In 1965 the old part of the town of Sozopol was declared as an architectural and historical reserve. There are more than eighty preserved houses in this territory, built in a characteristic style for 19th century Revival architecture. The buildings exist in a densely built-up settlement formation, separated by narrow cobbled streets and “rimni” (narrow spaces between houses).
The residential architecture, typical of Sozopol, is similar to the houses from other coastal settlements around and south of the Bay of Burgas. The architectural style, based on a simplified plan, facades with oriel and wooden paneling on the second floor, is directly related to the used building materials – stone, wood and mudbrick.
The Black Sea residential architecture is probably influenced by the traditions of the Strandzha house. The three-dimensional solution of the buildings includes a high ground floor – used for warehouse and domestic purposes, which corresponds directly to the street or yard. Wine barrels, food stocks, agricultural and fishing equipment are usually stored here. In some cases, this rooms are used for shops or craft workshops.
The second – residential floor is projecting as an oriel above the ground floor. In this way the building grows in height and width, acquiring a dynamic and expressive silhouette. Usually the residential floor is made of lightweight wooden construction and mudbrick masonry. The wooden lining protects the mudbrick from destruction and has thermal insulation function. A wooden staircase leads to the second floor. Its plan includes a central representative room – a lounge, around which the bedrooms are located. In most cases, a small wooden balcony is built to the lounge or one of the rooms. The residential floor is illuminated by relatively narrow window openings, closed from the outside with wooden shutters.
The furniture is simple and consists of cabinets, dressers, chests, repast (sofra), beds and etc. The north rooms are heated by fireplaces with an external chimney or brazier. The ceiling is on a joist, lined with wood or shaped with thin, covered with lime, laths – the so-called “caratavan”. The roof structure, depending on the volume of the building, is two- or four-sided, lined with wood and covered with convex tiles of the so-called Turkish type.
House of Anna Trendafilova
The “House of Anna Trendafilova” is the center of one of the most characteristic Revival ensembles in the northwestern part of Old Sozopol. It was declared a cultural monument of national importance and largely reflected the richness and aesthetics of Bulgarian Revival architecture from the beginning of the 19th century.
The ground floor is built in massive stone construction, to the west with significantly higher walls due to the natural slope of the terrain. The facades on the second floor are covered with wide planks and narrow logs, which emphasize the visual perception and plastic effect of the most representative and ornate house in Sozopol. Wide vertical planks, shaped like pilasters with bases and capitals, limit the individual parts of the facade panels, and somewhere additional columns divide them into separate decorative panels. On the east facade there is an overhang in triangle pediment in a stylized sun. Because of this detail, the building is known as the “House with the Sun”. In its interior there are preserved carved ceilings, decorative grilles and cabinets.
“Laskaridis House”, an architectural monument of culture, was built in the 19th century AD. It is located on Cyril and Methodius Street in the central part of the peninsula, forming an independent insula with its yard. The building is two-storeyed with a stone cellar and a flat residential floor. The basement has an entrance to the west corner with a double winged wooden gate, above which is built-in an antique cornice. The most characteristic feature of the house is the southwestern facade where the floor comes out 2 m. and is supported by 4 carved wooden pillars.
The Laskadidis family, owners of pound nets, fish traders and boat builders, own the house with notary deed of 1876, issued by the administration of Sultan Abdul Hamid II. Foundations of an altar of the Christian basilica, 10th – 17th century AD, have been preserved in the yard.
House of Marieta Stefanova
Located at the beginning of the Old Town, lying on a medieval fortress wall. It was built in the first years of the 19th century. This is a large two-storeyed house with a high ground floor, built of solid stone masonry, lined with planks at the top. The residential floor consists of a lounge and several rooms. Interesting with its volumetric-façade layout, the building is one of the typical examples of the old Sozopol house.
House of Ana Batinioti
The building is located on Cyril and Methodius street. It is a two-storey house of relatively regular shape. The ground floor consists of stone masonry and simplified distribution. It is probably intended for animal husbandry and winter storage. A steep, one-step staircase leads to the half-floor and reaches the floor lounge. The residential floor has a characteristic layout with four symmetrically arranged rooms around the salon. The floor spaces hang over the ground floor and are supported by high curved consoles. The facades are lined with planks, as the difference in used material emphasizing the horizontals of the building, which ending with a shallow wooden canopy. The windows have shutters, there was a balcony on the southwestern facade, which was partitioned and shortened.