General Management: Roman Couldlie
Dubrovsky Castle is located in the Natural Preserve area of Chervonoberezhia, Lubny region of the Poltava State—once, historic lands of Polish High Grand Prince Yaremiya Wishnewetzky and his family property. Through the intermarriage with Polish Royal Princely family of Rzhevutsky, the Dubrovsky Castle became the property of Rzhevutsky family. Later on, it was transformed into one of the summer estates of Polish Countess Evelina Hanska, born Royal Polish Princess Evelina Rzhevutska (she was the great-great grandmother of the present owner of the Dubrovsky Castle, Christina Marie Kushch Katrakis). Dubrovsky Castle is approximately 400 years old (in its original form and location, which was changed throughout the years to fit the fashion of the time).

The castle derived its name from the lush oak tree groves, which surround it. Such oak groves were called “Dubrovy” in Polish, hence “dubrovsky” castle. Its natural settings are truly striking; it is located on the elevated slope, overlooking the river Udai and facing its own private natural island populated by wild horses. From behind, the Castle is surrounded by the thick green forest covered hills, rich in mushrooms, berries and animal life. The nature around the Castle is truly pristine and untouched by human hand. This area has been a nature preserve for centuries due to its unique location, animal population and geology. The river is perfect for daily swimming, with its sandy shore and blooming white lilies. Its waters are teaming with rich variety of fish. Fishing is allowed and licenses are not required (except for large net fishing).

Dubrovsky Castle also has a very interesting and unique recent history. One of the most recent landlords of the estate, also a member of Rzhevutsky family (who obtained his education in London in 1900s, in the field of natural sciences, and subsequently returned to the estate) discovered major archaeological and paleontological sites on the grounds of the estate itself. Located not far from the estate were the Castle’s wine storage cellars. The owner went to get wine for the dinner party an afternoon and noticed that part of the underground cellar had collapsed. Through the fallen brick and mud, he spotted bone-like shapes. After further examination, he determined that these were the mammoth tusks, bones and remains of the prehistoric settlement. He telegraphed the discovery to London and Paris. Soon after, French archaeologists and paleontologists began excavation works, which continue up to this day. Every year a group of Sorbonne paleontologists and archeologists excavate the site, which it turns out is the fourth largest prehistoric human settlement and mammoth graveyard in Europe. It is here, that the mystery of the prehistoric mammoth-hunting techniques were discovered, along with the huge the mammoth cemetery, located right beneath the cliff from which the animal was thrown during hunts, chased by men and fire. Thus the gigantic animals were killed, crushed as a result of the fall and could be eaten and used (fur was used for clothing and house construction, bones for tools, ornaments, ritualistic items, and artifacts). All these were further discovered on this site. A number of world documentary films reenacting the livelihood of these people and the mammoth population were made and shown on the History Channel, Discovery Channel, National Geographic, and others.

During the last centuries, the Dubrovsky castle was used as a large hunting lodge. Even today hunting is allowed within the nature preserve, but only with license and only during specific periods to enable regulation of animal population (deer, wild boar, fox, bear, wolves, duck, elk, etc.) Overall the animals do not fear humans, and wander all the way up to the doors of the Castle where one can even hand feed them or just admire their beauty from up-close. Dubrovsky Castle is a four-floor historical building.

Ground floor holds garages (these can hold 2 cars, and were previously used for carriages), wine making rooms and storages, two outdoor exits, and rooms that once were servant quarters and work studios. There are 6 such rooms in total.

The first floor comprises 7 rooms, including kitchen, sauna, green drawing room, indoor pool, two separate bathrooms each with a shower, game room (used in the old day for card games), dining room, large living room with a historic original baroque fireplace (ball room), two separate corridors, outdoor terrace veranda facing the flower garden (perfect place for morning coffee, breakfast or afternoon tea, equipped with dining table and chairs and outdoor lights), two outdoor exits with stairs, guest room and exit to the historic spiral staircase tower, with original canon fire size windows

Ascending the stairs, one enters to the second floor of the Castle, which is made up of three large bedrooms, hallway, master bathroom with bath and shower and a large circular outdoor terrace, overlooking the river, the island across and the picturesque hills around. It is a perfect place for recreation, contemplation, morning coffee, afternoon tea or a drink, while enjoying the prime sunset view over the river. The terrace is also fully equipped for the outdoor dinners and relaxation (the swing couch, rocking chair, dining table and chairs, lights, etc.)

Ascending the spiral stairs further, one reaches the final third floor of the Castle. This is a very large attic area, which was used for drying herbs, vegetables, nuts, mushrooms, fruit and clothing in former times. The present owner planned to transform this into a large gym and library. At the moment the floor is vacant and open to any further design and use.

The materials used in the construction of the Castle vary. Since the building was reconstructed several times throughout its history, its various parts date to different periods. For instance, the foundation is the oldest section and is made of stone, its walls are very thick brick, and the famous spiral stairway tower (standing on elevated ground and overlooking the river) was probably used for strategic defense, with small canon fire windows on all three levels. The floors and the roof are made of wood. During the last reconstruction, some concrete was added to stabilize the structure overall, otherwise the building has been maintained as close to its original state as possible.

Dubrovsky Castle has its own organic, small private winery, producing mostly dry and semi-dry red and rose wines, also some dessert wines similar to sherry. Additionally the castle has its own fully organic garden and orchard producing vegetables, herbs, fruit, nuts, and berries. One of the true beauties surrounding the Castle is the flower garden, blooming from early spring until end of fall. The Castle also has its own water well, which supplies to the estate underground water rich in mineral content. It is perfect for drinking as well as general use. A large fence protects the estate from the sides, yet leaving it fully open only to the river. This was done to protect it not only from the possible intruders, but also from the wild animals, that may approach the Castle. While it has all the modern amenities (water, sanitation, heating, satellite TV, and the like) the estate still preserves its natural historic charm, for which it has always been praised and known. The fine road runs from the very grounds of the Castle deep into the territory of the natural preserve, making nature walks easy and comfortable. In addition, a number of small walking paths run through the woods surrounding the Castle, and along the hills behind. Here, everyone can enjoy such nature walks, be it mushroom and berry hunters, herb and flower gatherers, bird watchers, or just couples or families with children. The main concrete road runs right up to the gates of the estate, further connecting it with the highway nearby, and to the city of Lubny (a major regional center filled with all the amenities: market place, shops, restaurants, hospitals, hotels, clubs, cafes, schools, university, etc.)

Recently, the present owner has put up the estate for sale or long-term rent, due to the difficulty of maintaining many properties at once, and having to travel and live abroad.

Dubrovsky Castle’s services may include house personnel (cleaning, cooking, laundry, changing sheets, etc), 24/7 security and all the latest amenities. Additional services may be ordered and may include: personal driver and a car, dinner/lunch/breakfast services, washing/ironing, guided tours, translator, airport transfers, etc. Weddings and baptisms can be held in open air family chapel grounds, located next to the Castle facing the breath-taking view of the river and the castle’s private island (arranged by agreement).
English Editing: Umur Celikyay