Completed in 1903, it shared many characteristic with the Singer Company Building. It also had a metal frame, allowing most of the facades to be taken up with windows, and was also decorated with weathered bronze statuary by Estonian sculpture Amandus Heinrich Adamson. Both buildings were strongly criticized in many quarters for their vulgarity and the lack of deference to their historical surroundings.
The ground floor of the building was divided into three retail halls, all featuring sumptuous glass and bronze decoration, while the first floor housed a restaurant and a theatre. While critics may have been ambivalent about the building, Petersburgers soon grew to love it, and continued to call it the Eliseyev Emporium long after the Bolshevik government had nationalized it and renamed it Gastronom No. 1.