Time flies and with it, it brings many changes. Everything, from the personality and lifestyle of an individual to the environment and the environment, is subject to a transformation different from that previously experienced or witnessed. It often feels great to reconnect with your past, but have you ever wondered what it would be like to be part of the past that you’ve never lived? Without a doubt, it will be an unforgettable experience especially for those who love to delve into the history.
Many places with historical and architectural significance have been restored for the world to see, but there are only a few for people to live. Yes, they have been changed to hotels, bars or libraries, etc., to accommodate humans in a better way. However, they do not stop filling the air with a feeling of greatness that can only be felt in such strange places.
Some architects and designers have had the privilege of working in churches that have lasted for decades. They have managed to achieve a perfect balance by keeping history alive with a touch of modernity through innovative solutions. It would not be false to say that it is the work of geniuses. The metamorphosis of these ancient churches into the state of the art is incredible.
01. Stanbrook Abbey
The building is located near Malvern Hills in the city of Worcestershire. The foundations of this abbey were placed in 1625 by Cresacre More, although it was not until 1871 that the building was completed. Initially, it was a home for Benedictine nuns who escaped oppression at the hands of enemies during the French Revolution. They exercised their religion here for more than a century, leaving the abbey in 2009 to settle in a new home based in North Yorkshire.
Extending over 21 acres of land, the abbey is extremely spacious, with large grounds and luxurious chambers. It is obvious that it seems that a lot of work has been devoted to the design and construction of the building. It has a small private retreat house attached known as St. Mary’s. In addition, the first private printing company in England was established here, which has been operating to this day. In addition to the gothic views, the interior of the abbey is exquisitely furnished.
It is now owned by Clarenco LLP Company, which has transformed the abbey into a luxury hotel and has retreated with a personal chapel. The corridors are reserved for the celebration of important events, mainly weddings with additional canopies on the premises.
02. House of the Church of San Nicolás
Unlike Stanbrook Abbey, this church consumes a small area in the city of Kyloe. Its history dates back to the late 1100s and is perhaps one of the oldest places of worship in England. The architects of today conclude that the building, which covers 1 acre of land, is a work of the Romans. It was rebuilt in 1792, but at the beginning of 1800 the building was completely abandoned, so its state deteriorated.
At the end of 1800, the building was bought by a couple who decided to renovate the interior of the building. It was brought into domestic use with five bedrooms, two bathrooms, two kitchens, two reception rooms and a huge living room. It basically consists of two internally connected cottages that include a mutual church. The exterior, however, remained as original and the small cemetery in the facilities of the plot was not touched either. However, a corridor was built in the north. The building is currently for sale.
03. Hotel Martin’s Patershof
Formerly known as the Church of Frior Minor, this property in Belgium is only a few hundred years old. The building was rebuilt after the French Revolution, in neo-Gothic style. It was renovated again after World War II and continued to be a place of worship for Christians until the late 1990s when it was sold. In 1999, he had assumed the role of a residential area with gardens.
In 2006, Martin’s Hotels bought the place and transformed it into a 4-star hotel with a luxurious interior. The hotel is one of its types with vaulted ceilings and small towers. The rooms show the high level of comfort and luxury that the hotel has to offer. It has a suite in the attic in the upper dome and some rooms have private jacuzzis. The atmosphere is believed to be friendly and the surroundings extremely pleasant for those seeking maximum relaxation during the holidays.
This 15th century monastery is located in Maastricht. The church was famous among the population of Maastricht, since it not only wrote, copied and bound books, but also developed communities that helped the sick, poor and needy of the city. But during the French Revolution it began to store ammunition and other military equipment and eventually lost its importance as a church. When the 19th century came to an end, the church was restored, but as a National Agricultural Research Station. Little by little, the building needed urgent repair, as it was rarely used. It temporarily became a church until the end of 2000, when it was decided that the historic place would become a luxury hotel for improvement. In addition, it was the only way to keep the history of the church alive. Therefore, the architecture that is an example of Gothic design, which was popular during the medieval era, was not modified.
05. Church Brew Works, Pittsburgh
Previously, a house of worship, a school and a convent, built in 1992, Church Brew Works is located in the Pittsburgh suburb of scenic Lawrenceville. It has the most unusual characteristics that would be difficult to replicate today. The vaulted ceilings, the huge central tower, the European-style stained-glass windows and the intricate design inspired by the architecture of northern Italy are a masterpiece.
It was closed in 1993 and reopened in 1996. During the three years it was closed, it underwent an extensive renovation and became a beer pub offering a variety on the menu. The interior was designed with great care and a lot of money was spent to ensure it looks as impressive as its surroundings. It soon gained popularity due to its unique perspective and the four distinctive beers elaborated in an excellent way that none of the other pubs can serve in the domain.
06. O’NeiII’s Pub in MusweII HiII
The 20th century Presbyterian church was a small one located on the corner of a road in Muswell Hill, England. Later it became an Irish-themed pub that goes by the name of O’Neill’s. Although it extends throughout the United Kingdom, the franchise itself is not exactly famous for its release of beers and food, nor does it boast of serving only the upper class. Still, it has garnered favorable reviews from the general public, probably because of the interesting place. This dark brown building is an exception due to the historical background related to it. Its exterior is very similar to what it was originally and only some changes have been made to the elements within the church. You can see that expensive wood was used for construction to make it look impressive. To enhance the beauty and atmosphere of the pub, music activities are encouraged regularly.
07. SeIexyzDominicanen Bookstore
You may have found many libraries built in the world today that are simply impressive. SelexyzDominicanen is one of them, but its roots were planted 800 years ago as a church. This Catholic church is located in the city of Maastricht, in the Netherlands, and is one of the greatest that the world has ever seen. It went through many phases, from a church to a warehouse and then into a bicycle shed.
Finally, it was designed in a bookstore by the same architect who worked at the Kruisherenhotel. It is, without a doubt, a perfect place for those who have something for both books and architecture. The vaulted ceilings speak of the importance of the place, keeping its history alive. Three floors of shelves with a capacity of 50,000 copies have been added with stairs and elevators. The library attracts 700,000 customers per year. Different events take place in the spacious library such as workshops, book presentations, debates, concerts and interviews.
08. Il Gattopardo
His name is taken from a famous Italian novel, ‘The Leopard’. It used to be an old chapel in Milan, but it became a club in 2001. Although it does not attract a large number of people, it is a place of entertainment famous among the young elite of Milan because of its environment that specifically serves those who want experience a wild party. The drinks are expensive and nothing can beat the party that lasts all night of the day. However, instead of disco lights, there is a giant chandelier that was part of the original interior of the church. It is equipped to move up and down according to the rhythm of the music. The architecture is fascinating giving this club a unique look. Although it seems mature, the crowd is not. This is definitely not the place for those looking for a quiet drink in the evening.
09. Church Bar and Restaurant, DubIin
Built in the early 18th century, the place was a church known as Santa Maria located in Ireland. It was closed in 1964 and was not used for several years until 1997, when it became legally owned by John Keating. He spent seven years to repair and renovate the place. However, some of the features such as the organ and the stained glass windows were simply polished. Then it was reopened in 2005 under the name of John M. Keating’s Bar. Soon, it became the pride of Dublin. In 2007, the place was sold to new owners. They are credited for adding a cafeteria, a nightclub and a barbecue area on the terrace. Now it works under the name of ‘The Church Bar and Restaurant’. Approximately 600,000 people dine here attracted by the art, history and luxury for which the place is famous. The place was recognized at the Dublin City Neighborhood Awards 2006, receiving an award in the Best Old Building category.
10. LimeIight MarketpIace
Once an episcopal church established in 1844, it covers an area of 25,000 square feet. It is located on Avenida de las Américas on West 20th Street. It was designed by the architect Richard Upjohn. The church underwent many transformations. It was bought by a drug rehab house but due to financial problems it was sold to Gatien in 1982. This Gothic and reddish-stone building eventually became a disco and rock club under the famous club franchise known as “The Limelight” . Unfortunately in 1996 it was closed when the media brought to light the issue of drug trafficking in the place. It has reopened from time to time since then. In 2003, it was renamed ‘Avalon’ but it was reopened correctly in 2007. The place functioned as a market until 2014 when the idea was proposed to turn it into a departure from a famous Gym chain.