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Modern Palaces
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TOPIC: Modern Palaces
#48860
Modern Palaces 1 Year, 8 Months ago  
A couple of years ago, I had the opportunity to take some pictures of actual palaces. Now that some time has passed, I would like to share those pictures just to show what they looked like.

Please, no politics. I really want this to be about the architecture.

jackattack
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Last Edit: 2013/01/15 15:29 By jackattack.
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#48861
Re:Modern Palaces 1 Year, 8 Months ago  
This is the Perfume Palace, outside Baghdad.

It practically pops up out of the desert, and the geography is very different depending on which direction you approach from.








jackattack
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#48885
Re:Modern Palaces 1 Year, 8 Months ago  
One of the more intact chandeliers inside the Perfume Palace.

From a distance, they looked very nice. Up close, you realized they were made of cheap metal and strings of plastic beads on fishing wire.

The dome in the ceiling on the first floor is a good example of the ornate decoration on the ceilings. The walls and floors were marble, very nice but full of little build flaws. (RP note -- walking on marble all day hurts after awhile.)

Unfortunately, that's all that could be photographed inside this palace.

There were three main levels inside. Each had a circular ballroom, with rectangular rooms in the front, back, and sides. None of the ballrooms had windows to the outside. There were some balconies at the back of the building.

The first floor was a single high-ceiling story, with a swimming pool set into the floor.

The second level was two or three stories high, and the ballroom ceiling was a dome supported by a massive central pillar with a flat base that you could sit on. There was a gallery around the back half of the ballroom, a standard floor above the ballroom floor, for VIPs to look out over the crowds of party-goers. There were pillars against the walls, which were discovered to be decorative only -- they were actually hollow and full of sand.

The third floor was another two-story-plus level, with an unsupported dome and columns around the perimeter.






jackattack
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Last Edit: 2013/01/16 21:40 By jackattack.
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#48917
Re:Modern Palaces 1 Year, 8 Months ago  
The front of the Perfume Palace features a poem, in cut metal letters mounted on white marble, about musk. Very striking. Also shown, one of the two massive columns framing the front of the palace.

A facing view of the lettering, above the front doors.


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#48918
Re:Modern Palaces 1 Year, 8 Months ago  
The dome on top of the palace (coincidentally, the dome of the third level ballroom).

I'm not sure what the purple stone is, but it was coming off in places. The second picture shows concrete underneath, and anchor points for the stone tiles. (Plus, a ladder going up over the dome!)

As it turns out, most of the "stonework" in the modern palaces was just stone tile, rather than the massive blocks you would see in ancient structures. Given the rate at which tiles were falling and/or breaking in place, it must have required fairly constant maintenance.

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Last Edit: 2013/01/18 15:59 By jackattack.
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#49055
Re:Modern Palaces 1 Year, 8 Months ago  
Okay, the last of the Perfume Palace pictures.

The difference between a clear day and a dusty day. That's not a sandstorm the way one might think of one -- howling winds, scouring sand, everybody hunkering down until it passes. It's just a dusty day, and the dust hangs in the air like a thin fog. Visibility is a few hundred yards, and the air is... chewy.

Another note about the desert. Most Americans will tell you that the desert gets cold at night, cold enough that you'll need a jacket and blankets. That's the "high desert", the kind you'll find in the American southwest. A desert near sea level doesn't get cold -- it just cools down to a brisk 90-95F.

Next up: the Victory Over America Palace


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#49061
Re:Modern Palaces 1 Year, 8 Months ago  
One palace I've got on my bucket list in the Taj Mahal...
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Stefan Pokorny

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