Facts About Tugendhat Villa In Brno: A UNESCO World Heritage Site | Kidadl


Facts About Tugendhat Villa In Brno: A UNESCO World Heritage Site

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If you're a fan of architecture, then Tugendhat Villa in Brno is worth visiting.

This UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the most important examples of modernist architecture in Europe. It was designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and completed in 1930.

The construction of this beautiful and unique piece of architecture was commissioned by Fritz Tugendhat and his wife Greta, the influential and wealthy Tugendhat family members. Its ingenious use of industrial building materials and space has gained the building the worldwide fame that it enjoys today. Because of its architectural brilliance, UNESCO incorporated it into their World Heritage Site list in 2001.

This article will take a closer look at Tugendhat Villa, its history, and its restoration to return it to its former glory. We'll also explore why it was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Geographic Location

This brilliant creation of the German architect Ludwig Mies has always been a favorite place for tourists visiting the Czech Republic. So, here is all the information about its geographic location that you should know if you are also planning to visit this heritage site.

This beautiful villa is located in the south of South Moravia, in the district of Černá Pole, Brno. To be more precise, here is the official address: Černopolní 45, 613 00 Brno. However, no specific transport stop is dedicated to this site. There are many tram and bus stops nearby that you can use to reach the place.

Otherwise, you can also take tram 9 from the main railway station to reach the Tomanova stop. Then go along Tomanova street, and before long, you will reach the destination. Apart from this villa, there are also some other famous places you can visit in Brno; one example would be Cafe Era, designed by Jozef Kranz.

History And Cultural Significance

Tugendhat Villa was built between 1928 and 1930 for Fritz Tugendhat and his wife, Greta Tugendhat. The villa is located in the city of Brno in the Czech Republic and was built by one of the most influential architects of the 20th century, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.

The construction company called Artur and Moritz Eisler took the contract of building this villa and finished the job only in 14 months. The Tugendhat family, including Fritz, Greta, and their children, who commissioned the construction of this villa, lived here for only eight years. In 1938, when Czechoslovakia was dismembered due to the Munich Agreement, the Tugendhat's fled the country and went to Switzerland. They lived there for a long time, except for the war period when they went to Venezuela, but they never came back to their villa again.

During World War II, the villa had a rough time. At first, it was confiscated by Gestapo in 1939 and was used as an office and an apartment. This led to certain interior modifications and the disappearance of certain integral pieces of the interior. Later, in 1942, the villa was also used as an office by Messerschmitt's airplane manufacturing company.

When the city of Brno was liberated in 1945, the building became a quarter for a Soviet military unit. It is said that the military unit caused considerable damage to the white linoleum floor of the villa and also used the building as horse stables. Although, there is no evidence that corroborates the latter accusation. However, the villa's remaining furniture was indeed used as firewood.

Tugendhat Villa is one of the most important heritage sites in the Czech Republic.


As we have already learned much about its history, it is time to lay our eyes on some intriguing facts related to the design of this outstanding piece of modern architecture.

Facing the southwest, this three-story villa stands on a slope. The first floor of this building consists of the main entrance, a lovely passage that goes to the terrace, the entrance hall, and rooms for children, parents, and the nanny. You will find appropriate facilities in these rooms.

During its construction, the architect used his design principle of 'less is more' and emphasized more on the functional amenities; this creative vision led him to create one of the finest examples of early functionalist architecture.

The revolutionary iron framework deployed by the architect also allowed him to dispense with supporting walls. In addition to that, his unique way of designing the interior of the building was intended to achieve a feeling of light and space. Mies also used a sheet of plate glass as a wall in this building that slides down into the basement in a similar way that the window glasses do in an automobile.

Visitors will not find any decorative item or painting in the villa; instead, the interior is made of naturally patterned materials like rare tropical woods and onyx. It gives the villa a beautiful essence that is rare in traditional architecture. For example, the wall made of onyx has a translucent texture and changes its appearance when the sun goes down and evening approaches. More interestingly, the aim of the architect was to make this natural scenario an integral part of the interior of his building.

Apart from all these, the construction of the building required unusual methods, luxurious materials, and highly modern technology for ventilation and heating, and all of them were very expensive. The architect also used an ultra-modern air-conditioning system and built a mechanism into the wall that regulates the glass facade's functioning.

The villa possesses multiple storage spaces and has an unusually open and large floor, both of which make the whole architecture even more unique compared to the conventional family homes. Also, Mies built a service area using the lower-ground space of the villa.

World Heritage Site

Tugendhat Villa is not just a beautiful building, but it also has much cultural importance and is one of the most important pieces of modernist architecture. It was an excellent decision on UNESCO's part to include it into their World Heritage Site list.

The World Heritage Site status was bestowed upon Tugendhat Villa in 2001. This site was selected based on the distinctions that Ludwig Mies van der Rohe used some radical new concepts of the Modernist Movement in the construction of this building, and the villa played an important role in the acceptance and diffusion of this new architectural form revolutionized by the Modernist Movement of the '20s.

Other Miscellaneous Facts

After covering all the sections, there are still some things that we feel you should know about this work of International style architecture.

The initiative for preserving this villa started in 1993 with the formation of the Friends of Tugendhat and Villa Tugendhat Fund. Initially, the city received $15,000 from Samuel H. Kress European Preservation Program for research purposes. Later, organizations like the Robert Wilson Foundation and the International Music and Art Foundation came forward and donated $100,000 each to facilitate the preservation program.

The villa went through a general restoration between 2010 and 2012. As a result, the building and the adjacent garden regained their original appearance. The preserved original furniture was moved back to the villa, and replicas of the ones that were lost were then added to the interior.

Apart from that, administered by the city of Brno, the villa has been open as a museum to the public since 1994.


Q: Why was the Villa Tugendhat built?

A: The villa was built as a residential building for Greta and Fritz Tugendhat.

Q: When was Tugendhat Villa built?

A: The construction of Tugendhat Villa started in 1928 and finished in 1930; it was done by a construction company called Artur and Moritz Eisler.

Q: Where does the name Tugendhat come from?

A: Tugendhat is the name of an influential and wealthy Jewish Family, two of whose members commissioned the construction of this villa.

Q: Who built Tugendhat Villa?

A: The German architects Lilly Reich and Ludwig Mies designed the building, and the construction work was done by the Artur and Moritz Eisler construction company.

Q: What country is Tugendhat Villa located in?

A: This unique piece of modern architecture is situated in the Czech Republic.

Q: What is the significance of Tugendhat Villa?

A: The villa contributed much to the worldwide acceptance and diffusion of Modernist architecture.

Q: When and why was the Tugendhat Villa declared a World Heritage Site?

A: It was declared a World Heritage Site in 2001 for triumphantly using the radical concepts of the Modernist Movement of the '20s.

Written By
Prasenjit Das

<p>Having obtained a Bachelor's degree in English language and literature from West Bengal State University - Barrackpore Rastraguru Surendranath College, followed by a Master's degree in English language and literature from Calcutta University, Prasenjit has several years of experience as a content writer, Prasenjit has mastered the art of producing cohesive and coherent copy. To further refine his skills and continuously challenge his creativity, Prasenjit successfully completed the "Introduction to Creative Writing Course" offered by British Council. Outside of his professional pursuits, Prasenjit finds inspiration in engaging in various creative activities, including writing poetry.</p>

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