The military club

Architect: Adolf Vaclav Kolar/ Nikola Lazarov
Year: 1895-1900/1900-1907
Address: 7, Tsar Osvoboditel boulevard

Tsar Osvoboditel boulevard is the most representative urban axis and rich symbol of Sofia, but also for the whole of Bulgaria. As we walk from the Orlov Bridge to the Palace, we can feel the spirit of the revived Bulgarian state. Here, after 1878 and for decades, the most important buildings and symbols of the third Bulgarian state were erected in architecture with the necessary high rank – the Palace, the National Assembly, the Bulgarian Literary Society, the University. As early as 1895, another symbol started to emerge, revealing the public prestige and the important national role of the Bulgarian army in those times. The Army, which accomplished Bulgarian history with so much military glory, especially in the decade after the building was completed. Instead of old Ottoman buildings which sheltered the first Bulgarian military school with its first class from 1879, architect Adolf Vaclav Kolar designed a building for the Military Club. The project was further developed and realized until 1907 (1903 according to different sources) under the leadership of architect Nikola Lazarov. The sculpture decoration on the facades and premises was made by Viennese Andreas Grays (read more about his time in Sofia).

Военния клуб

Three of the corners of the building are highlighted with risalites that resemble solid towers. Seen from the garden next to the Russian church, the building represents masonry and arched windows on the ground floor, while the frames of the second floor windows are resolved as a miniature architecture of base, side pilasters and a gable used with a decorative function. These manners bring us back to the Renaissance era. The classic character of the building is confirmed by the arcade carrying the massive loggia with columns on the second floor, seen from the garden in front of the Military Club (which was formed only in the 1920s and its interesting “relief” reflects the construction site for an unrealized building of the national library). With all this, the image of the Military Club is unique for the whole of Sofia and a worthy architectural symbol of the Bulgarian military glory.