An Architectural Tour Of Falaknuma Palace, Hyderabad's First Structure To Get Electricity
A heritage palace with royal finesse, Falaknuma Palace is a 19th century palace which belonged to the Paigah Hyderabad State when built. It later became a regal residence of Nizam Mehboob Ali Khan Bahadur, in 1951 served the then-president Rajendra Prasad, and today serves as a luxurious hotel property owned by Taj Hotels Group.
Falaknuma means a 'Mirror of the Sky' or 'Like the Sky' in Urdu.
What makes this 19th-century palace standout is that it was was the first structure in the province of Hyderabad to get electricity connection in 1883, the year when telephone and electrical system were introduced.
MakaanIQ takes you on an architectural tour of this resplendent palace that is an epitome of luxury:
The foundation of this spectacular palace, also known as the Scorpion Palace, was laid by Sir Vicar Ul Umra Bahadur on March 3, 1884. It took nine years to construct the structure which is made of Italian marble and is spread across an area of 32 acre. Falaknuma Palace also has one of the largest electrical switchboards in India.
The architecture of Falaknuma has a unique blend of Italian and Tudor architecture. The palace is built in the shape of a scorpion with two stings spread out as wings in the north. Thus, the name Scorpion Palace.
While the centre of the palace is occupied by the main building and the kitchen, Gol Bangla, Zenana Mehal, the harem quarters stretch to the south.
The palace has 220 lavishly decorated rooms and 22 spacious halls, filled with the finest treasured collections of the Nizams. The Jade collection of the Falaknuma is considered to be one-of-its-kind in the world. It also has the largest collection of Venetian chandeliers, 40 in total.
The dining room
The dining hall of Falaknuma is famous for its capacity to seat 100 guests at a time. The chairs are made of carved rosewood covered with green leather upholstery.
The palace has a library with a walnut carved roof, a replica of the one at Windsor Castle. The library has one of the finest collections of the Quran in India.
The palace is high above and away from the city centre. This allows a panoramic view of the whole of Hyderabad city.