A real-life house of horrors, this imposing fin de siècle building is remembered by generations of Latvians as the local headquarters of the notorious Soviet secret police – NKVD/KGB. Arbitrary arrests, torture, executions – it all happened here. It's now an exhibition dedicated to victims and perpetrators of political repression. A sign outside reads 'KGB imprisoned, tortured, executed and humiliated its victims'. English-language tours are usually in the mornings, but confirm in advance.
Older Rīgans remember the lines of people who would form along the grey street outside the building hoping to get word about their missing loved ones. On the building at Brīvības iela 70, you can still see the metal brackets used for KGB cameras that recorded the faces of anyone who ventured near the Corner House.