Has the Hotel Cosmos Hotel in Chisinau gone for good? There’s a dying that if you say you don’t believe in fairies one does. I learned this from ET and Drew Barrymore before she banged Tom Green, who I have met by the way.
Why the fairy adage? I kind of feel like overtime someone says the Soviet Union does not exist a piece of it dies, lately Soviet hotels have been dropping like flies.
The Hotel Aist Tiraspol
The Hotel Aist was such a love of mine that I cannot almost bear to say it, but it has closed. This was the old Intourist hotel of the CCCP, if you know of KITC you will get the picture.
To learn about In Intourist click here
To learn about KITC click here
Anyhow a shit hotel, but really Soviet and where we would stay when we were in Tiraspol, although not when I lived there, which you can read about here.
What does this have to do with the Hotel Cosmos in Chisinau? Nothing except they are close to each other, both Soviet and I found out in the same month about their demise.
What was the the Hotel Cosmos Chisinau?
A “high-end” Soviet hotel during Soviet times located next to the train station in Kishinev (the alternate spelling of Chisinau). It was where big wigs would stay when they were in town, but the counter-revolution came and it had to adapt.
High end hotels came into Moldova, but the old-soviet ones etched on with some capitalist characteristics, in the case of the Cosmos these were largely two fold. Ironically the two main capitalist fixtures where being able to gamble and freelance hookers in the lobby. If ever there was a LOL, this was a LOL.
The Hotel Cosmos Clientele
In the post-USSR times this meant that you would get the cheap bastards in the Hotel Cosmos, often traveling businessmen of a lower stature, or people like the Street Food Guy. I once spent a week here getting drunk next door every day at London Steak House before finally moving to Tiraspol.
But it was the bar and lobby that saw all of the action, usually very entertaining of a nighttime. I heard an anecdotal tale from a friend (really was not me) of meeting a lady of the night here who had been practicing he oldest profession since the days of Gorbachev. He took particular delight in this.
To read about Gorbachev taking part in a Pizza Hut add click here.
And the rooms at the Hotel Cosmos?
Dark, dank, small, but with proper Soviet kitsch, yes it got cold in winter, but hey who cares. They did though usually have some degree of hot water which gave them the trunk card on the Hotel Aist at least.
Breakfast and the TV Room
Breakfast at the hotel was technically at least continental, but in reality consisted of eggs, yogurt, milk and stale bread. The one bright spot though was that on your way to breakfast you were greeted by a room that had been weirdly decorated with old Soviet era TV’s. Why? No one knows, but it was a thing.
The Hotel Cosmos Chisinau is now closed
Transnistria National Day is now coming up and we had a tour planned, the Cosmos was not to be found in the Al Gore invented internet and according to our local partners had closed, for good, or for temporary and much like the Aist we do not know, but our hearts are filled with sadness regardless.
For something more cherrie read my guide to S-21 here.
The Hotel Cosmos we miss you, please come back