Famed Romanian violinist Alexandru Tomescu aims to restore Caraiman cabin
Probably the most well-known Romanian violinist alive, Alexandru Tomescu, bought the famous Caraiman cabin in the Bucegi mountains, planning to restore it to its former glory.
The cabin, situated at an altitude of 2000 meters, was initially built in 1907, but it was destroyed during the First World War. Its reconstruction began in 1937, when a group of youngsters became enamored with the sights in the area. They obtained the concession for the land and hired Petre Pascu, an entrepreneur who had built numerous touristic sites in the Bucegi mountains. Architects Gabriela Stork and Stelian Ganescu were also brought on board to design the cabin itself.
A funicular, which is a railway along a steep mountainside, but also horses, donkeys, and carts were used to bring materials up to the cabin, as roads were largely lacking. By the end of the year, the cabin was done. Periodic maintenance works were necessary. Three times – in 1938, 1947, and 1959 – the cabin’s roof was swept up by powerful winds. Another renovation took place in the mid-2000s, after which the cabin was bought and turned into a private vacation home.
The Caraiman cabin was up for sale in 2019 for around EUR 200,000, and Tomescu eventually became its owner. The violinist had visited the cabin 20 years prior as a student and was already familiarized with it.
“You become used to working with old things when you’re a violinist. The good violins are the old ones. You need to fix them... there are things that need my intervention, that need saving. [The Caraiman cabin] is a unique place, full of energy and with a sensational location and view. It is one of the few cabins in Romania with mountain architecture. It has a history. And it belongs to the Bucegi, the cradle of mountaineering in the Carpathians,” Tomescu told Profit.ro.
The violinist has contracted architects and engineers to renovate the cabin once more and reopen it to tourists and mountaineers. “I don't want a 5-star hotel, I don't want a business, I want something specific to mountains areas, but also with an aesthetic side. A place for mountaineers, but also for musicians and artists in general,” Tomescu said.
The renovation works will take several months, during which Tomescu and his family visit the cabin as often as possible. He often transports materials to the cabin by himself, with his offroad car, or even just by walking them to the cabin. He says access is the main problem that visitors encounter.
Back in 2007, Tomescu was offered the opportunity to play a Stradivarius violin, an object labeled as a national treasure, by the Romanian state. The violin is considered one of the best-preserved Stradivarius instruments.
(Photo source: Alexandru Tomescu on Facebook)