The Paigah Palaces of Shah Gunj

I went on a heritage walk with Deccan Archive and INTACH Hyderabad in Shah Gunj. Here are some pictures from the walk

The Mahboob Chowk clock tower, built by Asman Jah in 1892. It is a nice little park in the middle of the many busy businesses around it.

The European-style facade of Asman Jah’s palace reflects the then-growing preference for European architectural styles in Hyderabad. It is also unsurprising in its grandeur – after all, he was the man who built a grand clock tower for the public!

H. E. Sir Asman Jah Bahadur

Not all fascinating things on the walk looked attractive. This is a broken defunct water pipe which was installed about a century ago by the Nizam’s water supply department to provide drinking water to the citizens of Hyderabad.

The now-abandoned Khursheed Jah devdi is an 18th-century mansion that experts say would have rivalled the British Residency in engineering prowess and opulence. It is built in European fashion – everything from the fancy flooring to the pressed-paper ceiling harks back to the splendour of its heyday. This is a view from one of its windows.

One of the inner doors at the Khursheed Jah devdi
The previous night’s rain had left enough of a puddle in the grounds of the Khursheed Jah devdi to get a beautiful reflection picture.
Sir Khursheed Jah Bahadur
The outside of the extensive Iqbal-ud-Dowla devdi

A view of the main entrance to the city residence of Iqbal-ud-dowla, also known as Viqar-ul-Umra and one of the principal nobles in the Paigah family. The impressive teak-framed gate is big enough for a howdah-ed elephant to enter easily, and features impressively strong ironwork similar to those found on the gates of Golconda.

H.E. Nawab Sir Viqar-ul-Umara, Iqtidar ul-Mulk, Iqbal ud-Daula, Muhammad Fazl-ud-Din Khan Bahadur, KCIE, Kaiser-i-Hind, Secundar Jung

Detail in the teak door featuring the above-mentioned ironwork
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