Bykovo estate is an amazing "island" of Europe in the Moscow region. Bykovo village, where this ensemble is situated is not so easy to find, if you do not know the exact route.
The most memorable building here is the Church of the Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God. It was built in 1789 on the site of the wooden church of the Nativity of Christ. The church has an unusual history, with a mixture of royal intrigues, personal motives and a love story. It was built in honor of the beloved woman - Maria Alexandrovna Izmailova.
Maria Alexandrovna became the wife of Mikhail Izmailov, a favorite of Catherine II. With the accession of the empress on the throne, Izmailov became responsible for all construction in Moscow. Bykovo estate was granted to Izmailov by the empress and was later renamed to Maryino in honor of his wife.
Once Catherine II decided to visit her friend in the estate and was surprised by its simplicity. Then Izmailov decided to make Bykovo-Maryino a real estate with a huge house, ponds, park and, of course, the temple.
An architect Bazhenov chose pseudo-gothic style for the church. Now it is decorated with sharp spiers, which wonderfully resemble a mysterious medieval castle. Next to it is the bell tower, which was built later, in the XIX century. All structures harmoniously look together, forming a single architectural ensemble.
The church is two-storied: the upper one is the summer church in honor of the icon of the Vladimir Mother of God, and the lower one, or winter is in honor of the Nativity of Christ.