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V. Putvinskio g. 56, Kaunas

The nunciature was the first and probably only building designed specifically for a legation. The Vatican’s envoy would have enjoyed a good atmosphere here not only for representing and working but also for living and relaxing. The first storey had a chancellery, an office room, a parlour, a dining room, and a “winter garden” (orangery), separated by sliding doors that could be pushed together; but when they were pulled apart the result was a large hall well-suited for festive occasions. The second storey had sleeping rooms, another office, and a chapel. All rooms were united by a central hall with a stairway. Such a building structure, reflected in the exterior by a free, asymmetric composition of volumes, was a new step in architecture. A big advantage of this edifice was that it fit so organically into its environment, the Žaliakalnis slope: next to the villa the architect envisaged terraces, little walls, stairs and a fence. In the context of laws mandating the building of houses in a continuous line along the street, an exception was made for letting a nuncio’s residence freely sprawl out on a spacious lot. However, because of internal political troubles the nuncio did not take up residence here. In 1932 the building was turned into a children’s hospital. Year: 1931. Style: Modernism. Architect Vytautas Landsbergis-Žemkalnis.

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