Chowmahalla Palace, Hyderabad

The Chowmahalla Palace or literally “4 palace” was the residence of the Nizams of Hyderabad. This palace complex served a ceremonial role including coronations and state banquets. The palace is said to be modeled after the palace of the Shah of Iran. This particular palace was built in 1750.

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Khilawat Mubarak or Grand Hall
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The grand hall, adorned with crystal chandeliers
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The long red carpet corridors above the grand hall
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A Belgian crystal glass chandelier in the grand hall (Khilawat Mubarak)
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A chandelier against a beautifully decorated door
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Details of the ceiling in the grand hall of Chowmahalla Palace

As a first time visitor to Chowmahalla, I was impressed by the grandeur of this palace, immaculately maintained grounds and buildings, and tremendous opportunities for photography. Needless to say I shall be visiting there again on my next trip to Hyderabad.

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A front view of the Khilawat Mubarak
Technical Details

All pictures from a Nikon D80 camera fitted with a Tamron 18-250mm f3.5/5.6 zoom lens. Photographs processed in Adobe Lightroom and NIK software suite. Larger versions of the photographs are available from my flickr page.

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The Royal Verandah

The term verandah has made its way to English via India and refers to an open roofed courtyard around a bungalow or terrace. According to Wikipedia, a verandah  “commonly refers to balconies on cruise ships and some hotel properties. It is also described as an open pillared gallery, generally roofed, built around a central structure.”. The following verandah is from the Chowmahalla Palace in Hyderabad, India. Photographed as a single bracketed frame, this image was converted to black-and-white in Silver Efex Pro to add texture and tonal contrast.

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Pillared and beautifully decorated verandah at the Chowmahalla Palace, Hyderabad, India

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Doors to perception

Doors to Perception

If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, infiniteWilliam Blake

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Infinite doors at Chowmahalla Palace, Hyderabad, India

Photographed at the Chowmahalla Palace, the seat of the Nizams of Hyderabad, India (January 2012).

 

Golconda Fort – Part 1

No trip to Hyderabad in India can be considered complete without a visit to the magnificent, awe-inspiring Golconda Fort. Situated a few miles out of the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secundarabad, the Golconda fort shows a formidable presence in the horizon. The fort itself dates back to original construction by the Kakatiya dynasty (a branch of the Chalukya rulers of south india in the 12th century.

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The Golconda Fort, Andhra Pradesh

The fort was expanded and further fortified by the Qutub Shahi kings of Hyderabad in the 16th century when they made Golconda the capital of their kingdom.

The narrow entrance served to slow invading armies
The narrow entrance served to slow invading armies

The fort itself is in many levels, with the imperial residences at the very top of the citadel (120 metres above), while the lower levels served as garrison quarters and administrative offices. The fort is surrounded by a wall 10KM long with many bastions to ward off attackers.

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Part of the inner ramparts of Golconda Fort
Stables
Stables
Administrative complex
Administrative complex

There are over 80 semi-circular bastions in the fort (below) that provided excellent 360 degree view of the neighbouring countryside.

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One of over 80 semi-circular bastions at Golconda

More photographs of the challenging climb to the top of the fort follows in part 2 of this fort. Please click on any of the pictures above t see a larger version. All photographs from a Nikon D80 camera with a Tamron 18-250mm lens. Processed in Adobe Lightroom and Nik Color Efex Pro.