Count Arakcheyev chose Gruzino as an imperial gift from Emperor Paul when Arakcheyev was appointed Commandant of St. Petersburg, though the area was in disrepair. He was given the land despite prior claim to it by the governor of the Novgorod and Tver provinces. Using serf labor, Arakcheyev built Gruzino to one of the most up-to-date estates in Russia at the time. The celebrated sculptor Ivan Martos contributed a statue of Emperor Paul. Two months after Arakcheyev's death, Emperor Nicholas gave the estate to the Novgorod Cadet Corps.
Although it is stated officially that the manor was destroyed by the Nazi German troops during the World War II, other sources maintain that the estate was wiped out in the 1930s, during Joseph Stalin's industrialisation process. The statues of lions formerly adorning the porch are all that remains from this Neoclassical ensemble: these were transported and mounted for display in the Novgorod Kremlin.
- Jenkins, Michael. (1969) Arakcheev: Grand Vizier of the Russian Empire. The Dial Press, Inc. ISBN 0-571-08222-X