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Bulgarian businessman turns passion for Soviet-era cars into museum spectacle

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Bulgarian businessman turns passion for Soviet-era cars into museum spectacle

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Classic cars and bikes and wax works of their famous owners, from Joseph Stalin to Mikhail Gorbechev, have gone on show in Bulgaria. The Varna Retro

Classic cars and bikes and wax works of their famous owners, from Joseph Stalin to Mikhail Gorbechev, have gone on show in Bulgaria.

Point of view

I hope that one day this museum will be twice or three times larger than it is now. This museum is my dream and I am proud of what we achieved here

The Varna Retro Museum is the brainchild of businessman Tsvetan Atanasov, who’s turned his passion for restoring cars from the Soviet era into a spectacle for tourists.

“This took me a lot of time and work to bring the cars to the condition you see them now. We have more than 200 cars in our workshop and all of them are different from the ones in the museum,” he said.

“I hope that one day this museum will be twice or three times larger than it is now. This museum is my dream and I am proud of what we achieved here.”

The museum, in the Black Sea town of Varna, is recreating an important time in history – the communist colour red is used throughout the building.

Child-size bikes and toy cars are on display too.

“I really like the place because it is related to my sweet memories from my childhood. It really is unique for anybody,” said one visitor.

All of the cars on show at the museum are in full working order, with mirrors placed underneath each of them, giving visitors a view of the mechanics.

The museum is hoping to double the number on show over the next three years. And that is good news for those dropping by to get a taste of the communist era.