The Khamovniki region forming a part of the Central Administrative District is situated on the banks of the Moskva river. Blending harmoniously into the natural coastal landscape, the area has completely preserved the architecture of the past centuries in its modern guise.
This metropolitan district owes its name to the palace quarter khamovnaya slobodas (regions), Constantine of Tver sloboda and Kadashevskaya sloboda, the settlements which were inhabited by the weavers, the khamovnikies, who produced there special white linen called “kham”. A variety of weaving goods was also produced here.
The first inhabitants of the Khamovnaya sloboda were visitors from Tver (for this reason the quarter was originally called Constantine of Tver Sloboda). They were settled in this area in the 1720s as the demand for Russian flax linen significantly increased in Europe at the time. So it was necessary to expand its production quickly.
Only in the XVII century they started to call it the Khamovnaya sloboda. The weavers stood high during the rule of Czar Michael Fiodorovich. They were subject to lower taxes, were exempted from several duties and had the right to reside only within their settlement.
The migrants were immediately attributed to the Khamovny yard. They either worked in Kadashi, or woven fabrics at their homes.
Even though the masters of the craftsmen were granted with a number of privileges as compared to other inhabitants of the capital, for example, payment of lower taxes, release from some duties, they were subject to some limitations. In particular, the inhabitants of the Khamovnaya sloboda were forbidden to change residence, and in addition to give the girls in marriages to the representatives of other metropolitan quarters.
Brick factories start operation upon the initiative of the government in connection with the massive stone construction. In the middle of the XVII century these factories were located in the Khamovniki. At the same time the Khamovny Yard itself is being reconstructed. Wooden buildings are replaced with stone ones. The scale of the campaign and the character of the production can be demonstrated by the impressive equipment of the Khamovny Yard. The catalogue of the period from 1630 till 1631 contains 118 forms of reeds (hackles for handweaving) for various types of products.
All woven products were required for the needs of the Royal court and rarely were put on the market.
The Chambers of the Khamovny yard are extant on the street of Leo Tolstoy in the memory of the weavers.
Modern Khamovniki area is one of the most favorable central districts of Moscow from the ecological point of view. There are some green areas like the Neskuchny (Entertaining) garden, the Mandelstam Park.
A large number of temples, monasteries, convents, museums, historical buildings and landmarks are located on the territory of the district: the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, the Pushkin State Museum, the Russian Academy of arts, the Museum of Moscow, the Memorial house of A. I. Herzen, the Exhibition hall of the Federal archives, the Museum of sport in Luzhniki, the Museum "Bourganov's House", Zurab Tsereteli’s Gallery of arts.
The most famous Orthodox churches in Moscow are located in the Khamovniki: the Novodevichy convent, the Conception convent, the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour.