It was cold and damp in Lodz, Poland during our visit. But it did not dampen our spirits to explore this place. It may not be as popular like other European cities such as Paris or Vienna, but we have not been to Poland before, or to Europe for that matter, so we were just as excited to be here.
Piotrkowska Street is the main thoroughfare of Lodz, Poland, and is one of the major attraction of the city. Stretching at about 5 kilometers long, it is one of the longest commercial avenue in Europe.
The street is known for its varied architecture, lined with beautiful 19th century palaces and houses as well as dainty shops, stores and restaurants. The street was remarkably damaged during World War II, but it was slowly revitalized and restored especially in the 1990’s.
one of the ornate buildings in Piotrkowska
coffee tables on the street, but it was too cold to sit outside
me checking the posted upcoming events while a pedicab passes by
view of the street below from a window
a charming bistro where we dined
This place is a combination of old and new. A contradiction if you will, where it is frozen in time…….
……and yet the world rushes by.
The street is furnished with modern lamp-posts, and adorned with a scattering of monuments and sculptures. It is paved with black cobblestone, imitating the old pavement.
The attractions of the street engages you to look ahead…..
Look down where you step on…….
their version of walk of fame
And look up.
There are also mural paintings that goes up the walls.
What brought us to Lodz Poland is another story. We traveled to Poland not primarily for tour or for a leisure trip. We went here for an international piano competition where my children were fortunate to join.
Why Poland you may ask? I would say that many great pianists, past and present, were from Poland, like Frederic Chopin, Arthur Rubenstein, Krystian Zimerman, and Milosz Magin to name a few. So they have a great heritage of pianists.
The first phase of the competition was held here in Piotrkowska street, in an old house (picture above) that was transformed into a small auditorium.
lobby of the auditorium
practicing on the old piano, while a poster of Milosz Magin contemplates and listens
The second phase of the competition and where the winners’ concert was performed was in a much grander place, a palace, a couple of streets from Piotrkowska.
So while I was in this place, I immersed myself with the music of young protégés and seasoned pianists alike.
Here am I listening to a maestro. O wait, it is a statue.
statue of Arthur Rubenstein
From Poland with love,
(* photos taken with an iPhone)