The House of Officers (The House of Army) - Bitola
The construction of the House of Army or the House of Officers began in 1909 and the project is believed to be the work of architects from Austria and Italy, and it was built by local builders.
In fact, both the architects and those who lovingly conceived this building left in it, in its revival, faith in the meeting of east and west in a different “paradise” world. The object is a synthesis of several styles and a harmonious combination of elements and symbols transferred from east and west. The construction was began for the needs of Turkish officers, but it failed to be completed in their time.
The concept of this building was conceived as a synthesis of a fortress and a palace. The fortress can be seen in the composition of the building, through the appearance of “towers” and decorative cannons, while the palace can be seen in its grandeur and elegance, through high ceilings and windows.
Shortly after the beginning of the construction, Bitola was affected by the Balkan Wars and the First World War, which stopped all activities and the building suffered some damage. It was completed after the end of the First World War and served the elite of several armies, like a palace for ceremonial receptions, balls, entertainment, cinema screenings etc. A luxury chandelier was brought to the ballroom from the Skopje Officers’ House, destroyed in the 1963 earthquake.
After the Macedonian Army left the building, the facade was renovated but the building was never put into function again. It was used for filming in several films, various events were organized inside and in the yard, but a permanent and sustainable solution was never found, causing Oficerski to become a neglected ruin.
In 2020, the Municipality of Bitola, with the assistance of the EU and the World Bank, started the process of complete reconstruction.