The Moscow Kremlin is the ancient center of Moscow. It is located on the bank of the Moskva River and considered one of the most beautiful architectural ensembles in the world. Apart from the Moskva River the other sides of the Moscow Kremlin overlook Saint Basil's Cathedral and Red Square, the Alexander Garden. The complex includes four palaces, four cathedrals. The Kremlin Wall with Kremlin towers unites the ensemble. The Moscow Kremlin is the official residence of the President of the Russian Federation.
The word Kremlin is often used to refer to the government of the Soviet Union (1922-1991) and its highest members. It is still used in reference to the government of the Russian Federation.
The site has been continuously inhabited. Since the 2nd century BC, up to the 14th century it was known as the 'grad of Moscow'. The word "kremlin" was first recorded in 1331 and its etymology is disputed. The Kremlin walls as they now appear were built by Italian masters between 1485 and 1495. The irregular triangle of the Kremlin wall encloses an area of 275,000 square meters (68 acres).
Cathedral Square is the heart of the Kremlin. It is surrounded by six buildings, including three cathedrals. They are fine examples of Russian architecture of the 15th to 17th centuries. Because the cathedrals the square became the main holy place in Moscow and Russia as a whole.