Palacio Alcazar

January 20, 2015

in Europe, Kaitlin McCuskey, Spain, Spring 2015

Palacio Alcazar, otherwise known as la casa de Sevilla, is a giant Moorish palace that is a World Heritage Site as of 1987. Our guide told us that the palace incorporates many types of design such as Arabic, Gothic, Baroque, and Renaissance. The palace opens up to a large courtyard from which all three entrances are visible. Directly in front is the entrance to the primary house, to the right is the side living space, and to the left is the gigantic garden.

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The side living space consisted of  greeting and business rooms, as well as a room constructed by Queen Isabela for the protection of sailors and their expeditions. The first portrayal of Christopher Columbus is thought to be on this portrait in the top left hand corner:

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In the main house there are an additional two entrances, to the right was only for family and to the left the visitors. The obnoxious amount of entrances is due to the prevalence of sieges or overthrowing the government. If the assassins had more options perhaps the family would have more time to escape. Our guide pointed out the plaster of the main entryway, the calligraphy molded into it looks almost symbolic, seen below.

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The decorators played una “broma” (trick) on the catholic kings though. For later in the twentieth century when these moldings were restored experts in Arabic found that messages from the Koran and mentions of Allah lay within the molds. Why did it go unnoticed? Well do you see anything close to words in that picture? I sure don’t and neither did the kings. I’m not into architecture at all. The most I’ve ever dabbled in it was with Sims, which is a great game, but besides admiring it I don’t have a huge interest. This palace though changed that. Within this palace, you’d find it difficult to locate a room not decorated head to toe based on a certain theme. The following pictures show this, the one with the gold half circles represents the room of lovers – media del naranja is equivalent to my other half, don’t ask me the origin of this phrase. It’s as bizarre to me as it is to you to relate an orange to love.

The other room I want to highlight is next to the lover room. The pillars in this room represent the trunks of trees and the half circles the leaves of the trees. This room was meant to be fully immersed in the nature aspect with an open terrace and infinity pool in the middle. If I lived here you know where to find me if I went missing. Here is the spectacular room.

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The rest of the pictures are of the garden in this palace. It puts to shame all the grandeur we pretend our mansions have today. I plan on returning multiple times to fully take in and appreciate these gardens. In the spring apparently there are concerts and festivals within them as well. As the locals say it que guey!

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Any garden isn’t complete without some pea cocks.

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Don’t worry there’s more to come!

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