Gawhara (Jewel) Palace/ Qasr al-Gawhara Museum/ Bijou Palace

Gawhara (Jewel) Palace/ Qasr al-Gawhara Museum/ Bijou Palace

The Citadel is called for major monument, (also called Saladin's Citadel) is a majestic site on a hill contains 3 mosques [Muhammad Ali Pasha (aka Mosque of Mohamed Ali), Sultan al-Nasir Muhammad ibn Qala’un Mosque & Mosque of Suleyman Pash], a Palace (Al-Gawhara Palace), and 2 museums (National Military Museum and the Police Museum).

Gawhara Palace (Qasr al-Jawhara, also known as the Bijou Palace, but popularly referred to as The Jewel Palace), which is is situated south of the Mosque of Muhammad Ali in the Cairo Citadel and nearby Bab El-Azab area in which the Castle Massacre took place . To the southern side of this palace stands the palace of El-Nasir Mohammed or Qasr El Ablaq. Qasr Al Gawhara was built by Mohammed Ali Pasha in 1814 to house his administration and to receive guests, and as a personal residence. He used to receive many people in it. Some of the paintings in the Pasha hall of the palace portray the receiving of foreign ambassadors. The palace also contains the throne of Mohammed Ali Pasha that was a gift from the King of Italy. It was basically the government house at that time.

Built in 1814, this was formerly the residence of Muhammed Ali Pasha and the location where, according to legend, he waited while his forces entrapped Mameluke leaders and massacred them as they were leaving the Citadel. Its restored 19th-century Ottoman rooms now contain royal portraits, paintings, costumes and furnishings of the period. It also includes a nice garden.

After the renovation , it is used as a gallery for paintings , porcelain , and other valuable and attractive artifacts that belong to the successors of Mohamed Ali . Of special interest among the exhibits in this gallery are the pieces of the black velvet cover of the Kaaba with their handsome silver vestiges , and the wooden gilded throne of Mohammed Ali with its beautiful carvings.

Today, Gawhara (Jewel) Palace/Qasr al-Gawhara Museum/ Bijou Palace is one of the best 19th century Ottoman constructs in Egypt with Ottoman decoration. However, the palace actually combines elements of Ottoman and European palace plans, dividing the private quarters of the family from the reception areas. The ornamental program borrows heavily from European models. However, it should also be noted that parts of the Jewel Palace are being restored in an overall plan to restore the whole. It is a National Museum of both Military and Police departments of Cairo, Egypt. Just outside the palace you can get one of the great views of Cairo, especially the old part of the city. There's so much to see at the Citadel, but this is one of the more popular places to visit.
Gawhara (Jewel) Palace/Qasr al-Gawhara Museum/ Bijou Palace In Saladin's Citadel, Al Qahirah, Cairo, Egypt
Al Gawhara (Jewel) Palace/Qasr al-Gawhara Museum/ Bijou Palace
Citadel Historic Area, Citadel, Cairo 11211, Al Qahirah, Egypt
Tel. +20-2-5116187

Last Updated on Sunday 16th January 2011