Story about Sarajevo’s Spite house (Inat kuća)

Do you know the story about Sarajevo’s Spite house? It is a story about one house and much Bosnian stubbornness.

“I was on the other side, but I crossed over here, out of spite” (“Bila sam na onoj strani, ali pređoh ‘vamo, iz inata”) is the sign at the entrance to this building. Today, the Spite house is located near the Sarajevo City Hall, but on the other side of Miljacka river. However, this house was not always there. It was on the other shore.

How did the Spite house get to the other side of the river?

With the arrival of Austro-Hungarian rule in the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina, massive construction projects took place. The Sarajevo City Hall was built in 1896.

Due to the need to build the Sarajevo City Hall and the idea of ​​an electric tram passing that way, the Austro-Hungarian authorities considered it necessary to demolish two restaurants and, among other things, the disputed house.

Spite house and a view of Sarajevo City Hall, which is on the other shore of Miljacka river.

The restaurants were demolished, while the owner of the house, old Benderija, demanded that he be paid a bag of ducats as compensation and that the house be moved, brick by brick, to the other bank of the Miljacka, opposite the City Hall. That’s how it was done, and because of the stubbornness of the owner, the house was called the Spite house, or House of stubbornness.

This story is followed by the anecdote that old Benderija sat on the Šeher-Čehaja bridge every day, smoked tobacco, and followed the craftsmen in what they were doing. All parts of the house could not be transferred, so the foundations, windows, and similar were made according to the original.

The position of the Inat house in relation to the bridge

Although the Spite house follows the basic trends and recognizable details of Bosnian architecture of the Ottoman period, a whole series of unusual details make this house a very unique and interesting building. The design itself is very successful and expresses the character of the architect, owner, and builder as well as the history of the evolution of the building itself.

View of Sarajevo City Hall from the Spite house

The Spite House is a symbol of Bosnian stubbornness and perseverance. In 1997, the Spite house was turned into a restaurant with traditional Bosnian food. Besides that, “Inat kuća” is a protected cultural and historical heritage site.

Amina Šehović, History MA

Proceed Booking