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CDT 'Smyk' Department Store

CDT 'Smyk' Department Store


Warsaw Poland

About Business

The Smyk Department Store was constructed in 1948-1952, designed by Zbigniew Ihnatowicz and Jerzy Romański, at the intersection of Bracka, Widok, Krucza, and Aleje Jerozolimskie, the building was designed in the late modernist style, however, the majority of new projects being built in Warsaw at the time were constructed in the politically favourable socialist realist style. The modernist design of Smyk made it a unique building at the time, yet also a very controversial one. Stalin believed that modernism was the architecture of capitalism and particularly disliked it as the favoured style in the decades just before the Second World War and thus its association with the Second Polish Republic. Unlike much of Warsaw's immediate pre-war architecture, the building is simple and functional, using no excess motifs or decorations to enhance its contemporary appearance. The current owner of the building is the "Centre for Development & Investments - Poland Sp. Zoo"ArchitectureThe building was designed in the popular pre-war 1920s style of modernism. Built as a detached structure formed from three separate blocks, the first, main, block forms the core of the store itself, with the main façade of the building fronting Aleje Jerozolimskie, the second construction operates as a food hall, whilst the third became a small office building attached to the rear of the main store via the restaurant section at ground floor. The main store was previously famous for its high-modernist windows, which were constructed using Polish oak frames and glass panes with an anti-reflective coating - a first for post-war era Polish architecture. The south elevation's main façade was specially designed to carry advertising and for most of its history was adorned with the store's trademark neon lights, arranged in the shape of spirals and supplemented with the vertically stacked letters "CDT", which stood for the store's original name 'Centralny Dom Towarowy' Central Department Store.

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