Our jewel of the 19th century architecture is one of the most characteristic structures in Lublin.
The EUROPA Hotel *** was built between 1865 – 1867, according to the design of the provincial architect, Ludwik Szamota. It was modelled after the Europejski Hotel in Warsaw, designed by Henryk Marconi - an outstanding representative of the Polish Neo-Renaissance.
The building was erected in the square belonging to the Czartoryski Princes, purchased by Marcin Kobyliński and Chaim Forszteter. The eclectic building, situated in the corner of the representative square, became its pride - and remains such to this day. The structure was majestic for the contemporary town, impressive thanks to its architecture and standard, and has always attracted guests with its modernity and level of comfort. In the old times, most guests came from the wealthy gentry circles. Even then, the building was already equipped with luxurious bathrooms, as well as its own restaurant and confectionary on the ground floor. The Europa complex also included: a glove manufacturer, an accessory shop, a perfumery, and an optic and physical workshop. In 1878, the owner of the workshop, Jakub Brilant, brought a telephone to Lublin and conducted the first trial of this invention.
In 1926, pursuant to the will of the Michelis family, the ownership to the hotel was transferred to the Lubelskie Charity Association. On 9 September 1939, the building was partially damaged by Nazi bombing.
After the devastations of the World War II, the facility was rebuilt, preserving its former look. After the war, the Europa Hotel and Restaurant, now state-owned, enjoyed a great reputation. The famous lawyers Lublin, professors at the Marie Curie-Skłodowska University and the Catholic University of Lublin, as well as priests and artists all had their favourite tables at the establishment. Aleksander Aleksy, a popular actor of that time, was also one of the regulars. It was enough to order "a shot" to have the honour of a conversation with the master. In turn, a well-known Lublin jeweller, Jan Kazimierz Kalicki, entered the restaurants on horseback after a parade to drink "one for the road" with the guests.
In 2000, under the supervision of the new manager, Europa S.A, the building gained a brand new image and standard. The facade of the former building was one of the few features that remained unchanged. The furnishing and interior design were executed in a close cooperation with the conservation services.
Medallions presenting King Jan III Sobieski and his wife Marysieńka can be seen in the Hotel to this day. According to the legend, couples that swear to love each other underneath those medallions and spend their wedding night in the nearby suite, have a guaranteed happy and prosperous life.
A few examples of the original historical elements of the building were renovated and integrated into the new design. The Europa Hotel is listed as an architecture monument and included in the Lublin tourist route. Today, the Europa Hotel is one of the most recognisable hotels in the city with a unique history.
After his stay the Europa Hotel, Ryszard Kapuściński wrote:
"I would list Europa among the most beautiful hotels on our continent. Congratulations and thank you".