Sheremetev Palace (a.k.a Fountain House)
The Sheremetev (Sheremetiev) Palace at 34 Fontanka Embankment is a magnificent Baroque style building designed by Savva Chevakinsky and Fyodor Argunov in the mid 18th century. The original palace was built in 1712 by Field Marshal Boris Sheremetev. The Sheremetevs are a very old family which probably came from Prussia. 15th and 16th century coins of the town of Danzig bear the same symbols as the Sheremetev's coat-of-arms. Field Marshal Boris Sheremetev was granted the title of count by Peter the Great. The Tsar also presented him with a large plot of land on the bank of the Fontanka, where he built a single-story wooden building. A second story was added in the early 1740s. Chevakinsky built the two-story stone palace for Peter Sheremetev, the field marshal's youngest son, known for his love of arts and extravagant living. A large park with a grotto, Hermitage pavilion and Chinese summerhouse was laid out behind the palace. The Sheremetievs lived in the palace until 1917, altering the interiors from time to time.
It is perhaps better known as the Fountain House (Fontanniy dom) because of the many fountains, fed by the river, which once played in its grounds. The poet Anna Akhmatova lived for a number of years in a section of the palace.