Resen (Ресен) has a very interesting classic palace. It is the Niyazi Bey Palace. The building is eye catching and stands out from the rest of the buildings all over. But the true experience comes from the story that it holds.
The park in front of Niyazi Bey Palace
The back of Niyazi Bey Palace
The story goes something like this:
In the early 20th century, and when I say early I mean like 1901, a postcard arrived in Resen from Paris. A friend of the Ottoman governor - Ahmet Niyazi Bey showed this postcard to him, on which it was a picture of the building of the Town Hall of Paris. This friend told Niyazi Bey that what was on the picture did not exist in Resen. Upon this argument, Niyazi Bey took it as a challenge and within years, from 1908 till 1912, he had a palace build according to the image of the postcard. And so the today's Niyazi Bey's Palace came to exist in Resen.
A postcard with image of Niyazi Bey's Palace, dated early 20th century. Image: Wikimedia Commons by Raso mk.
To cast out any suspicions about the similarity of the two buildings, here is a photograph of the Town Hall of Paris. Yes, this photograph is from summer 2013, but it is the same town hall as then... imagine that.
Paris, Hôtel de Ville, photo by gratitude to Makedonka Mateska
Niyazi Bey had even greater ideas. He wanted to build a bridge to connect his house with the palace. His house is just opposite the Palace, across the street.
Niyazi Bey's House in Resen
However the plans of Niyazi Bey were stopped since shortly after he went to wage a war and was killed in Dures, Albania, or perhaps in Vallona, Albania.
Today the Niyazi Bey Palace is the Cultural House of Resen. There is a museum where one can see many art works and some things about Resen and the whole Prespa area, like wooden boats made from a single tree trunk. The Palace also hosts the Resen Ceramic Colony which is one of the 9 colonies registered in UNESCO, and you can see what artists had created there.