After the wedding celebrations, I stayed back in Hyderabad to explore the city and it’s attractions. Hyderabad was ruled by the Nizams of Hyderabad and My first stop was the Chowmahalla Palace which was the official seat of the Nizams during their rule. Chow means four and Mahalla means Palace in Urdu.
Being an Interior Designer, I always gravitate towards beautifully decorated spaces especially the ones with a little bit of history involved in them. One of my favourite objects to decorate a room with – is a vintage looking Chandelier. When I came across the Chandelier room inside the Chowmahalla Palace it was Love at first sight.
On our drive to the palace, I googled about the last and the most popular Nizam of Hyderabad.
Here are some interesting facts about his life:
- In 1937, Time Magazine featured the Nizam as the Richest Man in the world.
- He wore patched clothes and knitted his own socks and even borrowed cigarettes from his guests.
- He gifted a diamond necklace to Queen Elizabeth II as a wedding present and the necklace is called the Nizam of Hyderabad necklace and is still in Queen’s collection.
- He had a £ 50million ostrich-egg sized diamond, which he used as a paperweight
- He had a fleet of 50 Rolls Royce cars
- His 173-piece jewellery collection was bought by the Indian government, It had an estimated worth of £200 million but it was bought for a low price of £33m.
On arrival at Chowmahalla palace I walked through a long courtyard and reached the Khilwat Mubarak which is the heart of Chowmahalla Palace. It has a marble platform called Takht-e-Nishan or the royal seat and is surrounded by 19 spectacular Belgian chandeliers that bring glitz and glamour to this exquisite Durbar Hall. This is the room where religious and symbolic ceremonies were performed.
It was difficult to leave this beautiful room but we moved on to the various exhibition halls which included the Heritage Hall of Crafts, Heritage hall of Arts, Heritage hall of crockery and Armoury. Each room displayed a variety of objects possessed by the Nizam and his family from Wood carved furniture, embellished intricate outfits to the portraits and crockery of the family.
After viewing the exhibition halls we walked through another courtyard to reach the Aftab Mahal which displayed the rich textiles, embroideries , clothes , shoes and bags worn by the royal family.
The last stop was the Buggie Khana and the Vintage Cars area which displayed Nizam’s beautiful collection of cars including his famous Rolls Royce’s.
The visit to the palace gave me a lot of insight into the life of the Nizam & the royal family. I admired the Durbar Hall the most which was the room with the chandeliers but every thing else was not something I haven’t seen before. All in all it was still a good experience and I would recommend you go to this place just to see the beautiful hall. Apart from that I was very fascinated by the life of the Nizam and would love to visit his other palaces and museums in the city in my future trip to Hyderabad. but I was not really bowled over by this property.
By visiting the Chowmahalla Palace, I feel like I got a piece of history from Hyderabad in my mind that will stay with me forever.
You can watch the Video of my visit to Chowmahalla palace here: