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The Sofia Public Mineral Baths

The current Central Mineral Baths building was designed in the Vienna Secession style, but integrating typically Bulgarian, Byzantine and Eastern Orthodox ornamental elements, by the architects Petko Momchilov and Friedrich Grünanger in 1904–1905 and approved on 30 January 1906, as projects by an Austrian (in 1889) and a French architect (in 1901) were declined. The raw construction was finished in 1908 and a Bulgarian company constructed the complex roof and the mineral water conduit. The baths opened on 13 May 1913, but the building was completely finished after 2 more years and a garden was arranged in front of the baths. Artists Haralampi Tachev and St. Dimitrov designed the building's ceramic majolica decoration

The north wing was damaged during the bombing of Sofia in World War II, but was restored several years later. The baths continued to work as public baths until 1986, when the building was closed due to its bad condition and the possible collapse of the roof. It was subsequently partially reconstructed and thoroughly cleaned and accommodates the Sofia Regional Historical Museum since September 2015.

The Regional History Museum tells the millennia old history of the Bulgarian capital, one of the oldest cities in Europe. The museum's permanent exhibition is located in the former Central Mineral Bath building. The Regional History Museum - Sofiа also has several branches: the underground museum at "St. Sophia" basilica, the Tomb of Knyaz Alexander I Battenberg, the National Reconciliation Exposition (garrison shooting range), the Western gate of Serdica, The Triangular Tower of Serdica and others.

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Additional Photos by Piotr Fagasiewicz (PiotrF) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 4259 W: 2 N: 7334] (35722)
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