Gdynia, a  city where You always hear the seagulls singing

From all the Tricity cities, Gdynia is the one where tradition permeates with modernity, fot.

At the beginning of XX c. it was still a fisherman village. It was given a city law nearly one hundred years age, in 1926. Since then is one of the most interesting example of a deliberate example of a city planning, an example for the businessman and modernity lovers. This is Gdynia, he city from the sea and dreams, where You can hear the seagulls singing.

Gdynia was designed for a specific purpose. Due to the fact, that after WWI Gdansk became part of the Free City of Gdansk and the Second Polish Republic needed the access to the sea and the modern port, it was decided to develop Gdynia.

The city started the impressive development and what is more important it lasts till today. Gdynia is the seat of many modern companies and international corporations. In a big and modern building in Redlowo, there is a Pomeranian Technological and Science Park, where the new start up can develop.

In Gdynia, there is second, largest re-loading port. This is the place, where now ferries to Scandinavia leave and 100 years ago, where famous transatlantic ships (including, sorely missed passenger ship “Batory”) took people to USA and Canada.

Stories of those who decided to leave the country became the inspiration to open a new, unique Museum of Emigration. It is situated in a former Sea Station at the French Embankment.

Museum of Emigration   is situated in a former Sea Station at the French Embankment. Fot.

The modernism passionate will love the central part of Gdynia. Gdynia architecture in an example how 100 years ago new, modern cities were built, combining the classics with the new. It is worth paying attention to the houses in a centre as well as bigger buildings. For example a market hall complex, built in 30ties last century. Every day, even during the past, dark history days, this place was always full off life. You could buy everything here – from the vegetables and fruits brought to the jeans by the sailors from USA, perfumes from China or Persian carpets. The market halls were the symbols of modernity and openminded Gdynia, where You could meet “the whole world”. The complex of Gdynia Market Halls, still full of life, was registered on the list of stationary monuments.

Gdynia's modernism trail. The A. Ogończyk – Bloch and L. Mazalon Tenement House

Gdynia is a city where culture is very important. The younger European generation for sure recalls one of the biggest musical festivals – Open’er Festival. Stars like: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Depeche Mode, Pearl Jam, Rihanna, Coldplay or Radiohead played there. Gdynia is also the capital of Polish film business. Every September, all famous Polish film stars come to Gdynia for the Polish Film Festival. There are also Film Centre and the Film School in Gdynia. Close by there is a Musical Theatre with the name of Danuta Baduszkowa, famous from the most spectacular musicals.

Moby on Opener, fot.

If We want to admire this sea city, the port, the shipyard, the beach and the sea boulevard take a funicular to the Stone Hill. There is a picturesque city panorama from there. Those who prefer a stroll along the beach, inhaling fresh, sea air, we recommend going to Orlowo. Walking down the Orlowo pier it is worth entering the nearby Tawerna to try fresh fish and climb up the cliff, from where there is a view to the Baltic Bay, Sopot and Gdansk.

The Gdynia Modernism Route

The Gdynia Modernism Route

     The name “modernism” itself implies modernity. So it is no surprise that Gdynia, being the city established and designed in the inter-war period, has many Modernist objects, which give the place a special style.  
The main assumption of Modernism in architecture is the functionality of the erected objects and the reflection of functionality both in the interior design and the exterior looks of buildings. Modernism assumed a full deviation from any previous styles. The style became particularly popular in Europe during the times when around Gdynia harbour a city started to develop. The style was very convenient for the assumed modern character of Gdyna but also through its simplicity and functionality it could be used where the city was created almost from scratch. Assuming the Modernism guidelines and implementing them in designing particular buildings in Gdynia the architects did not want to keep strictly to the European standards. Quite contrary, they wanted to enrich the simple and straight Modernistic rules with various references to the harbour and the maritime character of the city, thus creating a new style: Gdynia Modernism

Examples of this style can be observed all over the town, both in monumental public-use objects and in residential houses, from the main street houses to the private family houses. The typical features of Gdynia modernistic developments are the typical elements in the buildings which are similar to the ones on ships often with ship-like masts for flags. The facades are usually white. European modernism is traced in the rhythmical plan of windows, glassy ground floors with commercial space, simple and cheap construction (usually in the form of concrete lattice work) and clean stone facades.

The modern city and its modern white houses facing the sea almost like ships, are typical signs of the "sea town" style, depicting the dreams of a harbour, fleet and sailors which came true, and is worth a closer look.