It is said, that the Garner, in which nowadays Hotel “Gdańsk” is situated, hides a very precious secret. It goes back to the time just before the Garner has been built, when there were only a few wooden huts on the bank of Motlawa River.
In the first half of the XVIIIth century, a man speaking a foreign language came to Gdańsk. He was carrying a wooden case on his carriage. He looked after it with utmost attention, as if afraid of losing it. He rented a room in a town house next to the Green Gate and took the case with him. Somebody noticed though, that it has to be something precious. At night, while the town was sleeping, he broke in to the foreigners room and stole the case. The foreigner however was alert, woke up as the door closed behind the burglar and started screaming for help. The town house came to life and the chase begun. The thief run through the bridge and hid amid the wooden huts on the other side of the river. But the chase continued, and he saw a ditch in the ground.
He threw the case inside and buried it. He marked the wall of the hut next to it with a knife and hurried away, passing the people in search for the thief. He came back in the morning, but there were too many people around, so he went away with nothing. In the evening he could not return, because the ship that brought him to town, was just leaving from under the crane Żuraw. He thought he would once return for his treasure buried deep in the ground. But for the next three years he has been sailing on different seas, until he finally returned one night in autumn. The night was cloudy and it was difficult to see anything on the opposite river bank. The next morning he set off in search of the treasure equipped in a shovel. He could not believe his eyes when instead the wooden huts, he saw a huge mason building, the Garner.
The foreigner, who has been so shabbily robbed, was conveying the case for King Stanislas August. It was a collection of little known pieces of art by Rembrandt, which have been bought for the King by Marcello Bacciarelli.
The paintings were never found, as for the fact that no ground works have ever been conducted under the Garner.