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Exploring Carturesti Carusel: Bucharest’s Beautiful Bookstore

Location of Carturesti Carusel

The building dating from the XIX century is owned by the famous Chrissoveloni family of bankers from 1903 and was refurbished and transformed in what is known today as one of the most beautiful libraries in the world.

During the communism era, the building was confiscated by the regime and was transformed into a general store known as Familia ( The Family).

Carturesti Bookstore is located in the Old Town of Bucharest Romania.

Bucharest’s Old City Centre is definitely a place you must include in your personal travel itinerary if you ever visit Bucharest.

The area is the old part of the capital, so there are a lot of old buildings left from World War II Bucharest.

The buildings are aligned on both sides of the narrow streets so this place is pedestrian walk area.

The things war did not destroy in 1944, were destroyed by the communists when the erected the grandiose Civic Centre project, that almost destroyed the entire area to make way for Casa Poporului (the biggest civilian building in the world) and Bulevardul Unirii.

On the Bucharest Old Town streets lies a hidden gem not mentioned in any of the Bucharest guides, which is one of the most beautiful bookstores in the world: The Carturesti Bookstore.

How to get to Carturesti Carusel Bookstore?

Because it is located in the Bucharest city centre, in the Bucharest Old Town, the bookstore is easily accessible by metro from quite any part of the city, the closest Metro station is called “Universitate” and is just a few minutes away from Carturesti.

If you wish, you get out of the metro at “Unirii” station and take a nice relaxing walk through the narrow streets, admire the old buildings in the Old Town so you can get in the atmosphere before you arrive at Carturesti Bookstore.

If you wish to google the exact location, here it is what you should search for: “Strada Lipscani 55, București 030033, Romania”.

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Important to know

You can visit Cărturești Carusel Bookstore every day because it is open daily:
Monday to Wednesday from 10:00 am to 10:00 pm and
Thursday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 12:00 am

If you wish to avoid big crowds and people that only visit Carturesti Bookstore to take an Instagram photo, plan your visit early in the morning or late in the day. The middle of the weekdays is less crowded.

Bear in mind that most of the books sold inside are in the Romanian language, but there is also a small section with English language books.

As most bookstores do, Carturesti also sells novelty items like agendas, pens, Romanian souvenirs, notebooks, handbags, sweets (tea, coffee, chocolate, jam, etc.), and more.

We just bought a book, a magnet and a small Moleskine notebook with a pen.

History of Carturesti Carusel

This building from the 19th century acted as a bank head office till it was enclosed 1948.

After that, it was a men’s clothes shop, and also afterwards a general shop during Communism.

After 1989, when the Communist regimen collapsed, the building was abandoned and also become spoil until it was saved by Jean Chirssoveloni that invested concerning 1,000,000 EUR to bring back and also transform it with the engineers from Square One.

After the structure was entirely restored to the stunning structure it once was, he rented it to Carturest chain, the largest bookstore chain in Romania.

Carturesti Carusel Bookstore Bucharest
Carusel Carturesti Bookstore Bucharest

Carturesti Carusel Today

Carturesti bookstore chain considers this building its flagship concept store.

The 1000 square meter space take up 6 floors and hosts more than 10.000 books, 5000 albums and large DVD collection.

You can find here a multimedia area in the basement, there are an art gallery and exhibition area on the first floor, and the cafe and bistro on the top floor is waiting for you to drink a coffee or a tasty cup of tea while you just sit, relax and read your favourite book.

They also serve tasty food, wine and many more waiting to be discovered.

Design of Carusel Carturesti

The Carturesti Carusel name translates to “Carousel of Light” and according to the Square One Architect “The sinuous shape of the floors creates a dynamic atmosphere similar to a moving carousel…”.

The light that enters through the skylight floor beautifully lights the white interior and the airy design accompanied by the warm lighting system that was inspired by the night starry sky.

Many of the building’s classic original elements were left intact during the restoration process.

Some of the notable architectural elements were the spiral staircases, Byzantine marble colonnades and several balconies with the railings composed of metal rods that are both transparent and opaque, depending on where you look at them.

Various cultural events, readings, exhibitions, concerts and book launch events are hosted inside Carturesti Carusel.

During our visit, we even saw a young married couple with a professional photographer shooting beautiful wedding photos on the ground floor near the spiral staircase, and afterwards, they went up the first floor for some more photo shooting.

Need a place to stay in Bucharest, close to Carturesti Bookstore?

Here is our accommodation list of Hotels close to Carusel Carturesti Bookstore located in the Bucharest Old Town, right in the city center of Bucharest,  so you can be within 12 minutes walk from the bookstore:

Do you prefer to search for other hotels nearby?

Carturesti bookstore is the perfect place for Instagrammers

As you would probably guess by now, Bookstore  Carturesti is the perfect place for Instagrammers, being a haven for photographers. Professional photographers book the space in advance for a nice photo session.

We saw this beautiful bookstore so many times on Instagram, it just kept showing up again and again and we just fell in love with this beautiful library.

When we decided to visit Bucharest we have already pinned this on our personal travel itinerary,  where we included also other Instagrammable places we had to visit in Bucharest.

Logistical tips and tricks for your trip

Book your accommodation

We always use as they have the best price-quality ratio and they offer a wide range of hotels, guesthouses, apartments, and villas to choose from.

You will find here all types of accommodations, from the cheapest ones to the most luxurious.

Don't forget travel insurance

We never leave home without HeyMondo Insurance or Safety Wings Insurance as they offer the best services and a good value for money, plus COVID coverage.

Travel insurance will always protect you against unexpected events and cost like illness, COVID, injury, theft, or travel cancellation.

We never go on any trip without travel insurance and there were many cases when we had to use it.

Renting a car
We like to explore a country on our own and a car gives us the mobility and freedom to do that.

We always rent our car from Discovercars as they have free cancellation 48 hours prior to starting date and a wide range of car rental companies and options to choose from all over the world.

Tours and attractions
When we are looking for some adventure or we simply want to break up the monotony and discover new places, we always use GetYourGuide.

We love it because we always find the most amazing experiences, with free cancellation and a large variety of activities and tours to choose from.

Airplane tickets and holiday packages
Expedia is our ally when searching for the best price for airplane tickets as it works as an aggregator for a huge number of airlines and we always find the best price for our flights.

Travel tip: use Expedia when you are searching for holiday packages as they have many last-minute offers and great discounts for hotels, flights, and even the whole holiday packages.