The Moscow State Integrated Museum-Reserve was created in 2005 as a cessionary of the Kolomenskoye State Museum-Reserve, one of the best-known Moscow museums.
Today, the expanded museum comprises three historical sites in the east and southeast of Moscow:
- The ancient royal country residence of Kolomenskoye that includes the Tsar’s Courtyard complex (notably, a UNESCO site – the unique tent-roof XVI century Church of the Ascension), an open-air Museum of Wooden Architecture, and age-old gardens and parks, all the landmarks dating back from XIV to XIX c.;
- Inimitable early XIX century Nikolay Durasov’s manor house (Palace) in Liublino (historical, cultural and natural complex);
- Authentic monuments of the Izmailovo royal country estate (XVII – XIX c.)
Kolomenskoye, a residence of Moscow Grand Princes and Russian Tsars, was first mentioned in the XIV century. Its unique architectural complex is of great art and historical value.
The Church of the Ascension, one of the first tent-roof stone churches in Russia, was built in 1532. It has deeply influenced the architectural tradition of East European countries. In all its years it has never undergone considerable rebuilding or reconstruction, which was one of the reasons for its inclusion in 1994 into UNESCO World Heritage List, along with the Moscow Kremlin and Red Square.
In close proximity to the Church of the Ascension you can see another three architectural landmarks: St. George the Victorious Bell Tower (XVI c.), Water Tower (XVII c.), and a more recent Pavillion (1825, architect Eugraph Tyurin).
In the former village of Dyakovo, now part of Kolomenskoye, there is one more marvellous XVI century architectural site – the Church of Beheading of St. John the Forerunner. Built in the middle of the century, it served as prototype for St. Basil’s (Intercession) Cathedral on Red Square and is attributed to the same architects.
15 May 2008, an open-air Museum of Wooden Architecture was created bringing together monuments from different coins of Russia, including the Passage Gate Tower of the Karelian Monastery of Saint Nicholas (Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery) and Mohkovaya Tower of Sumskoy Stockaded Fort, both from the White Sea coast, and the Tower of Bratsk Stockaded Fort from Eastern Siberia. The monuments date back from the XVII and XVIII centuries.
In Kolomenskoye you will also find important archaeological sites, notably the ancient Dyakovo Hillfort that gave name to the corresponding Iron Age archaeological culture.
Kolomenskoye represents a landscape of national value with the original ancient relief and unique flora surviving. Most of the territory is occupied by vast parks, picturesque ravines, high hills and the quiet Moskva River bank. This reserve is remarkable in that it unites historical, architectural, archaeological and natural landmarks almost in the centre of the city.
In 2010, reconstruction of the wooden Palace of the Tsar Alexey Mikhailovich was completed on the territory formerly known as the village of Dyakovo. The purpose of this large-scale project was to create a museum and exhibition centre, that would house a new permanent exposition displaying elements of the XVII century culture and every-day life of the Russian tsars as well as regular exhibitions from the museum’s stock.
The total area of the palace consisting of six premises connected by corridors makes 7,230 sq. m. including I, 400 sq.m. intended for reconstructed interiors. In each of the 24 interiors created close ties can be traced between the architecture and design on the one hand and function on the other hand. 226 experts of 20 professions were involved in this scrupulous task. The reconstructed wooden palace has become a particular museum site that is now home to many bright educational and tourist projects on the Russian history and culture and still has a great potential for new ones.
Liublino is a park and palace complex dating back to the XVIII and XIX centuries. The land on which it is situated was first mentioned at the end of the XVI century. In the 1680s, it was owned by a well-known noble Godunov family; at the beginning of the XIX century, the estate was bought by Nikolay Durasov (1760-1818), a rich Moscow landlord, the best-known owner of Liublino. Under Nikolay Durasov Liublino became a favourite rest and entertainment place for Moscow nobility, a venue of parties, receptions, theatre performances and concerts. Nikolay Durasov’s palace is one of a few examples of late classicism surviving in Moscow. Every-day life of the Russian estate, traditions and culture of the nobility are brightly illustrated by interior expositions and exhibitions arranged inside.
Izmailovo is a famous country residence of the Russian Tsars. In 1654, when Tsar Alexey Mikhailovich Romanov became owner of these vast ancestral boyars’ lands, the estate became part of the palace household. It was there, at the linen yard, that the sixteen-year-old Tsar Peter I found in 1688 an old English boat, ordering since than to call Izmailovo “the cradle of the Russian fleet”. In Izmailovo one can see architectural sites dating back to the end of the XVII century and making part of the Tsar’s Courtyard as well as premises of Nikolaevsky alms-house built in the XIX century for 1812 Patriotic War ex-servicemen.