In a sense, historic Warsaw doesn't exist. Up to 90 per cent of the city was destroyed by Hitler, in retaliation for the Warsaw Uprising. The Warsaw Uprising was a popular revolt against Nazi occupation, where over 200,000 civilians lost their lives. This tragic event is commemorated with a monument, and the Museum of Warsaw Uprising, located next to the hotel.
Despite the city's almost total destruction, Warsaw was impressively quickly rebuilt from the rubble, in a recreation of its former baroque splendor. Warsaw's skyline was now dominated by the imposing Palace of Culture and Science, Stalin's gift to the nation. Still the tallest building in Poland, with the highest clock tower in the world, the Warsaw views from the 30th floor are breathtaking. The reconstruction of the Old Town is deservedly a UNESCO World Heritage site, especially the Royal Castle. The Old Town Square is charming, and a must-see. The Royal Way is Warsaw's grand thoroughfare, running past the Chopin museum to Wilanow. In summer you can hear Chopin concerts in Lazienki Park. Wilanow is the former residence of Polish kings and an authentic Baroque Palace. This is a beautiful building, with an impressive poster art collection and gardens. Today Warsaw is the city where tradition meets modernity, where historical monuments and modern architecture coexist in every street. The Palace of Culture and Science is surrounded by modern and glittering skyscrapers, making Warsaw one of the tallest European capitals. With 82 parks occupying almost 10% of the city, hundreds of monuments and historical buildings are just waiting to be explored with the city's extensive public transportation system.
Warsaw has become an essential destination for Jewish tourists looking for their roots, culture and history. Untouched by the Reformation, Poland became known as a "heretic's paradise", where unorthodox religious views were welcome. Poland became the center of the Jewish diaspora, with Warsaw's Jewish population the largest in Europe. Tragically this ended when Hitler invaded Poland, herding the Jewish population into the Warsaw ghetto, where thousands who escaped deportation to the death camps died of starvation and disease. Today Warsaw's Jewish population are having something of a renaissance, with festivals of Jewish culture and literature, and a Museum of the History of Polish Jews being built in 2011. A visit to the Old Jewish Quarter is a must for anyone visiting Warsaw. While the district may have become a derelict ghetto during the Second World War, the Quarter has since proudly reclaimed its Jewish heritage with a synagogue, memorial, institute and theatre. The Jewish Cemetery is a haunting memorial of the Jewish population who have lived and died in the city. The Path of Remembrance leads from the Monument to the Ghetto Heroes, who revolted against Nazi occupation in 1943, to the Umschlagplatz, where trains deported Jewish citizens to Treblinka. The Nozyk Synagogue was the only synagogue to survive Hitler's destruction of Warsaw, and is still used by the faithful today.
4.5 hours driving time, 350 KM North
From Gryzbowska Street, turn right into Towarowa Str. Cross the roundabout and go straight on Okopowa Str until the next roundabout, and leave it on 3rd exit into Popieluszki Str. On the 3rd traffic light turn left into Marymoncka Str. and continue straight along - you are on Route E77 - 7 to Gdansk. You will pass the main cities: Plonsk, Mlawa, Ostroda and Elbag.
4.5 hours driving time, 350 KM North
From Grzybowska Str. turn left into Towarowa and continue straight until the ''Zawiszy'' roundabout. Take 2nd exit and you are on Grojecka Str., then Aleja Krakowska. Travel straight along on Route E77. You will pass the main cities: Radom, Skarzysko - Kamienna, Kielce, Jedrzejow, Miechow.
4.5 hours driving time, 350 KM SouthWest
From Grzybowska Str. turn left into Towarowa and continue straight until the ''Zawiszy'' roundabout. Take 2nd exit and you are on Grojecka Str., then Aleja Krakowska. At the Janki suburb turn right into Route E - 67 and travel straight along. You will pass the main cities: Rawa Mazowieka, Tomasow Mazowiecki, Piotrkow Tybunalski, Belchatow.
4 hours driving time, 310 KM West
From Grzybowska Street turn left into Towarowa Street and on the nearest roundabout turn right. Go straight along Kasprzaka and then Wolska Street, then Polczynska - this is Route E -30 to Poznan. You will pass the main cities: Kutno, Konin.