In the heart of Kiev, on the Independence Square, there is a famous statue of a girl holding a branch of arrow-wood, the shopping center, “Globe” with an observation platform, climbing on it you’ll get a panoramic view of the entire Maidan with its fountains, statues, benches, and people. On the right side of the observation deck there is the bridge that connects the two sides of the Institutskaya Street.

Originally, this bridge was named Institutsky. Its name comes from the events that occurred during the operation of the Institute of noble maidens (The October Palace). Then its pupils asked to build this bridge for the convenience of visiting the garden “Tivoli. Unfortunately, the leadership has not gone on concession, and this bridge was built over 100 years.

Today this bridge is one of the favourite places of Kyiv residents and guests – standing on it you can admire an interesting view of Independence Square, and going through it, you get straight to the Institute of noble maidens, which is now called the International Centre for Culture and Arts.
Going over the bridge, you’re sure to draw your attention to another interesting sight – a flower clock, located right at the foot of the former palace of October, on the mountainside.

For the first time opening of a flower clock took place in Kiev in 2009 on the eve of Independence Day, this year they were launched twice: once was timed to coincide with Victory Day, the second time – on July 27. Prior to that, on this piece of art a lot of employees of “Kievzlenstroy” had worked. Especially for them, over 80 thousand units of flowers were planted, among which there are: Coleus Lemon, the aura of green, blue petunia, tagetis lemon, red begonia, and many others.

The Flower Clock

Concerning the design, the clock that were timed to the Day of Victory were made in the form of the Order of WW II with the St. George’s ribbon, they will be highlighted, and the bridge, erected over them, allow anyone to take pictures on their background. Other clocks, which will replace the first one, the dial looks like a traditional Ukrainian embroidery. The diameter of a clock was 19.5 m, and the dial – 16,5 m. Clocks are equipped with two hands – the 7 and 4 m. It is noteworthy that the mechanism for the clock of Kiev, was donated by the German rulers of Edinburgh in 2007. Another pleasant fact is that the Ukrainian capital’s clock is the largest flower clock in the world.

This year’s a flower clock appeared in three seasonal looks, but with the advent of cold weather, some plants began to freeze. In view of this the decision to dismantle them was made. Once again you can see the clock in the spring of 2011, as soon as the snow cover melts.

See also:
1 – Sundial at Samson and in the yard of the Kyiv Mohyla Academy
2 – Sundial as a monument to chestnut

The Institute of noble maidens itself, better known ka October Palace is located on the Institutska street.

The Institutskaya Street that is located in the heart of the capital of Ukraine was not always a broad descent from the mansion on both sides. Its origin, it takes from a small country road, the first steps on which our ancestors had done for more than six centuries ago. With its name – Institutskaya (other versions Maiden) it owes the Institute of noble maidens, which was founded in Kiev in 1838.

It took about five years before the Institute has aquired a material form in the form of high, at that time, four-story building. The building, designed by architect Vikentiya Beretti, crowned the top of a picturesque hill just next to Khreschatik. In those times, to the Kiev Institute of noble maidens were taken girls from noble families, descendants of the first guild of merchants and honorary citizens and foreigners, and priests. At the time of entering it the girls were to be not less than eight years.

A Four-story building of the Institute of noble maidens was constructed in the style of Russian classicism. Semicircular rotunda adorns the building, a colonnade, a frieze-relief, as well as the image of the pelican that feeds its chicks in the nest. This symbol has its meaning – it represents kindness, the parent beginning and self-sacrifice.

Rotunda is made of eight Corinthian columns, which are connected by the balcony railing, made of cast iron. Rizalits placed in such a way that they would perform windows frame that overlook the front side of the building. Facades on the sides have a functional purpose by placing into them entarncas-exits, rear facade is made in a simplified style.

The Institute of noble maidens – October Palace- the International Centre for Culture and Arts

An interesting fact – The Institute was regularly attended by the Emperor Nicholas I during lunch. The reason for this increased attention of the imperial person was not the institute’s menu. The fact that Nicholas I, as a creative nature adored all beautiful things, that’s why his attention was attracted by a picturesque view from the windows of the dining room of the Institute. The emperor was sitting for a long time in front one of the windows and admiring the spectacular view of Old Kiev.

A Neighbour of the Institute of noble maidens was another great Ukrainian – Taras Shevchenko. In 1885, the place where the Shevchenko’s apartment was supposedly located, an engineer Fabricius, in his own design, built for himself a two-storey house. Moorish style mansion has a very original look in the heart of the capital of Ukraine.

The architectural steps give the house a unique originality. It is worth noting that the author and an owner of the mansion had a reputation in Kiev of an extraordinary and original personality. This is his idea to extend the Khreshchatyk to Truhanov island, as well as the idea of building a sewer. And the bold idea to build on the island the first skyscraper in Kiev. His ideas and projects were much ahead of time, so most of his proposals were built after his death.

Returning to the Institute it should be noted that students lived at school. Among famous pupils of the Institute is the famous opera singer N. Zabiela-Overthrown. And one of the most famous teachers was a great composer Mykola Lysenko himself.

In the compulsory program of studying subjects were included such as the art of hospitality, singing, ethics, aesthetics, culinary courses, innovations in the lives of others.

After the October Revolution of 1917, the Institute of noble maidens was closed, as a relic of the past. From 1934 to 1941 the former school building served the NKVD of the USSR. After the war the building, destroyed by numerous bombings, needed major restoration. Upon completion of the reconstruction since 1950, the October Palace was placed here. Until today the former school and repressive authority came in the form of the International Centre for Culture and Arts.

Today the International Centre for Culture and the Arts opens its doors to lovers of theatre, operettas, concerts, and folk art. Also within the centre’s activities amateur performances circle, folk dancing and singing ensembles and more are working. The October Palace also hosts conferences, congresses, seminars, competitions and other activities of national and international format.