Nowa Huta was founded in 1949 as a separate town next to Kraków. It was built on land taken by the Communist government, and was intended to be the ideal “proletarian city”. It was built for Communist propaganda and settled mostly by steel workers. We decided to visit this town when we went to Kraków in February 2012.
Plac Centralny, or Central Square was intended to be the center of the visionary socialist city of Nowa Huta. We arrived here on public transport, and started looking for street names, so that we could find our way to Stylowa Restaurant. We squinted to read the street sign from the far end by the tram stop…im Ronalda…Regana….WHAT??!! We laughed when we realized that Plac Centralny was renamed after President Ronald Reagan!!
I later learned that there used to be a giant bronze statue of Lenin here, until 1989…when it was removed and later sold to Sweden!
Hmmm, I wonder if the Proletaryat Koncert advertised below is organized for the tourists? Perhaps a little capitalistic use of the Communist past?
We found Stylowa Restaurant not far from Plac Centralny. Apparently it has been here since 1956. In the communist heydey it was a high class (can I say that of a communist restaurant?) where the elite of Nowa Huta met: the party bigwigs, lawyers, engineers, and professors.
Stylowa Restaurant has been renovated over the years, but they have tried to keep it like it was in the 1970’s. Their website boasts: Socialist Realist interior is takeing our guests back to time of “Polish glory of socialism”…typo is theirs, not mine!
Nowa Huta and Stylowa Restaurant are definitely worth the visit…be sure to visit when you are in Kraków!