The Jinonický Dvůr premises of the CREDITAS Real Estate company is opening its doors to new residents
In the spring, the CREDITAS Real Estate company carried out the final inspection of the luxury area Jinonický Dvůr after three years of a demanding reconstruction. The first residents are now moving into the former castle. Read more in the current issue of the Forbes magazine.
Previously, there was the estate of the house of Schwarzenberg, then a state farm, and in the recent past, a part of the Jinonický Castle was used as offices, with another part left empty and gradually falling into disrepair. But now new residents will be able to move into the castle. And they can expect real castle living.
The CREDITAS Real Estate company, belonging to the CREDITAS Group, owned by the thirtieth richest Czech, Pavel Hubáček, has completed and inspected the demanding reconstruction of the Jinonický Castle for premium housing as a part of the next stage of the Jinonický Dvůr Project. “It is a very specific project. Thanks to its long history and careful reconstruction, it stands out from typical residential development and represents a unique dwelling for demanding clients,” says the director of CREDITAS Real Estate Jiří Vajner.
In close cooperation with preservationists, 51 new flats and six commercial spaces were created in the historical area in shell and core condition. The total amount of the investment reached half a billion crowns. “The construction was full of surprises, as is usually the case with cultural sights and historical objects,” describes Jan Kukla, project manager of CREDITAS Real Estate, as we walk around the newly completed premises, where the last details are being put in tune.
One of the unanticipated situations that both the developer and the construction companies had to deal with was the remains of the original medieval fortress found during an archaeological survey under the courtyard. Its location is revealed by the stone lining of a part of the courtyard. For that reason, the garages, which were originally supposed to be completely underground, had to be raised, but in order not to disrupt the medieval foundations, they now partially protrude above the surface, where they form an elevated part of the courtyard.
“Before the Velvet Revolution, not much was done here, other than causing damage. We continuously discovered what mistakes had been made here from a preservationists’ point of view, and we tried to remedy some of them,” describes Kukla. Many original historical elements remained in the area and had to be carefully restored. Work was often required that only a few companies and craftsmen in the country can do. “We restored, for example, the original sundial or the courtyard gallery. There are also several restored historical doors. That’s because CREDITAS has a soft spot for the castle,” explains Kukla.
Years ago, the castle was the headquarters of V-Invest, which the CREDITAS Group took full ownership of at the end of the last year and rebranded it as CREDITAS Real Estate. There are also historical elements in the flats, which are mainly dominated by attic duplexes or, on the contrary, ground-floor units with front gardens. “People were the most interested in those. I don’t know any other development project that offers flats with vaulted ceilings and front gardens at the same time,” says Kukla with pride in his voice.
While the flats on the upper floors and duplexes with exposed historic trusses have a more modern style with wooden floors, smooth doors and glazed skylights, the ground-floor units have vaulted ceilings, classic parquet floors and more ornate doors and windows. They thus evoke living in a castle even more. At the same time, various original niches remained in the flats, which were often revealed only after the removal of the walls added during the previous regime. Moreover, the former chimneys serve as shafts for wiring or air conditioning.
The layout of the flats is varied. This is mainly due to the fact that the developer could not demolish the interiors in this cultural site and adapt them to usual housing needs. For example, access corridors or staircases had to be created in modern glass extensions. “It is not facadeism, when only the facade remains, and the rest of the house is completely demolished. We had to work with what our ancestors built here,” explains Kukla.
Several flat units are still available in the project, but over half of the flats have already been sold. According to Kukla, after the waiting period, the revival of the market is already visible again, and interested parties are gradually coming forward. Flat prices range from ten to twenty-five million Czech crowns. The entire reconstruction was designed by the MS Architekti Studio.
The castle is adjacent to other parts of the Jinonický Dvůr Project, which includes already standing apartment buildings and villa-houses which CREDITAS Real Estate, at that time still known as V-Invest, built in previous years. At the same time, financier and billionaire Pavel Hubáček intends to continue massive investments in real estate through CREDITAS Real Estate. During the next decade, the development company plans to build flats for approximately 27 billion crowns. Of the planned 5,500 housing units in several projects throughout the country, approximately one fifth (for five billion crowns) should be used for rental housing.
The article was published on the Forbes.cz website. Author: Martin Bajtler.