You know that waxy turquoise and purple cup that's so '90s meet its genius designer.
Asian-American Affairs Reporter, HuffPost
You may not know its name, but we know you've seen the classic squiggly design that's most recognizable from paper cups.
Yeah, you know what we're talking about -- that purple and turquoise pattern that hits you with giant pangs of nostalgia. The "Jazz" design began showing up on paper cups about 23 years ago . Recently, an AMA request came in from a Reddit user who wanted to know who the designer was. That pushed reporter Thomas Gounley of Missouri's Springfield News-Leader to do some digging.
After much investigation, Gounley was successful and last week he discovered that 50-year-old Gina Ekiss , who lives in Aurora, Mississippi, is the iconic design's creator, according to his piece in the News-Leader. Ekiss, who's now a custom frame shop manager at a Hobby Lobby, was met with Internet acclaim as the discovery spread across social media outlets.
“I’m just still pretty stunned about the whole deal,” Ekiss told ABC News in reaction to her Internet stardom. “I’m thrilled that it’s still popular.”
The path to finding Ekiss wasn't an easy one. The reporter only knew the designer's first name as well as the fact that she had worked for the Sweetheart Cup Company, which was later bought by Solo Cup Company. He eventually found a tweet from a person claiming to be the creator's daughter, according to his article. After looking through public records and coming across Ekiss' name and address, Gounley drove to her house and confirmed his suspicions.
Turns out, Ekiss had created Jazz as part of an internal cup design contest at the Sweetheart Cup Company in 1989 , after outside design firms had came up with unsatisfying results. Ekiss said that Jazz was among three or four different designs she had submitted, and its colors are just ones she felt meshed well.
“I just did turquoise, or teal, because that’s one of my favorite colors,” she told ABC News . “I wanted another overlapping color that would work well together. I just liked the purple with it and everybody seemed pleased with that.”
The 50-year-old still keeps a few products with the Jazz design in her house, and says it's " insane " that her artwork has become such a memorable part of '90s culture.
Phew! We can all breathe easy now that this pressing mystery's finally been solved.
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From Disposable to Iconic: The Story of the 90s Cup
The 90s were a time of great change. One of the most significant changes was the way we approached disposable cups. In the past, these cups were seen as trash that would be thrown away after one use. But the 90s brought about a new attitude towards disposable cups, embodied by the Solo Cup.
The Solo Cup quickly became an icon of the 90s, and its story is one of innovation and reinvention. This cup was different than any other before it. It was sturdy, could be reused, and had a variety of uses beyond just holding drinks. Below I will explain the story behind the famous 90s cups.
The name of the 90s cup
Solo Cup Company, now known as Dart Container Corporation, is the manufacturer of the 90s cup. The company was founded in 1936 by Leo Hulseman. It originally started as a paper product maker but soon began experimenting with plastic. In 1955, the company created its first plastic cup. This cup was made of thin, flimsy plastic and was not very durable. However, it was still a major innovation and quickly became popular.
In the 1970s, Solo Cup Company introduced a new line of cups called “The Unbreakable.” These cups were thicker plastic and much more durable than their predecessors. They quickly became popular among partygoers and bar-goers who wanted a cup that wouldn’t break if it was dropped.
In the 1980s , Solo Cup Company introduced a new product that would change how we think about disposable cups forever: the Solo Cup. The Solo Cup was made of thick, sturdy plastic and could be reused multiple times.
It quickly became popular among people who wanted a cup that they could use over and over again. On the other hand, the Dixie cups have the same items, but it was founded by Lawrence Luellen , an entirely different company.
The attitude change toward disposable cups that happens in the 90s
In the 90s, the attitude towards disposable cups changed dramatically. In the past, these cups were seen as trash that would be thrown away after one use. But the 90s brought about a new attitude towards disposable cups, embodied by the Solo Cup.
This cup was different than any other before it. It was sturdy, could be reused, and had a variety of uses beyond just holding drinks. The Solo Cup quickly became an icon of the 90s, and its story is one of innovation and reinvention.
The way the Solo Cup company became an icon of the 90s
The Solo Cup became an icon of the 90s because it was different from any other cup. It quickly became popular among people who wanted a cup that they could use over and over again.
It was made of thick, sturdy plastic and could be reused multiple times. The Solo Cup was also affordable, making it accessible to everyone. These factors made the Solo Cup an icon of the 90s.
What made the Solo Cup different from other cups?
The Solo Cup was different from other cups because it was made of thick, sturdy plastic and could be reused multiple times. It quickly became popular among people who wanted a cup that they could use over and over again. The Solo Cup was also affordable, making it accessible to everyone. These factors made the Solo Cup an icon of the 90s.
What are some of the uses for the Solo paper Cups?
The Solo Cup can be used for various things beyond just holding drinks. It can be used as a storage container, a plant pot, or a makeshift stool. The versatility of the Solo Cup makes it one of the most iconic products of the 90s.
Who made the jazz paper Cup design?
The Solo Cup jazz design was inspired by the Art Deco movement of the 1920s. Gina Ekiss, the creator of the disposable cup design, was influenced by this period when she created the jazz cup pattern in 1992. The results of her creation became one of the most recognizable patterns from the 90s and can still be found for purchase today and for many more decades. This was a company created with this pattern called the Sweetheart Cup Company , but in 2004 Solo Cup Company purchased this brand, and now they own all the rights to the print.
What is the significance of the 90s cup?
The 90s cup is significant because it represents a change in attitude towards disposable cups. In the past, these cups were seen as trash that would be thrown away after one use. But the 90s brought about a new attitude towards disposable cups, embodied by the Solo Cup.
This cup was different than any other before it. It was sturdy, could be reused, and had a variety of uses beyond. The Solo Jazz pattern is copyrighted and can only be used with permission from the Solo Cup Company.
What can we learn from the story of the Solo Cup?
The story of the Solo Cup teaches us that innovation can come from anywhere. The Solo Cup was created by a company known for its disposable cups. But the company saw an opportunity to create something new and different, and they did just that. The result was a product that forever changed how we think about disposable cups.
I am a blogger that was born in the 1980's. So I decided to write about the 1980's because I feel that was one of the best decades ever.
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90s jazz design: cups, controversy, and nostalgia
From paper cups to pop culture — the surprisingly dramatic story of the 90s jazz design.
Cups don’t usually make history — but the 90s jazz cup just hit different.
You saw it in the hands of the field trip mom serving you a cup of warm Kool Aid. It showed up at a slumber party, in the guest bathroom rinse cup dispenser. And there it was again, casually held by a character on your favorite sitcom.
Some designs made history by gracing billboards, runways, or magazines. Their legacies were built on the reputations of famous designers. These ideas were meant to stand out and leave their mark on the world.
The jazz design was never supposed to do any of those things. It wasn’t created with the goal of making history. But, somehow, a paper cup design became iconic.
So, where did those teal and purple crayon scribbles come from? How did they end up on disposable cups? And why — decades later — has the 90s jazz cup design become a symbol of the era?
To find the answers, we’ll need a dash of history, a heaping helping of internet beef, and a whole lot of nostalgia.
It started with a simple cup design
Those now-famous teal and purple scribbles were introduced in 1992 as a disposable cup design by the Sweetheart Cup Company .
After working with external design agencies, Sweetheart Cup Company realized the agencies didn’t understand the printing process — their designs were too complicated to reliably print onto cups. So, the company announced an internal design contest with the goal of finding a design that would print well and appeal to the masses.
The winning design — then simply called “jazz” — used only two colors and was intentionally messy. This allowed the printers to move quickly without worrying about the crispness of the image or whether or not the crayon-like squiggles aligned.
By 2002, the jazz design was Sweetheart Cup Company’s top-grossing design of all time. And when the Solo Cup Company bought out Sweetheart in 2004 — they continued to use the design. Because of the buyout, the jazz design is sometimes known as “Solo Jazz.”
The jazz cup epitomized 90s culture
Originally, the 90s jazz scribbles were meant to be aesthetically pleasing in a neutral way — a straightforward design for paper cups, plates, and bowls. But both the design style and the design itself have become beloved representations of the 90s.
While the actual inspiration is unclear — more on that later — the jazz cup design clearly matches the 90s design aesthetic with its vibrant color combinations and graffiti-like scribbles. Both aspects are characteristic of 90s maximalism , which embraces absurdity, loud color schemes, and conflicting patterns and textures.
The jazz cup design fits right in with 90s pop culture. Just look at the opening credits for popular TV shows from the era, like Saved by the Bell , Fresh Prince , and Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper . All of them feature funky and slightly chaotic animations full of zig zags and clashing patterns.
Eclectic shapes, neon colors, and busy illustrations were quintessential aspects of 90s web , fashion, and graphic design. Clearly, the jazz cup was a product of its time.
But while everyone has their own taste in TV shows, clothes, and websites, most people aren’t picky about the disposable cups they use. Thanks to the wide distribution of the cup, this simple design became a shared experience for anyone who grew up in the 90s.
Nostalgia & internet drama put the jazz design back into the spotlight
Although Gina Ekiss, formerly of the Sweetheart Cup Company, is credited as the creator of the 90s jazz design — that credit is not uncontested.
A couple decades after the jazz cup was released, a question on Reddit about the graphic designer behind it sparked controversy. Designer Stephanie Miller responded, claiming she created the original design in the late ‘80s while working for Imperial Bondware — a Sweetheart Cup Company competitor.
Both Stephanie and Gina claim that they created the design for an internal contest at their respective companies. However, Stephanie is adamant that her design came first and speculates that it was stolen , brought to Sweetheart Cup Company, and traced or adapted by Gina.
All this controversy led to internet sleuthing and caught the attention of a few investigative journalists. Unfortunately, since the design changed hands from Sweetheart Cup Company to Solo Cup Company and then again to Dart Container Corporation in 2012, the history is murky. Dart Container Corporation explained that most historical information has been lost, but their best assumption is that Gina is the original creator.
Journalist Thomas Gounley wasn’t satisfied with that answer, so he tracked down Gina , who retired in Aurora, Missouri. Gina confirmed that she created the design while working at Sweetheart Cup Company and showed Thomas her original charcoal drawings of the famous squiggles. Most people took this as proof and the internet embraced Gina as the jazz cup creator.
But Stephanie holds strong with her story , adding that the original design was created with paint, not charcoal — pointing to a teal-crusted paintbrush she still has to back up her claim.
So…who actually created it? We’re not here to take sides. And 90s jazz fans seem to care a lot more about the nostalgia that the design sparks than whoever made it. Not only does “Solo Jazz Pattern” hold “Confirmed Meme” status (an actual thing), it also shows up in more than 500 Etsy listings . Decades after its creation, the teal and purple squiggles still show up on stickers, clothes, and even modern websites .
At this point, it’s impossible to separate the actual design from the hazy history, internet beef, and childhood memories. The 90s jazz design isn’t revered because it’s the perfect design, it’s cherished because it’s the perfect representation of the 90s kids’ shared experience.
You never know which creations will earn a spot in design history
Gina, Stephanie, and the people of the internet might not agree on the details, but we can all agree on one thing — no one expected a teal and purple doodle on a paper cup to be a hot topic of conversation decades after its creation.
Design trends and pop culture are unpredictable. And that’s what makes them so exciting. You never know when a napkin doodle — or maybe a charcoal drawing or swipe of a paint brush — might make history.
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The Internet is Freaking Out Over Finding the Designer of '90s ‘Jazz’ Cup
Gina Ekiss, of Aurora, Missouri, designed the original artwork with charcoal.
— -- Remember those jazzy wax paper cups with their awesome teal and purple squiggle design?
They were so commonplace — whether at the movie theater, dentist’s office, ice cream shop or roller rink — that they are likely part of everyone's subconscious.
But 23 years after the cups were introduced, we can appreciate this gnarly nostalgic design for what it is: pure throwback perfection.
The retro design, appropriately called “Jazz,” has been immortalized on tons of fun merchandise from T-shirts to sneakers, bicycle helmets and nail art, to name just a few. The creative genius behind the snazzy neon-colored logo, however, remained a mystery for the most part — until now.
Meet Gina Ekiss, the original artist of the masterful design who now lives a quiet life with her family in Aurora, Missouri.
“I’m just still pretty stunned about the whole deal,” Ekiss, 50, told ABC News of her shocking new celebrity status online. “I’m thrilled that it’s still popular.”
It took the serious sleuthing of one local Missouri reporter, Thomas Gounley of the Springfield News-Leader , to track Ekiss down after stumbling across a Reddit page hoping to locate the “graphic designer who made the ‘jazzy 90s’ image that appeared on millions of paper cups.”
“My family and everybody just kind of grew up with the fact that I did it,” she explained of her masterful design. “I did a lot of designs but this one particular seems to have some staying power and now it’s got its own life online.”
Ekiss worked at the Sweetheart Cup Company in Springfield, Missouri, from 1987 to 2002, before the company was bought by Solo and moved their art department to Baltimore. In the first few years she was with the Sweetheart Cup Company, they held a contest to come up with a new design for the mass-produced cups.
“They hired several other outside firms to come up with the designs but didn’t like any of the outside stuff they were receiving,” she recalled. “We had approximately 30 artists here in Springfield and we said, ‘Why can’t we submit some designs?’”
She created three or four designs for the contest and “Jazz” is the one the corporate headquarters ended up choosing.
The original artwork was actually drawn with charcoal, Ekiss explained.
“I’ve still got the original at home,” she said. “I think I probably just had some on hand at my desk and was just messing around and I liked what came out.”
One of the parameters for the contest was that the design could only be one or two colors because they were going to be run at a fast speed on the presses.
“I just did turquoise, or teal, because that’s one of my favorite colors,” said Ekiss. “I wanted another overlapping color that would work well together. I just liked the purple with it and everybody seemed pleased with that.”
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How the Internet Tracked Down the Designer of the Beloved Jazz Paper Cup
Meet Gina, the woman behind the iconic paper cup pattern
This iconic teal and purple design has been gracing the sides of paper cups since the 1990s, as designer Khoi Vinh explains on his blog Subtraction.com . And since its introduction, it has been bulding a steady team of fans. Today, the pattern shows up on cars, t-shirts and pillow cases of enthusiasts. But for a long time, nobody knew the origins of the design.
Three weeks ago, one fan turned to fellow Reddit users to track down what Google could not. The hivemind came through, to some extent: Gina, once a designer at the Sweetheart Cup Company in Springfield in the 1980s and 1990s, had dreamed up the teal and purple brushstrokes of Jazz.
Curious to find out more about Gina, Thomas Gounley for the News-Leader in Springfield, Missouri kept digging . After many calls and emails, he stumbled upon a Tweet claiming the Gina in question was the user’s mother. After messaging the user with no response, he turned to the phone book and tracked Gina to Aurora, Missouri, a few towns over from Springfield. Finally, he found himself at Gina’s doorstep. "She wasn't expecting me to just show up, but invited me in," Gounley writes.
Jazz had been her submission to a 1989 internal company design contest for a new stock image. It appeared on paper plates and cups beginning in the early 1990s. Ekiss left the company in 2002 when the art department transferred to Baltimore. When she left, “she was told by Sweetheart that Jazz was the company’s top-grossing stock design in history," Gounley writes.
Today, it's hard to find the Jazz cup in the wild. The company doesn't make them anymore, and wants to redesign them to be more modern should they release them again. "It just doesn't really fit out there anymore," a representative from the company that now owns the facility where the cups were made told Gounley. But to fans of the Jazz cup, Gina's design is perfect as is.
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Helen Thompson writes about science and culture for Smithsonian . She's previously written for NPR, National Geographic News , Nature and others.
Designer behind that iconic ’90s jazz cup pattern finally revealed
The power of the internet..
Posted on Jun 22, 2015 Updated on May 28, 2021, 12:48 pm CDT
If you’ve ever gotten a fountain drink from a mall food court or at an amusement park, you probably recognize the design of two blue strokes wrapped around the cup—the wider strokes a lighter aqua blue, the skinnier ones a dark shade that borders on the side of purple.
And the pattern’s famous yet mysterious designer has—after a lengthy bout of Internet sleuthing—finally been found.
The search started with a Reddit AMA request for the “graphic designer who made the ‘jazzy 90s’ image that appeared on millions of paper cups.” Reddit u/mcglaven had a slew of questions, including how much the person got paid and how long they spent on the design. He had already tried deducing the identity of the designer through Google, but found nothing, and turned to Reddit for help.
Mcglaven’s Reddit thread revealed many clues about the design, known as “Jazz,” including the name of the woman behind the design: Gina. Redditor u/pdschatz, artist who was part of the online community that helped appropriate the design into the cultural phenomenon it is on the Internet today, contributed what he knew (as did other Reddit users):
The Jazz design was created in 1991 by an artist in the Springfield, Missouri Art Department at Sweetheart. Sweetheart had an internal contest to come up with a new stock design and Gina’s Jazz Design was selected. Full blown production across multiple products did not start until early 1992.
View post on imgur.com
Thomas Gounley , a Watchdog Reporter for Missouri’s Springfield News-Leader, came across Reddit’s quest to find Gina and used his investigative skills to find the illustrious Gina. He documents his eventual discovery of Gina Ekiss , the woman, the myth, the legend, and her story behind designing Jazz.
Ekiss submitted “three or four ideas,” and other colleagues did the same. The decision was made in 1990 or 1991, she said. “They came back and said that was the one they wanted to go with, and what did I call it,” she said. “I had no idea. So I had to come up with a name for it, so we just called it jazz.”
As to the pattern’s status as nostalgic meme today, Ekiss was nothing less than shocked. “It just seems so insane to me,” she told Gounley.
Yeah, insanely cool .
Update 9:30am CT, Sept. 25: An earlier version of this story stated that Ekiss’ last name was Gounley. The error has been corrected.
H/T Gizmodo , Reddit | Photos via Imgur, Nathan Papes/ News-Leader
Gabe Bergado is a Daily Dot alumnus who covered dank memes, teens, and the weirdest corners of the Internet. One time, Ted Cruz supporters turned him into a meme—or at least tried to. In 2017, he started reporting for Teen Vogue's entertainment section.
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Article by kurt kohlstedt, jazz cups: the snazzy paper tableware pattern that encapsulates early 90s design, kurt kohlstedt.
Imagine a plastic cup and one particular red-wrapped variant will likely come to mind, designed in the 1970s by Robert Leo Hulseman, son of the Solo Cup Company’s founder. In the realm of paper cups, there is a parallel icon — the dynamic “Jazz” pattern is also a classic, but its history and the artist behind it were largely a mystery until recently.
Today, the very 1990s-style teal-and-purple Jazz design can be found on t-shirts, sandals, bumper stickers and other fan-made merchandise. Originally, though, it was applied by the Sweetheart Cup Company to a series of plates, bowls and cups. Sweetheart has since been acquired by Solo, which in turn was acquired by the Dart Container Corporation, adding layers of complexity to the search for the pattern’s origins.
Unsatisfied with the incomplete story, Springfield News-Leader reporter Thomas Gounley began to dig deeper, searching for Gina himself. After failing to find any direct references to her in local news archives, Gounley made a lucky find on Twitter: someone claiming to be the designer’s daughter. From there, he traveled to nearby Aurora to talk with the woman who had, as it turned out, designed the pattern.
Gina Ekiss began working at Sweetheart’s art department in 1987 along with a few dozen other artists. As Ekiss recalls, the company wasn’t thrilled with initial external submissions for a new pattern design, so they turned to their own in-house creatives. There weren’t many limitations, she recalls, but “they needed something that if it misregistered slightly, it wasn’t going to matter.” The design also had to work for a variety of customer types — it was to be sold in stores, used in hospitals and so forth — so it needed a level of generic and universal appeal. She started with charcoal on vellum, then scanned the results.
“I was reluctant to let the computer have too much control,” Ekiss recalls. “I think part of the reason that I came up with a looser design is because I still wanted to feel like my actual hand went into producing it.” Once scanned, color was added and the design was dubbed Jazz. A bold blend of bright colors and brush strokes, the design encapsulates much of what the 90s have since became known for aesthetically.
Gina Ekiss’ son is in college studying design. He sees some injustice in his mother’s story http://t.co/KkIxfn96xJ pic.twitter.com/pYgDtonV04 — Thomas Gounley (@tgounley) July 5, 2015
There were no big bonuses or royalties or celebrations — Ekiss was simply a staff designer who continued to work for a salary at Sweetheart until the early 2000s. When she left the company, Gounley writes that Gina “was told by Sweetheart that Jazz was the company’s top-grossing stock design in history, dating all the way back to the Lily Tulip days,” before Sweetheart was Sweetheart (or Solo or Dart).
To this day, Ekiss keeps a few Jazz-adorned objects around and still sees them when she’s out and about. The design is anachronistic or nostalgic, depending on one’s perspective, but either way, it is persistent. Dart, meanwhile, has considered discontinuing its use from time to time, but Jazz’s popularity keeps it in circulation, winding across plates and wrapping around an uncountable number of cups.
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Moscow International Business Center (Moscow City)
- Guide to Russia
What can you do at Moscow City?
- Dine in style: Moscow City is home to 100+ cafes and restaurants, including Europe’s highest restaurant and ice-cream shop
- See Moscow like never before: Ascend to one of Moscow City’s observation decks for an unparalleled panorama of Moscow
- Admire world-class architecture: Each of Moscow City’s skyscrapers has distinctive architecture and design
- Learn something new: Visit the Museum of High-Rise Architecture in Moscow or the Metro Museum
Moscow City is a multifunctional complex in the west of Moscow, which has come to represent the booming business of Russia’s capital. Its skyscrapers enrich Moscow’s skyline, contrasting the medieval cupolas and Stalinist high-rises. Visitors to Moscow City can enjoy entertainment high in the sky, as the complex is home not just to offices, but to restaurants, cinemas, viewing platforms, and museums.
Photo by Alex Zarubi on Unsplash
History of Moscow City
Moscow City was first conceived in 1991 by honoured Soviet architect Boris Tkhor, who proposed to construct a business center in Moscow. It would be complete with gleaming skyscrapers rivalling those of New York and London, to reflect the new life and growing ambitions of post-Soviet Russia.
The chosen site was a stone quarry and disused industrial zone in western Moscow, in between the Third Ring Road and Moskva River. Initially, the territory was divided into 20 sections arranged in a horseshoe shape around a central zone. The skyscrapers would increase in height as they spiralled around the central section, with shorter structures built on the waterfront to give the taller buildings behind a view of the river.
Architect Gennady Sirota, who contributed to iconic projects such as the Olympic Sports Complex on Prospekt Mira, was selected as the chief architect, and many other world-famous architects were attracted to Moscow to realise their visions in Moscow City.
What can you see and do at Moscow City?
Where Moscow’s cityscape was once dominated by Stalin’s Seven Sisters skyscrapers , this is no more. Moscow City is home to eight of Russia’s ten tallest buildings, six of which exceed 300 metres in height. More buildings are still under construction there today, including the One Tower (which will be Europe’s second-tallest building). Once completed, Moscow City will comprise more than 20 innovative structures.
Each of Moscow City’s skyscrapers was designed by its own architect, lending the cluster of skyscrapers a unique appearance. Aside from being a site of architectural wonder, Moscow City is a place for leisure and entertainment with over 100 cafes and restaurants, exhibition spaces, cinemas, viewing platforms, and more.
Photo by Nikita Karimov on Unsplash
- East Tower: 374m, 97 floors; West Tower: 243m, 63 floors
- Completed in 2017
- Architects: Sergey Tchoban and Peter Schweger
The East Federation Tower is the tallest building in Moscow, and the second-tallest building in Europe after the Lakhta Centre in St Petersburg. Visitors can enjoy a luxurious meal of seafood, truffles or steak at restaurant ‘Sixty’ on the 62nd floor of the West Tower, or visit Europe’s highest observation deck, ‘Panorama 360’, on the 89th floor of the East Tower.
Did you know? The ice cream and chocolate shop on the 360 observation deck are the highest in the world!
- South Tower: 354m, 85 floors; North Tower: 254m, 49 floors
- Completed in 2015
- Architect: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP
The South OKO Tower is the third-tallest building in Russia and Europe. Here, you can visit ‘Ruski’ to dine on hearty Russian cuisine cooked on a real Russian stove, and have a drink in the ice bar. Alternatively, visit restaurant, nightclub and performance space ‘Birds’; the restaurant is the highest in Europe, situated on the 86th floor roof terrace alongside an observation deck. The OKO Towers are also home to karaoke club ‘City Voice’.
Did you know? Underneath OKO Towers is the largest underground parking in Europe, with 16 levels and 3,400 parking spaces.
- 339m tall, 75 floors
- Architects : Mikhail Posokhin, Frank Williams, Gennady Sirota
Another multifunctional skyscraper, which was designed as the first truly ‘green’ building in Moscow. The Mercury Tower has a distinct geometric shape and copper-coloured glazing, and was the tallest building in Europe upon completion. Visit ‘More i myaso’ (Sea and meat) on the first floor of the tower to enjoy European and Mediterranean cuisine whilst surrounded by greenery. On the 2nd and 40th floors a modern art gallery, the ‘ILONA-K artspace’, has just opened.
City of Capitals
- Moscow Tower: 302m, 76 floors; St Petersburg Tower: 257m, 65 floors
- Completed in 2009
- Architect: Bureau NBBJ
The unique geometric design of the City of Capitals towers resembles stacks of rotating blocks, and is rooted in Constructivism of the early Soviet period (many Soviet Constructivist buildings can be found in Moscow). Visitors to the Moscow Tower can enjoy a range of cuisines – traditional Italian dishes on the summer terrace of ‘Tutto Bene’, Panasian cuisine in the tropical luxury of the ‘Bamboo Bar’ on the 1st floor’, and poke or smoothie bowls at ‘Soul in the Bowl’ cafe on the 80th floor.
Tower on the Embankment
- Tower A: 84m; Tower B:127m; Tower C: 268m, 61 floors
- Completed in 2007
- Architects: Vehbi Inan and Olcay Erturk
After completion, the Tower on the Embankment was the tallest building in Europe, and is now the 13th tallest. It houses the headquarters of several large Russian and international companies, including IBM and KPMG. There are two cafes located on the 1st floor of Tower C – self-service café ‘Obed Bufet’ (Lunch Buffet) and Bakery Chain ‘Khleb Nasushchny’ (Daily Bread).
- 255m tall, 54 floors
- Architects: Philip Nikandrov and RMJM Scotland Ltd
Evolution is Moscow City’s most recognisable tower, and the 11th tallest building in Russia. Its façade is a true architectural marvel, comprising continuous strips of curved glazing spiralling high into the sky. According to the architect, Philip Nikandrov, the spiral shape of the tower honours centuries of architectural design in Russia, from the onion domes of St Basil's Cathedral to Vladimir Shukhov’s Tatlin Tower, a masterpiece of Constructivist design. Outside the Evolution tower is a landscaped terrace and pedestrian zone descending to the Presnenskaya Embankment, which was also designed by Nikandrov.
Did you know? Moscow’s largest wedding palace was supposed to be built on the site of the Evolution tower, though the project was abandoned.
- 239m tall, 60 floors
- Completed in 2011
Imperia’s interesting design has a curved roof and an arched glass façade. Inside the tower are various cafes including ‘City Friends’ for all-day breakfasts and light lunches, ‘Mama in the City’ for simple meals of Russian cuisine, and ‘abc kitchen’ for European and Indian-inspired dishes. Alternatively, visit ‘High Bar’ on the 56th floor for cocktails with a view. In Imperia you’ll also find the Museum of High-Rise Construction in Moscow (suitably located on the 56th floor), and the Camera Immersive Theatre.
Did you know? Inside Vystavochnaya metro station is the Metro Museum , dedicated to the history of the beautiful Moscow Metro!
- 130m tall, 26 floors
- Completed in 2001
- Architect: Boris Tkhor
Tower 2000 was Moscow City’s first tower. It stands on the opposite bank of the Moskva River, and houses a viewing platform from which visitors can admire an unparalleled panorama of Moscow City. The Bagration Bridge reaches across the river from the tower to Moscow City, and underneath are piers from where you can take boat trips.
Photo by Alexander Popov on Unsplash
Afimall is Moscow’s largest entertainment and shopping complex, home to 450 shops, cafes and restaurants, a cinema, and a virtual-reality game park. The shopping centre is located in the central section of Moscow City, and a cinema and concert hall are currently under construction there.
Sechenov Botanical Gardens: The botanical gardens of the First Moscow State Medical University was created for students’ training and research in 1946. Today it is open for free visits, and is home to a large arboretum.
Park Krasnaya Presnya: This park belonged to the Studenets estate of the Gagarin princes. It is a monument of 18th and 19th century landscaping, with Dutch ponds, ornate bridges, and tree-lined alleys. There are also sports facilities, sports equipment rental, and cafes.
Photo by Akkit on Wikipedia
Essential information for visitors
Email: [email protected]
Phone: +7 (495) 730-23-33
Nearest metro: Mezhdunarodnaya (closest to the skyscrapers), Delovoy Tsentr (underneath Afimall), Vystavochnaya (closest to Expocentre)
Moscow - St. Petersburg 3-star cruise by Vodohod
This is our most popular cruise covering Moscow and St. Petersburg and all of the significant towns between these 2 cities. Besides the Two Capitals, you will visit the ancient towns of Uglich, Yaroslavl and Goritsy, the island of Kizhi, and Mandrogui village.
Two Capitals and the Golden Ring
This tour covers the best sights of Moscow and St. Petersburg along with a trip to the Golden Ring - a group of medieval towns to the northeast of Moscow. Ancient Kremlins, onion-shaped domes and wooden architecture is just a small part of what awaits you on this amazing tour.
This is our most popular Moscow tour that includes all the most prominent sights. You will become acquainted with ancient Russia in the Kremlin, admire Russian art in the Tretyakov Gallery, listen to street musicians as you stroll along the Old Arbat street, and learn about Soviet times on the Moscow Metro tour.
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Letovo Schoolcampus / atelier PRO
- Curated by Fernanda Castro
- Architects: atelier PRO
- Area Area of this architecture project Area: 39000 m²
- Year Completion year of this architecture project Year: 2018
- Photographs Photographs: NARODIZKIY , Dmitry Voinov , atelier PRO
- Interior Design : Atelier PRO , Thijs Klinkhamer
- Landscape Designer : Buro Sant en Co
- Client: Letovo
- Project Architects: Dorte Kristensen, Pascale Leistra, Karho Yeung
- Design Team: Thijs Klinkhamer, Abel de Raadt, Alessia Topolnyk
- Russian Co Architect: Atrium, Moscow
- City: Moscow
- Country: Russia
- Did you collaborate on this project?
Text description provided by the architects. The official grand opening of a special school, Letovo School , took place in Moscow last September. The assignment entailed a 20 hectare schoolcampus with educational facilities, student housing and school staff housing. The school campus offers extended outdoor sports facilities with a soccer stade, a running track, tennis courts and basketball courts. In addition there is a greenhouse, a treeyard and ample space for wandering and relaxation in the green.
While the architecture and interior of the school were designed by atelier PRO, the landscape design was developed by Buro Sant en Co landscape architecture. Russian firm Atrium Architectural Studio was responsible for the technical execution. In 2014 Atelier PRO had won the international design competition, the construction began mid-2016 and the campus was taken into use by mid-2018.
Letovo, a dream come true Letovo School is a special school for gifted and motivated children aged 12 to 17. The idea to create the school came from entrepreneur and philanthropist Vadim Moshkovich: ‘My dream was to offer talented children from all over the country access to high-quality education, regardless of their parents’ financial means. This school makes it possible for them to continue their studies at the 10 best universities in the country or at one of the top 50 universities in the world.’
Landscape-inspired design and shape Located in Novaya Moskva,southwest of Moscow ,the campus sits atop a beautiful plot of land that slopes down to a forest-lined river. Distinctive level variations were applied in and around the school to integrate the architecture into the landscape.
The shape of the large complex brings it down to a human scale for the children: the building appears to dance across the landscape due to its dynamic design. Due to the perspective effect one only ever sees part of the building's full size when walking around, which gives the impression of a refined scale. The building’s contours and flowing curves create surprising indoor and outdoor spaces as well.
The heart of the school: the central hub The central hub is the place where day-to-day life at the school unfolds. This flexible, transformable space will be used throughout the day as an informal meeting place. The dance studio on the ground floor can be transformed through a few simple adjustments into a theatre with a stage, a cosy living room or an auditorium that can accommodate 1,000 people for special events such as graduation ceremonies and large celebrations, as seen at the grand opening. This central hub connects the building’s three wings: the art wing, the south wing with science- and general-use rooms and the sports wing
Learning environment with a diversity in working spaces Letovo envisioned an innovative and modern take on existing education in Russia. In the spatial design, this perspective translates into space for theoretical education as well as special areas for group work and independent study in the tapered building wings. In the library wing there are silence spaces workshop spaces and a debating room. These are all supportive to the student’s personal development.
Sports programme In addition to the extended sports outdoor facilities, the indoor supply of sports facilities is substantial. These cover fitness rooms, martial arts rooms, a swimming pool, a small and a large sports hall. Around the sports hall there’s an indoor running track which can be used throughout the year. It is available to school staff and external users as well.
The interior, also designed by atelier PRO, is tailored to the aims of the ambitious programme. The design of the interior also focuses extensively on the various spaces where students can go to chill and meet up with friends. The extreme cold in this area makes the school’s indoor atmosphere important for relaxation.
Ambitous learning environment The Russian client has established a private, non-profit school which aims to be the most prestigious school in the country and to offer the best educational programme through a Russion and an IB (International Baccalaureate) curriculum. Students’ personal development is paramount, with the school adopting a holistic approach. It is a true learning environment that provides scope for a range of disciplines, areas of interest and recreational opportunities to foster children’s development. This aim is supported by the campus facilities and functions.
Address: zimenkovskaya street, sosenskoye settlement, moscow, russia.
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