"Comares Palace - Hall of Ambassadors" Alhambra - Nasrid Palaces Tip by dlytle

Alhambra - Nasrid Palaces, Granada: 146 reviews and 281 photos

  Part of the original floor-Hall of Ambassadors
by dlytle

The Hall of the Ambassadors is a small room of about 36 sq feet (11 sq m). A 2-story tall cedar wood ceiling tops it. Windows set in thick walls afford views on three sides. The walls, of course, are covered with ceramic tile and stucco, forming geometric patterns as well as verses from the Koran.

Here an enthroned sultan received visitors, amid one of the most beautiful creations of Islamic art. Every flat space on walls, floor, and ceiling is covered with a brilliant pattern of sculptured plaster, tile, or cedar wood. Motifs used by Arab craftsmen included geometrical designs like squares, circles, ellipses, and cones; complicated patterns of swirls, scrolls, cusps, and stars; leaves, flowers, birds, animals; and strange stalagmite formations and long borders of Arabic script.

The hall is completely covered by decorative inscriptions: niches, arches, walls and dressing rooms are all covered by poems, typically praises to God.

The dome is a wooden masterpiece of craftsmanship. According to Fernandez-Puertas, the ceiling is a representation of the 7 Heavens of the Islamic Paradise, with God's throne on the 8 heaven, represented in the center by a sumptuous and pearly iridescence of nacre boss, and the four trees of life are on the diagonals. It is formed by cedar wood decorations covered by interlacing patterns.

Its floor was blue and gold tiled, some vestiges of which remain (see picture), roped off in the center of the hall. The originals are those tiles in which the blues surrounding the dynastic shields are painted right to the edge and are completely flat, so as to be smooth for unshod feet. The later, post-conquest imitations stick up slightly around the edges of the colors.

The walls of the hall are 8 feet (2.5 m) wide and have three arches each leading to three small rooms and twin balconies and windows above. Some of the original floor still remains (see picture).

In 1492 this was the room from which Ferdinand and Isabella met with and agreed to sponsor Columbus' journey to the New World.

Address: Calle Real s/n
Directions: advanced booking is advised to prevent crowdings
Phone: 902 441 221
Website: http://www.alhambra-patronato.es

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Oct 18, 2003
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