Famous Buildings

Walking round St. Petersburg, its impossible not to wonder at the sheer wealth and variety of architecture created in only 300 years. In contrast to the drab tower blocks of the outskirts, almost none of the buildings in the historical centre can be described as utilitarian, and generation after generation of architectural fashion, starting from Petrine baroque and leading through rococo and high neoclassicism to the riotous eclecticism of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, is given full untrammeled expression in St. Petersburg's numerous remarkable public buildings, which range in function from riding schools to railway stations, from government offices to upmarket stores.