Balconies, bay windows, towers, balustrades, loggias framed by columns, wide perrons and moulding – so much, that the decorating elements, adorned with flourishes, start to become blurred. The splendid villas in the Seaside Resorts of Ahlbeck, Heringsdorf and Bansin are worldwide unique. Nowhere else there are so many of them and so different one from another. They show the taste and the wealth of their builders, they had to compete with each other, and nowadays they’re immeasurable in their nobility.
Not a single house is identical to another. And nevertheless these buildings are being classified as belonging to the Bäderarchitektur (Seaside Resorts’s architecture). They were built as summer residences at the end of the 19th and at the beginning of the 20th century, and they seem to be small children of the big houses in the Berlin villas quarters like Grunewald, Wannsee or Lichterfelde. The Berlin in-people of that time were really crazy about the Baltic Sea. If someone cared about his reputation, he had to build a villa in one of the three seaside resorts. Preferably directly on the promenade, surrounded by a sprawling park landscape. The money played no role. People wanted to show what they could afford. The more chick, the better. Big saloon, billiard room, sunroom, fireplace room, high-grade bathrooms next to the boudoir, and naturally a terrace with sea view: everybody built his dream residency according to his own style.
The measure of all things was one’s own taste. Some people liked temples from the antiquity with their massive columns and gables. Other people liked houses from the Black Forest, so they decorated their houses with many wooden ornaments or built even the whole houses out of wood.
Some people were dreaming about fairytale castles with towers and bay windows, while for others it was enough to have their own Berlin house in miniature for the summer refreshment. There was no taboo. People helped themselves with different style elements from the renaissance, the baroque, the period of promoterism and from the Art Nouveau.
That’s how a ragbag of houses of different styles came into being in just a few decades. The only reason why they are stapled to each other and they still fascinate the passers-by is the love of splendour of their owners and the insight that they give with that into their luxurious lifestyle.