Staraya Basmannaya street attracts me with the fact that it is spacious, full of life, but not crowded. On this street I feel the spirit of the old city, of the real Moscow. It is one of the few central streets which weren’t affected by global renovation. The roads are covered not with “heartless” tiles, but asphalt. On Staraya Basmannay street I feel the history and the special atmosphere. There is the Temple of the Great Martyr Nikita, blocks in which there are apartments, houses with a small number of floors, even wooden houses and the quite famous Garden of Bauman.
The estate and museum of Matveya Muravyeva-Apostola, the estate of Demidova-Kurakina and other buildings which are considered architectural monuments, are situated on this street. There were silk and tobacco factories several centuries ago on this street. There were also state institutions here, for example the first gymnasium for orphan girls. The name of the street comes from the Basmannikov bakers who lived here baking “basmany” bread (“Basm” is the Tatar word that means a relief print on metal or skin).
I love Old Basmannaya, the street for all seasons of the year, even winter. In the summer, on a hot day, it is pleasant to rush onto this street in a light dress, feeling yourself free and young; on a winter evening to walk slowly, admiring the flickering snowflakes on the pavements and wires. On Old Basmannaya I always have the wish to exclaim: “I love you, Moscow!”