There isn’t a singular style of architecture that could be regarded as the national identity. The architecture of Romania dates back to medieval times, and as a result, there are layers upon layers of factors that guided architectural decisions through time for example, cultural, social, political, demographic, and the dawn of the modern era. Some of the styles that exist in Romania include wooden churches that survived from the 17th century; Buildings put up before, during, and after the world war, and relatively more recent buildings that came up after the wars which heavily featured the Beaux-arts style as many architects of this era were trained in western Europe. After the industrial revolution, the modern style of design was ushered in. 

An architectural review of location: Romania - Sheet1
The Palace of Parliament, By Ro Insider, 11 October 2019,
An architectural review of location: Romania - Sheet2
House from Dumbrăveni, Suceava County, now in the Dimitrie Gusti National Village Museum, unknown architect, 19th century,

Peasant Architecture 17th Century

Peasant architecture was developed in parallel with medieval architecture from the middle ages well into the 19th century. Peasant architecture was more common in the country’s remote areas and was well represented by the wooden churches produced using simple materials and building methods. These simple building methods are still in use today in Romania. Climate, cultural practices, and available materials greatly influenced the traditional Romani architecture. The design of the exterior of the traditional houses was dictated by the roof, which was often created using long rye and wheat straws or reed in swampy areas, and later toward the 18th century, straw was replaced by shingles set with wooden nails. Tin and metal were used later as they were often expensive and not easily available in remote areas. 

An architectural review of location: Romania - Sheet3
Saint Nicholas Church of the Bogdana Monastery, Rădăuți, probably since Bogdan I (1360), unknown architect,

Medieval Architecture 17th Century

Medieval Architecture featured stone buildings with traces of western influences. Romanians inhabited Transylvania, Moldavia, and Wallachia, and in these three cities, the western influence was felt to different degrees. The styles observed in these areas blended Byzantine and Gothic architecture with different elements of western architecture. Fortified towns were greatly developed in times when war was a common occurrence. Their growth and design featured principles of functionality with a central marketplace, church, and narrow-lined streets. Fortified cities in Moldovia laid during the time of Stephen the Great (considered the greatest prince of that time) survived multiple sieges by Sultan Mehmet ll, the conqueror of Constantinople. It was during this time that the style known as the Moldovan style was truly developed; it involved the merging of elements from Gothic and Byzantine styles. Many regional churches were designed using this template and are famous for their outer wall paintings.

An architectural review of location: Romania - Sheet4
Golia Monastery Church, Iași, unknown architect, 17th century,

Renaissance Architecture 17th Century

Some churches from the 17th Century have renaissance influences; they feature Corinthian pilasters and windows with pediments, as seen in the Golia Monastery Church. 

An architectural review of location: Romania - Sheet5
Horezu Monastery Church, unknown architect, 1693,

Brâncovenesc architecture 17th and 18th Century

The 17th Century greatly featured the construction and expansion of existing lay structures, which experienced a lavish overhaul. The expansions featured the addition of schools, art workshops, and printing presses, creating centres for culture. This style came to be known as the Brancovan style, which integrated aspects of Baroque and Oriental features. 

An architectural review of location: Romania - Sheet6
Brâncovenesc – Old St. Eleftherios Church, Bucharest, 1741–1744, unknown architect,

Phanariote Period 1711/ 1716-1821

This architectural style was common among the Greek aristocratic families that occupied some parts of Istanbul. The Phanariots who held administrative positions in the Ottoman Empire were put in charge of the regions of Moldavia and Walachia. The style was more of a lavish upgrade to the previous brancovenesc style being only comparable by grandeur. 

Classism 1821- 1859

With the unification of Moldavia and Wallachia in 1859, there was a need for new administrative, socio-economic, and cultural institutions that represented the ideals of both sides as they moved into a unified identity as a nation. Many of the new administrative buildings were built following the classist style. 

An architectural review of location: Romania - Sheet7
Beaux-Arts aka Eclectic – Iași National Theatre, Iași, 1894–1896, by Fellner & Helmer,

Belle-Epoque 1877-1916

The buildings later in the century followed a style known as the Beaux-Arts, brought by French architects practising in the state. This style was popular in large administrative buildings and homes of the wealthy and among the middle class. This eclectic style became so prevalent in Bucharest, making it known as little Paris. The Buildings of this style were more ornate than the Beaux-Arts; they featured great details on the doors and windows.

The National or Romanian Revival style 20th Century

The Romanian revival style appeared just before World War 1, championed by lon Mincu, who studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts; he encouraged movement away from Beaux-Arts and toward traditional Romani Architecture. Their popularity peaked just around World War 1, with modernism as a design style also appearing around the same period. Modernism, however, experienced great resistance for its simple lines and was seen as not representing enough of the national identity, but with time, it was slowly accepted and later became one of the dominant styles of design. 

Art Deco 1920s 

Art Deco was also a popular style in Romania in the 20s; this style is survived by cinemas that were constructed during the great migration from the silent film, which had companies’ put up huge theatres. 

Bauhaus also made an appearance in Romania and was very popular among the younger generation of architects who liked the basic shapes and the simplicity of design. 

Moorish Architecture 1930s

The origin of this type of architecture in the landscape is still being determined. Still, it is attributed to the locals taking vacations to the French Riviera, where aspects of the Spanish Colonial Revival and Mediterranean Revival Architecture may have been borrowed. 

Blockhouses 1920s- 1940s

These buildings are the Romanian interpretation of Modernism, with simple, clean lines and stacked elements featured in the designs. However, they are dangerous as no seismic considerations were made in the design. 

The Communist Period 1948-1989

During this time, the architecture was standardised and adopted one face model of the buildings observed in Moscow. The communist regime put forward a singular profile that took control of various aspects of modern life, including architectural design and urbanism. 

Union of Romanian Architects, Joe Mabel is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0,

Contemporary Architecture 1989-Present

After the Romanian revolution of 1989, new concepts and plans were undertaken. This led to the adoption of steel and glass and widespread building elements, and also, in recent trends, older buildings get modern additions, for example, the headquarters of the Union of Romanian Architects.


  1. ARTMargins (2019) The history of nothing: Contemporary architecture and public space in Romania, ARTMargins. Available at: (Accessed: February 19, 2023). 
  2. Coman, R. (2017) 17 iconic buildings in Romania, Culture Trip. The Culture Trip. Available at: (Accessed: February 19, 2023). 
  3. Coman, R. (2017) 17 iconic buildings in Romania, Culture Trip. The Culture Trip. Available at: (Accessed: February 19, 2023). 
  4. Hi, so you are (no date) HiSoUR. Available at: (Accessed: February 19, 2023). 
  5. Romanian architecture (2023) Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation. Available at: (Accessed: February 19, 2023). 
  6. SemiColonWeb (no date) Architecture, ROMANIA. Available at: (Accessed: February 19, 2023). 
  7. Sevak, N. (2023) Timeline of restoration: The Union of Romanian Architects (Bucharest, Romania), RTF | Rethinking The Future. Available at: (Accessed: February 19, 2023). 
  8. Wooden Churches of maramureș (2021) Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation. Available at: (Accessed: February 19, 2023). 

An avid reader with an interest in social justice and architecture. Having grown up with an interest in art, she expressed herself through drawings and paintings and later architecture as an additional medium of expression. She believes architecture can aid is solving multiple social issues through careful planning and design.