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A New 7 Wonder Nominee in Granada, Spain: Alhambra

Aug 17, 2007
History is in the making and this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to be apart of it. Visit Alhambra, in Granada, and discover a different World Wonder.

Lisbon, 06th of March 2007 - In Spain stands one of the 21 finalists of the New 7 Wonders, Alhambra in Granada.

Mohammed I, one of the first Nasrid Kings - a Moor Dynasty in Granada - converted a 9th Century Castle into his own private residence, giving way to what we know today as Alhambra.

The monument is known to the World as one of the most beautiful examples of Moorish Architecture, for its paintings, all the interior decorative details and occupies an area equivalent to 13 acres of land, being one of the most popular tourist attractions in Europe.

About Alhambra

The Alhambra is an ancient Palace and Fortress Complex of the Moorish Monarchs of Granada, in southern Spain (known as Al-Andalus when the fortress was constructed), occupying a hilly terrace on the south-eastern border of the city of Granada. It was the residence of the Muslim Kings of Granada and their court, but is currently a Museum exhibiting exquisite Islamic Architecture.

The situation of the Alhambra is one of rare natural beauty; the plateau commands a wide view of the city and plain of Granada, towards the west and north, and of the heights of the Sierra Nevada, towards the east and south.

Moorish poets described it as "a pearl set in emeralds," in allusion to the brilliant colour of its buildings, and the luxuriant woods round them. The park (Alameda de la Alhambra), which in spring is overgrown with wild-flowers and grass, was planted by the Moors with roses, oranges and myrtles, it's most featured characteristic is, however, the dense wood of English elms brought thither in 1812 by the Duke of Wellington.

The park is celebrated for the multitude of its nightingales, and is usually filled with the sound of running water from several fountains and cascades. These are supplied through a conduit 8 km (5 miles) long, which is connected with the Darro at the Monastery of Jesus del Valle, above Granada.

In spite of the long neglect, wilful vandalism and sometimes ill-judged restoration which the Alhambra has endured, it remains the most perfect example of Moorish art in its final European development, freed from the direct Byzantine influences which can be traced in the Mezquita Cathedral of Cordoba, more elaborate and fantastic than the Giralda at Seville.

The majority of the Palace buildings are, in ground-plan, quadrangular, with all the rooms opening on to a central court; and the whole reached its present size simply by the gradual addition of new quadrangles, designed on the same principle, though varying in dimensions, and connected with each other by smaller rooms and passages.

In every case the exterior is left plain and austere, as if the architect intended thus to heighten by contrast the splendour of the interior. Within, the palace is unsurpassed for the exquisite detail of its marble pillars and arches, its fretted ceilings and the veil-like transparency of its filigree work in stucco.

Sun and wind are freely admitted, and the whole effect is one of the most airy lightness and grace. Blue, red, and a golden yellow, all somewhat faded through lapse of time and exposure, are the colours chiefly employed.

The decoration consists, as a rule, of stiff, conventional foliage, Arabic inscriptions, and geometrical patterns wrought into arabesques of almost incredible intricacy and ingenuity. Painted tiles are largely used as panelling for the walls.

Source: Wikipedia

About Granada

Granada is the Capital of the Province with the same name, situated in the eastern part of the region of Andalusia. The land is characterised by the geographical and scenic diversity.

There is the coastal area with its warm climate; the extensive, fertile Genil plain; and the mountainous regions with a colder climate, where we find the 3,481 meter Mulhacen, the biggest peak on the peninsula of Spain.

The city of Granada is located at the foot of the Sierra Nevada mountains at the confluences of the Darro and Genil rivers. Its unique history has bestowed it with an artistic grandeur embracing Moorish palaces and Christian Renaissance treasures. As the last Moorish capital on the Iberian Peninsula, it also holds great symbolic value.

The city of Granada has been shaped by the hills, where the old districts in the Albaicin and the Alhambra were founded, brimming with steep, narrow streets, beautiful nooks and crannies, and marvellous landscapes. The new part of the city is situated on the plain, crisscrossed by the large arteries of Gran Via de Colon and Calle de los Reyes Catolicos, and where the busy streets around the Cathedral are found.

The Moors crossed the strait of Gibraltar in 711 and settled in what was then a small Visigoth town perched atop the Alhambra hill. Here they settled, erected walls and laid the foundation for the prosperous civilization that would follow.

It was in the 9th century when Granada rose to importance after the fall of the Caliphate of Cordoba. Its splendour was reached in 1238, when Mohammed ben Nasar founded the Nasrid dynasty, and the kingdom of Granada stretched from Gibraltar to Murcia. This dynasty bore twenty kings until King Boabdil was forced to surrender Granada to the Catholic monarchs, King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, in 1492.

During three centuries, a magnificent and rich Islamic culture flourished, leaving Granada with architectural marvels of the calibre of the Alhambra, declared a World Heritage Site, along with the Generalife and the Albaicin.

Source: AboutGranada

About Palacio de los Patos

Let yourself be carried away by the sensations this urban oasis inspires.

In the centre of Granada a unique neo-classical building from the second half of the 20th century stands out, presently converted into the surprising hotel Palacio de los Patos.

The fusion of classical and original architecture with modern design details is pure genius. The rooms and spaces are ample, bright and perfect, replete with luxurious and comfortable details. The service is refined and exceptional.

About Barcelo La Bobadilla

Encounter luxury, yet lose yourself in pure nature.

Deep in the heart of Andalusia, between the towns of Cordoba, Malaga, Seville, and Granada, is the luxurious Hotel Barcelo La Bobadilla, fruit of the philosophy and vision of the famous architect from Granada, Jesus del Valle.

The different areas of the hotel are linked by picturesque labyrinthine pathways, courtyards filled with flowers, and an overwhelming marble colonnade. The interior is characterised by the luxury and comfort present in all spaces and rooms, each reflecting its own unique architecture and decor.
About the Author
Jose Felix is the Marketing and Communications Manager for ARTEH?, the Best Independent Hotel Chain - Publituris Awards.

To visit the Hotels or make your reservations please go to ARTEH? - Hotels and Resorts.
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