Architectural and historical research at the Koch Garden was carried out by the Municipal Monument Preservation Institute in Bratislava in 2007. The findings of this research will serve as a basis for the upcoming restoration of this cultural monument. Today's Partizánska Street, where the Koch Sanatorium and Garden are located, was originally an old road in the Wolfern vineyard. The Koch Garden restoration project is being implemented thanks to the support of the main partner VÚB Foundation.

At the beginning of the twentieth century, the area was still sparsely developed. Karol Koch was a prominent doctor, surgeon and orthopaedist. He was also a local chairman of the Slovak Automobile Club and the second chairman of the association for deformed children. He was awarded the Order of St Sava (Second and Third Classes). He had a private sanatorium with a garden built in this area in 1929 and 1930. This project was designed by the prominent architects Dušan Jurkovič, Jindřich Merganc and Otokar Klimeš. The building of the sanatorium with the garden is a protected cultural monument, and it ranks among the best works of Slovak functionalism. It was the most modern sanatorium in the interwar period in Czechoslovakia.

The garden is an integral part of the sanatorium. The architectural concept of the garden design was the work of the architect Jinřich Merganc. It was created from 1930 to 1932 on the site of the original vineyard. Later the greenery was planted by the well-known Slovak botanist and gardener of the Arboretum in Tesárské Mlyňany, Jozef Mišák. Originally, 120 species were planted in the garden, including 30 coniferous and 26 deciduous and evergreen non-native trees.

There are two water tanks in front of the sanatorium. The water inflow had an artistic form; it was covered with white statues – probably of polar bears. The area behind the building was dominated by a fountain adapted for cascading water. Nowadays, the different terraces of the garden are connected by paths and steps. In the nooks and crannies on the platforms, there are resting areas with statues, benches, a stone table, a watering place and a pool. Next to the pool was a flattened area for seating (the plateau). This area functioned as a “sun bath”: it was the area with the longest amount of sunshine in a day. Both the pool and the sunbath were separated from the access staircase and the road by tall greenery. The resting area next to the staircase was paved with loose stone.

The architectural design also included two sculptures – a mother and child statue and a lovers’ statue. We do not know the time of their creation or the name of their sculptor. An interesting element was the pond, situated at the bottom of the garden. It served to drain surface water from the slope. During the Second World War, the building of the sanatorium was a German women's clinic. After the war, it was used as a maternity hospital and belonged to the District Institute of National Health in Bratislava until the end of the twentieth century.

Thanks to its design and its function as a garden for the patients of the sanatorium, it is nowadays the only one of its kind in Slovakia. Its architectural and carefully planned design in conjunction with rehabilitation elements (a pool and sun bath) as well as relaxation elements and recreational components alongside its aesthetic and artistic design in harmony with the sanatorium building, make Koch Garden one of the most notable gardens in Slovakia from the interwar period.

Kochova záhrada historická foto
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