By Jill Worrall
This is the first time I've stayed in a hotel of such architectural merit that my window has been spotlit. I didn't realise the front of the Marriott in Yerevan, Armenia, was floodlit until I opened the curtains the first night and found myself bathed in orange light. I wasn't really dressed for such a public appearance so had to dive for cover.
But, when suitably attired, I've spent many entertaining minutes watching life whiz by on Republic Square (formerly Lenin Square) beneath my window. The square is actually more of a hexagon surrounded on all sides by buildings of monumental proportions, including the Marriott.
Across from me is the central post office and Finance and Economy ministry with its clock tower, and to the left of it the colonnaded National Gallery.
Three lanes of traffic hurtle around a central roundabout of black stone which once was home to a statue of Lenin. Well, it hurtles sometimes, but not when a wedding party arrives.
First comes the stretch limo for the bride and groom - sometimes they are standing up, heads poking out through the sun roof, the bride's veil billowing out behind and on occasions engulfing her new husband...
Photo: Renovation complete: The fountains in Republic Square, Yerevan.