches, but the south, has a beautiful Byzantine mosaic. The Urals masters made forged metal gates to the Italian patio, lanterns hanging from the arches were brought from Florence.
The patio is surrounded by the arcade. Between the arches are carvings of dolphins, vases, grapes and cornucopias. In its centre there is a white marble fountain.
Arabic script covers a grey marble column standing near the belfry. The inscription was made in honour of the Sultan who went on a journey to the lower Danube. Not far from the column is a fountain — a copy of the Bakhchisarai palace fountain.
The Livadia palace is famous for its historical memorial complex devoted to the 1945 Yalta conference. The heads of the governments of three allied powers of the USSR, the US, and the United Kingdom gathered in conference. They coordinated their war plans for the final defeat of fascist Germany and their policy concerning the post-war world. The participants adopted a «Declaration on Liberated Europe» and agreed to convene a United Nations Conference in April 1945. The copies of the documents of the Yalta conference are now on the display in the White Hall of the palace.
In the palace’s interior decoration different materials were used: marble, mosaics, majolica, wood, metal.
Marble was used in the finishings of the White Hall, where the sessions of the Yalta conference were held. The ceiling is decorated with a gorgeous moulding representing antique themes.
The big reception hall is reminiscent of the hall of the council of the Five Hundred in the Doges’ Palace in Venice, Italy. The vestibule has been modeled in ancient Roman architecture style. The billiard room with its chestnut paneling reminds us a 16th century English castle. In all there are 116 rooms including the balconies and passageways.
Now the Livadia palace is also used as an exhibition hall Paintings by the artists of the 19-20th centuries are on display in the palace’s exhibitions.
In 1917 the palace ensemble was nationalized. In 1925 the Livadia Peasant Resort was opened here. Six years later it was reorganized into a clinic sanatorium.
Now the Livadia sanatorium is one of the most important ones on the Southern Coast: It specializes in the treatment of heart ailments.
There is a vast park spreading from the palace to the very edge of the sea.