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Photographer's Note

The most popular place in Crimea - Swallow's Nest. So why shouldn't I post the photo from there even if it is a classic composition. In the late evening light it looked quite scary.

Swallow's Nest is a decorative castle near Yalta on the Crimean shore in southern Ukraine. It was built between 1911 and 1912 near Gaspra, on top of 40-metre high Aurora Cliff, to a Neo-Gothic design by the Russian architect Leonid Sherwood. The castle overlooks Ai–Todor cape of the Black Sea and is located near the remnants of the Roman castrum of Charax.
The first building on the Aurora Cliff was constructed for a Russian general circa 1895.The first structure he built was a wooden cottage romantically named the "Love Castle
In 1911, Baron von Steingel, a Baltic German noble who had made a fortune extracting oil in Baku, acquired the timber cottage and within a year had it replaced by the current building. The Scottish baronial and Neo-Moorish styles had been introduced in the Crimea in the 1820s by Edward Blore, the architect of the Alupka Palace (1828-46). Swallow's Nest is closer in style to German architectural follies, such as Neuschwanstein, and Stolzenfels, although its precarious setting on the cliffs by the sea-side may also suggest the Belém Tower.

In 1914, von Steinheil sold the building to P. G. Shelaputin to be used as a restaurant In 1927, Swallow's Nest survived a serious earthquake rated at 6 to 7 on the Richter scale. For a long time, Swallow's Nest was closed to the public due to the damage it suffered in that quake. The building would remain closed for the next forty years.


Since 1975, an Italian restaurant has operated within the building. Swallow's Nest was also featured in several Soviet films. It was used as the setting of Desyat Negrityat, the Soviet screen version of Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None. The Swallow's Nest Castle and the surrounding landmarks such as the Massandra palace were also shortly featured in a Jackie Chan film.

The building is compact in size (20 m long by 10 m wide; 65 ft by 33 ft).An observation deck rings the building, providing a view of the sea, and Yalta's distant shoreline.

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Additional Photos by Malgorzata Kopczynska (emka) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4997 W: 81 N: 12674] (74187)
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