The Hermenau Villa
The Hermenau Villa is an architectural gem and the only reminder of Olsztyn’s well-known family of the same name. The fate of the Hermenau family is woven extremely harmoniously into one century of the city’s history. Its members accompanied Olsztyn in the city's successes, and did not leave it in its tragedies.
This charming building itself was built in 1900-1902, but the streak of luck of the family lasted already for at least half a century. As holders of numerous buildings, and brick factories, a brewery and mills, the family were considered a manufacturer's model of successful people. Conrad Hermenau built this eclectic, three-storey villa on the Łyna River (the course of the river was later slightly modified in the “Gierek” times). A trained eye will see unique details like the coloured, Dutch tilling or rich ornamentation of the wooden balcony.
The villa is the only one in Olsztyn and one of the few in the region with peaks of a beam construction. Wolfgang Hermenau was the last owner of the building and the family business. He died near the villa as a member of the Volkssturm, repelling the Red Army attacks in January 1945. After the war, the building housed a kindergarten, then a Scout House, and since 1994 it seats the Day Centre for Children called “Arka”.