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Photographer's Note

Many visitors to Namibia (formerly, German South West Africa - Deutsch-Südwestafrika) are struck by the German influence apparent in names, food and architecture. This is seen, most particularly, in Swakopmund; an attractive coastal town. Here one can enjoy a meal of Eisbein mit Bratkartoffeln und Sauerkraut accompanied by Weissbier and follow it up with a stroll around the town centre looking at the architecture while letting the meal digest!

Swakopmund was founded two years later than Windhoek, in 1892, by Captain Curt von Francois as the main harbour of German South West Africa. Increased traffic between Germany and its colony necessitated the establishment of a port as Walvis Bay, located 33 kilometres south, was already in British possession. Swakopmund was suitable and had the advantage of the availability of fresh water.
As Swakopmund developed prefabricated buildings were replaced by more permanent structures, many of which recall the styles fashionable in the Germany of the time.

The building you see here was the first hotel in the town. Urban legend insists that it was a brothel and gambling most certainly took place here and to such an extent that the Hotel License was revoked by the Magistrate!

The ornate style of the Hohenzollern Building (1906), is neo-baroque, unique in architectural designs in Namibia. It contains Renaissance bays, gables and balconies and the ornaments were produced by Croatian builders initially drafted for the construction of the Otavi railway line.

The Atlas figure on the top of the front of the building bears the world on his shoulders, in line with Greek mythology. Other female figures pertaining to the same belief can be found elsewhere in the structure as well as ornate angels, lions and masks.

The original part of the Hohenzollern Building, Swakopmund was officially proclaimed a national monument on 15th June 1983.

You can view a large, higher quality version here

This photograph is copyright of Rosemary Walden - © Rosemary Walden 2015. All rights reserved. Any redistribution or reproduction of the image in any form is prohibited. You may not, except with my express written permission, copy, reproduce, download, distribute or exploit the content. Nor may you transmit it or store it in any other website or other form of electronic retrieval system

Photo Information
  • Copyright: Rosemary Walden (SnapRJW) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2818 W: 85 N: 6957] (31629)
  • Genre: Places
  • Medium: Color
  • Date Taken: 2015-03-01
  • Categories: Architecture
  • Exposure: f/29.0, 1/80 seconds
  • More Photo Info: view
  • Photo Version: Original Version
  • Date Submitted: 2015-03-03 7:39
Viewed: 3425
Points: 54
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