Another iconic building in Veliko Tarnovo is the Hadji Nikoli Inn (Хан Хаджи Николи in Bulgarian). This beautiful inn is located the heart of the Old Town, in Samovodska Charshia, and is a cultural monument of national significance.
The inn is an example of late Bulgarian Revival architecture with historic and sentimental value to Tarnovians. It was built in between 1858–1862 by the native master-builder Nikola Fichev (known as Kolyu Ficheto, who also built the House with the Monkey) for the needs of a wealthy merchant named Hadji Nikola Minchev (Hadji Nikoli). Hadji is an honorary title, given to people who have visited the Holy Land, Jerusalem and the Empty Tomb (Tomb of Jesus).
Hadji Nikoli Inn is of great importance due to the fact that it is the sole “survivor” of the total of 70 inns built in Veliko Tarnovo in the past.
The property comprises of self-contained premises located on each floor, which in the past have been used as storage and workshops, a narrow courtyard enclosed from three sides. On the ground level facing the street, shops were built and still used as such today. The building has a solid brick, natural stone and iron construction.
The Inn has undergone a number of modifications due to urban planning and development plans in the street, but now has been restored to its original form. It operated as an ethnographic museum until 1987 and was open to visitors. Later it was given to the National Museum of Architecture and the shops were used by craftsmen of Samovodska Charshia. After restitution in 1992, the premises were handed back to heirs of Hadji Nikoli. The Inn was closed to visitors and left to decay for more than ten years.
It was bought by Eduard Beck in 2005 and it was restored to the building you see now between the years of 2006 – 2010. It now hosts a restaurant, a wine bar, an art gallery, guest rooms and a museum.