Hotel Tbilisi Tskaltubo
THE ABANDONED HOTEL IN GEORGIA
‘Hotel Tbilisi’ is one of the abandoned hotels in spa resort Tskaltubo in Georgia. The construction of the hotel finished in 1951. The big hotel was a popular place to stay. Today it is a home for refugees.
The seven-story high ‘Hotel Tbilisi’ was built close to the city center and within walking distance of the bathhouses. The city’s thermal waters are used to treat about 70 diseases. Baths were arranged directly at the spring, therefore no hotel in Tskaltubo had its own therapy baths.
The hotel was designed by Dr. V.K. Oltarzhevski and B.A. Sobolevski as an example of late Stalinist architecture. The building had a capacity of 732 beds. Major reconstruction works took place in 1963-65, when the back façade was attached. Starting in 1984, three years of necessary repairs started.
Tskaltubo was one of the most popular resorts in the former Soviet Union. So when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, the town of Tskaltubo was mostly abandoned. Meanwhile, the hotels and sanatoria were left empty to crumble and decay.
Today, this hotel is one of Tskaltubo’s disused buildings that houses refugees of the nearby Abkhazia region. The War in Abkhazia from 1992 to 1993 was fought between Georgian forces and Abkhaz separatists, the Russian armed forces and North Caucasian militants. Thereupon, about 9 thousand refugees were housed in Tskaltubo. It was supposed to be a temporary arrangement, but 25 years later, these makeshift apartments have become permanent homes for new generations of families. Today, the condition of the Hotel Tbilisi building is terrible. I visited the abandoned spa city in 2019.