House of Stepan Hindliyanphone: 032/ 628 998 link: http://oldplovdiv.com/sights/4
House of Stepan Hindliyan
Stepan Hindliyan’s house was constructed in 1834-35 by unknown builders and represents one of the few houses in Plovdiv, which have preserved their original symmetric design. The relationship between this house and its neighbour Balabanov`s house is impressive. It gives an ensemble kinship of the two buildings. Its owner is known as the founder of one of the four wealthiest families of Armenian descent in the town upon hills. He was a prominent merchant, whose business at the beginning of the 19th century frequently sent him as far as India, which is how he earned the nickname of Hindliyan.
The Hindliyan`s House yard joins together some farm buildings, a bathroom and a basement. Due to the irregular angular shape of the plot, it has a complicated plan, which adgeres to the symmetry only within the frameworks of the inner space. The external architectural solution is rich and varied. The courtyard façade is the most representative, with a central portico, which- unlike the usual practice- is incorporated inwards. The ground floor is organized round a rectangular hall which is open to three large rooms, a small bay-window on the street`s side, an entrance to the bathroom, changing room and one staircase to the second floor. The bath was built following the oriental model, with domes, vaults, niches, amarble floor, a small basin and floor heating with warm air.
The stairs lead to the large hayet (10.20 x 7.10m) surrounded on each side with two large rooms, one of which is of the so-called “lantern” type- with windows to the lounge as well. In terms of its artistic decoration, the house has no rival with its elaborate lines covering not only the walls, but the ceiling as well. Some of the wall paintings have survived intact over the years. The master-builders Moko and Mavrudi from Chirpan worked for more than six months on the painting of all rooms from the outside and from the inside with pilasters, garlands from floral and geometric ornaments, vignettes, still lives and landscape compositions. Paper stencil was used for the first time here to paint the standard motifs on the first floor of the house. All the walls upstairs, including the French-fashion niches, were painted by hand, with the ceilings covered in colour to match the walls. The walls are painted with naivistic landscapes from Constantinople, Venice, Alexandria, Stokholm and other cities. A mirror image of the house can be seen above the door of the storage room in the yard, which serves both as decoration and a blueprint of the house. Another image above the kitchen door is considered to serve the same purpose- it represents a mirror image of the less formal part of the house.
Present day people, the contemporaries of the third millennium, cannot but feel awe at the ingenious and highly sophisticated design of the items, used by people during the 19th century, excellent examples of which can be found in Hindliyan House.
Moreover, many of the cultural events of the city take place in this house.
Summer working hours: 9:00 – 18:00
Winter working hours: 9:00 – 17:30
Day for a free-of-charge visit: First Thursday of each month – for students and retirees