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Sleeping with the Enemy: Dictators’ Homes Turned Hotels

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Joseph Stalin’s Villa in Sochi, Russia

Stalin pic - alone

Sochi is on everyone’s radar because of the 2014 Winter Olympics but, at one point in history, it was also Joseph Stalin’s favorite summer getaway. Tucked away in the hills of South Russia, Stalin’s dacha is now open to the public. What’s surprising is that his home isn’t an opulent palace or mansion–it’s an understated, three-story villa painted green to blend into the foliage.

Visitors can take a guided tour or even spend a night. They can see Stalin’s office (where his bulletproof couch sits), as well as his desk where he is still working…well, a life-sized wax version of Stalin. You can book a tour of the property through a number of operators, including the Vancouver-based and the Sochi-based Riviera Sochi.

Want to see something really quirky? Check out travel photos from TheWanderingScot, a collection of busts and statues of Lenin and Stalin from around the globe.

Next: President Tito’s Palace