Cloth Hall

Krakow, Poland

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31-042 Rynek Glowny 1/3
Lesser Poland Voivodeship
The iconic glory-room in the centre of Krakow, market square, he is proof that a structure of some sort has existed on the site of the cloth Hall (Sukiennice) in the middle of the 13th century. At the origin, resembling two rows of stone trading stalls with a running track between them, a roof was erected above them, around the year 1300, before the King Kazimierz the Great approved the construction of a shopping hall in the middle of the 14th century. As a result, Krakow, the importance of east-west trade position has increased, but the name of the "Sukiennice" refers specifically to the trade of textiles and fabrics, Krakow's Cloth Hall saw an array of products that are purchased and sold in its merchant stalls including wax, spices, leather and silk, as well as lead and salt from the nearby Wieliczka mines.

After a fire destroyed the building in the middle of the 16th century, the Sukiennice underwent a facelift of the Renaissance overseen by Jan Maria Padovano (1493-1574) featuring brilliantly deformed gargoyles by the Italian-Polish sculptor Santi Gucci in the front. At this time, the cloth Hall is probably the most beautiful building in all of Krakow. By the mid-1870s, however, Poland had been partitioned for nearly a century and the cloth Hall is rather a state of decrepitude. Between 1875-79, when the city was part of the Austro-Hungarian-controlled Galician, many of the buildings were demolished and the neo-Gothic colonnades and outside arcades were added by Tomasz Prylinski, a student of Jan Matejko. The interior has been converted into a series of wooden stalls and on October 7, 1879, the City of Krakow, the Board voted to give half of the upper floor of the Hall to the creation of the first Polish National Museum. It quickly became the focal point for the great feast of patriotism poles attract Poles from all three partitions, as well as those of the self-imposed exile abroad.

The 20th century has seen the continuous development of the construction of the most important work conducted in the late 1950s, when the major part of the 19th century, the interior has been replaced. In the early 21st century, however, the building, in particular the display areas to the interior, was in a poor state and ill-prepared for the needs of a 21st century museum or the shopping area. As of August 2006, and a duration of more than 4 years, the building was given a complete overhaul with lifts, air conditioning and new natural and artificial lighting installed. Where once were sloped roofs, you will find lovely terraces, one of which is occupied by the Cafe Szal - overlooking the square below and st. Mary's Basilica opposite. In the spring and summer, you can enjoy them through the entrance of the 19th Century, Polish Art Gallery. After visiting the Art Gallery or the Rynek Underground museum take a break by visiting the Noworolski Cafe for coffee and round it off by picking up a souvenir in the arcade within the cloth Hall, where you'll find all sorts of handicrafts, amber and other local products at surprisingly reasonable prices. And you will have the experience of shopping in what is essentially a 700-year old to the mall.


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