Located in the city of Arkhangelsk in northwest Russia, the wooden building was supposed to be just 2 storeys tall when it was started in 1992. “First I added three floors but then the house looked ungainly, like a mushroom,” says Sutyagin of how 2 floors grew to 13. “So I added another and it still didn’t look right so I kept going. What you see today is a happy accident.” Sutyagin actually added a five-storey bath house in the garden and wanted to keep building but was unfortunately hauled off to jail for a four-year prison sentence in 1998 before he could enjoy it.
Sutyagin is now out of jail but has still not been able to complete his towering home. He and his wife Lena live in four drafty rooms at the bottom of the now crumbling abode and neighbors who call the house a monstrosity have threatened to have it torn down. They fear that since the house is made of wood and is so large, it could easily catch fire and cause the whole neighborhood to go up in flames. Unscathed, Sutyagin conducts tours of his masterpiece, taking tourists around it tip-toeing across rotting planks.