The Hall of the Kings. Paintings

Five alcoves that flank a large hall were used for receptions and celebrations. Their domed ceilings are its most remarkable feature.

For your interest

  • Gates

    There are four main gates in the wall, two on the north side, -the Gate of Arms and the Gate of the Arrabal, and two on the south side,the Gate of Justice and the Gate of the Seven Floors.

  • The Alcazaba

    It was the residential area of the royal guard in charge of the security of the palatial city

  • Tower of the Candle

    la Torre de la Vela, nombrada en época nazarí torre Mayor y durante el siglo XVI puerta del Sol ya que se refleja en la fachada de mediodía actuando como un reloj de sol para la ciudad.

  • Palace of Charles V

    The decision to build the Palace in the Alhambra symbolized the triumph of Christianity over Islam.

  • Museum of the Alhambra

    The tour of the Alhambra also includes a visit to the museum, with its collection of Nasrid Art, which was found in archaeological excavations or restoration works in the Monument.

  • St. Mary Church

    With Latin-cross floor design and side chapels, outstanding is its Baroque altarpiece framed by large Solomon-style columns from the 17th century

  • Museum in Honour of Ángel Barrios

    Drawings, paintings, musical scores and letters of the Grenadian composer, Ángel Barrios, form this collection

  • The Court of Machuca

    Two round fountains with water flowing into a pool in the centre of the court are its main feature.

  • The Mexuar- Oratory

    Counsel of Ministers meetings and worship took place in these rooms.

  • The Golden Room

    The beautiful woodwork ceiling gives its name to this room, whose original decoration is attributed to Muhammad V.

  • The Façade of Comares

    The Sultan received his vassals at the foot of the Façade of Comares, which separated the administrative and familiar sectors inside the Palace.

  • The Court of the Myrtles

    The Main Canal acts as a mirror that reflects the building structures and breaks the structural horizontal lines of the court.

  • The Room of the Ship

    There are two possible origins of its name: its cylindrical vault or the Arab term “al-baraka”, which is repeatedly inscribed on its walls.

  • The Chamber of the Ambassadors

    This Throne Room is the largest room of the building, flanked by nine small rooms, one of which was reserved for the Sultan

  • The Bath of Comares

    The baths being essential Moorish urban elements, it is easy to understand why each palace in the Alhambra has its own baths.

  • The Hall of the Muqarnas

    One of the rooms in the Palace of the Lions was used as a hall or vestibule owing to its proximity to the main entrance of the Palace

  • The Court of the Lions – Fountain – Water Jet

    The Court of the Lions – Fountain – Water Jet . Alhambra of Granada

  • The Hall of the Abencerrages

    A spectacular vault decorated with eight-point star-shaped stalactites that open out on eight elephant-like trunks is the most remarkable ornamental element of the hall.

  • The Ajimeces Gallery

    It got its name from the ajimeces, wooden balconies with latticework that are found in this room.

  • The Hall of the Two Sisters

    The vault, which has a central star motif made up of stalactites, is the masterpiece of the second main chamber of the Palace of the Lions.

  • The Court of the Vestibule or Observation Point of Daraxa

    The delicate tile decoration and the well-proportioned Nasrid architectural style make this one of most beautiful of the Alhambra Palaces

  • King Charles V’s Chambers

    His visit to the Alhambra impressed him so much that he decided to build an “imperial suite” near the Moorish palaces.

  • The Queen’s Robing Room

    An open gallery overlooking the Tower of Abu-I-Hayyay that breaks with the conventional wall patterns.

  • The Court of the Grated Window

    A balcony occupies the upper part of the south loft serving as a corridor between the rooms and protecting them

  • The Court of the Lindaraja

    Though structurally similar to the Court of the Grated Window, it is more cloister-like. It bears the name of its balcony.

  • The Partal

    A large central pond faces the arched portico behind which stands the Tower of the Ladies

  • The Rauda

    Rawda means cemetery. It was here, beside the Palace of the Lions, where the royal family interred its deceased family members

  • The Palace of Yusuf III

    Outstanding is the long pool in the central courtyard with a lush garden, on the sides of which are the ruins of some rooms.

  • The Promenade of the Towers

    Several towers can be found along the route from the Partal Gardens to the Generalife and the Upper Alhambra.

  • Urban Distribution

    Andalusian and Islamic, the Alhambra was conceived as a city built for the royal court.

Gallery Location

The Hall of the Kings is the most emblematic chamber of the Palace of the Lions . It was an area used for relaxation and leisure, structured around a large vestibular hall, more than 30m long, that was reserved for receptions and celebrations.

The celebrations held in the hall could be observed from the five alcoves that flank the hall, except at the western side of the hall, with access to the courtyard through three wide openings framed by three stalactite arches, following a structural pattern similar to that found in the Hall of Comares. The five alcoves are separated from each other by four small niche-like chambers.   

The Hall of the Kings is divided into three square-shaped spaces with the porticos and the alcoves in the centre, covered with stalactite cupolas that rise up from the general roof in the form of “lanterns” –another typical feature of the Nasrid architecture. These spaces are perpendicularly segmented by large double stalactite arches.

Both the plasterwork decoration and the tiles, especially on the lower parts of the walls, have been frequently restored. The distribution of the spaces and the combination of light and shadows that illuminate the space, together with the extraordinary composition of the opening to the Court, make the Hall of the Kings one of the most intriguing Alhambra palace areas.    

The paintings on the east side vaults of the Hall of the Kings represent sequentially the scenes of a medieval story in which some knights, clearly distinguishable by their Muslim and Christian robes, perform different tasks perhaps to obtain the favour of a lady in a feudal scenario.

The story may be said to start in the northern alcove, be independent or continue and end in the room. Here the scenes represent a chess game being played in a castle, after which the Christian knights, one on foot and the other on a horse, trounce a lion and a bear; on the other side of the castle a Muslim rider spikes a large wild boar.  

From the main tower of a large castle in the upper background, a troubled lady watches a medieval joust taking place, in which the victor is obviously the Muslim nobleman whose spear unseats the Christian knight; on the left of the castle a mythological scene is depicted of the rescue of a lady from the grips of a savage beast.

All the scenes take place in the middle of an extraordinary and exuberant natural environment, with birds and wild animals moving in an environment that is densely covered with plants and trees.


The Hall of the Kings Vaulting

The Hall of the Kings was named after the ten enigmatic individuals whose figures are illustrated on the dome above the main bedchamber. For many years the figures were incorrectly thought to depict leading members of the Nasrid dynasty; till the 19th century the chamber was known as the Hall of Justice owing to the fact that the figures were thought to be courtroom judges.

Nevertheless, it is generally understood that the scene is a realistic depiction of an activity that commonly took place there: a meeting of dignitaries in the presence of the Sultan or leading members of the Court.

The figures, whose features depict venerable westerners, are seen seated in traditional fashion and gesturing while having a lively conversation.  They are ceremoniously dressed, bearing swords and wearing belts and Nasrid style turbans.