We’ve heard plenty of travel horror stories out of Sochi since the Olympics began, and many have questioned the city’s level of preparedness for the Games.
Despite the controversy, however, Sochi has a long history as a popular resort town for Russians and other eastern Europeans.
Sochi was first developed in the 1920s under Stalin, who was attracted to the area because of its mineral springs, which helped ease his joint pain. The dacha he built there was his favourite of the seven vacation homes he owned around the country.
Over the next few decades, the city by the Black Sea became a favourite destination among Soviet citizens.
We got in touch with German Manfred Schammer, who took some beautiful photos during a trip to Sochi in 1974. He gave us permission to use his photos, which paint a beautiful portrait of the city as it was 40 years ago.
Like many of the other places of leisure that were built in Sochi in the 1930s, it was made to look like a Greek temple, complete with sculptures and imposing columns.
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