Late Baroque manor house Chminianská Nová Ves
The municipality of Chminianska Nová Ves was established in the original area of the municipality of Svinia. In 1248, the area was owned by the Šariš Castle. In the middle of the municipality, close to the church, behind the tall trees of the park, stands a magnificent aristocratic manor house from the Baroque period. It was built by a Merse de Szinye family and it was inhabited until the middle of the 19th century, when the family moved to the manor house in Chminianské Jakubovany. The manor house stands on the site of an older building. The manor house stands on flat terrain in the vicinity of the Svinka river. The floor plan of the building is rectangular with a protruding elliptical risalit from the north side and a square risalit from the south side. Underneath the building is a basement. The two longitudinal sections of the basement are covered with barrel vaults. The central room of the ground floor is the hall in the northern wing with a high trough vault, where fragments of wall paintings from the 18th – 19th century can be seen under newer layers of paints. The paintings are believed to cover not only all the walls but also the vaults, as was common in those days. The window fillings have also been preserved – compressed arches with undercuts and sloping linings. The other areas of the northern wing feature Prussian vaults with partially preserved stucco decoration at the top of the vaults. The English landscape garden with trees dating back to the middle of the 18th century near the manor house has been preserved. The garden was re-shaped at the end of the 19th century and in the second half of the 20th century. The garden has a floor plan of an irregular rectangle. In 1903 there was a big fire in the municipality. It is possible that the fire affected the manor house too, as around that time the manor house was repaired. The manor house was renovated again in 1945. From 1959 onwards, the manor house was used as a kindergarten, later as the Local National Committee, culture house, police station and for a while there was also a bar in the basement. The manor house was sporadically used until 1968 (1970) by the mayor Jozsef Balazs (Baláž, 1888), from the Balasz family (de Villa Bala) from nearby Ondrašovce, whose great-great-great mother came from the Merse family. He maintained the tradition of the Merse Ball – an annual event never missed by the nobility from Novohrad, Zemplín, Šariš, Spiš and Turiec. The ball was a sought-after event remembered even today by some as an event of the season. It is said that underneath the manor house is a secret escape route leading under the stream to a natural cave formation near Ondrašovice.