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Home Eminent Columnists Nizami Facts

Nizami Facts

Located within the heart of old Hyderabad to the south west of Charminar and Mecca Masjid, the Chowmahalla Palace was the royal seat of the Asaf Jah rulers (1724 to 1948) for the most magnificent period of their reign. This spectacular palace, among the finest royal edifices in India, served as the venue for most of the ceremonial functions of the Asaf Jahi dynasty where the Nizams held gala state receptions and entertained British Viceroys and imperial emissaries for nearly two centuries. This is the Palace where the banquets were held so lavish that it took the servants a month’s time to just clean the crockery & cutlery. This Palace stands out for its intrinsic grandeur and invincible power. It is the replica of Shah of Iran’s Palace and was compared by the historians as a ‘Palace of Arabian Nights’.

The complex exhibits two distinct architectural styles - the Palladian Neo-Classicism of the mid 18th century royal palaces of the southern courtyard and the Islamic Revivalist style of the 19th century structures of the northern courtyard. The Palace Complex was clearly structured by the courtyards and the sequential progression through the courtyards was clearly reflective of the social hierarchy of the royal complex. ‘Chow’ is the Urdu word for four, and ‘Mahal’ means palace. Chow-Mahalla refers to the four palaces that comprise the complex. The Chowmahalla Palace spells ambience, elegance and opulence on an unparalleled scale. The four palaces - Aftab, Afzal, Mahtab and Tahniyat Mahals - are replete with elegant, formal courtyards, landscaped gardens, a fountain system that also serves as a reflecting pool, all capped by open, inviting spaces that are an aesthetic treat. The Chowmahalla palace is now a centre stage for top cultural events and performing arts and is much sought after venue for social & cultural functions.

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