Built in the late 19th-century to commemorate 900 years of Orthodox Christianity in the city, the cathedral was designed in the Byzantine style with art nouveau influences.
When the project was initiated in 1852, it received donations from people from across the Russian Empire. The nearby Pechersk Lavra (Monastery of the Caves) made a material donation of over a million bricks.
The cathedral was completed in 1882, with its bright yellow façade and seven blue domes conforming to the standard Byzantine style. The fresco-lined interior and its decoration, which were not fully completed until 1896, are particularly striking in style and origin. The entirety is accented in gold, with contemporary art influences eked into the mosaics, sculptures and iconostasis.