Sala de Dos Hermanas
Historic Room in Granada
The Sala de Dos Hermanas or Hall of the Two Sisters is a room in the Palacio de los Leones. The Palacio de los Leones is one of the palaces that make up the Palacio Nazaríes in the Alhambra Complex, in Granada, Spain. The hall was built by order of Mohammed V and is the oldest room that surrounds the courtyard of the Lions.
What to look for in the Sala de Dos Hermanas
The Sala de Dos Hermanas is structurally similar to that of the Sala de los Abencerrajes.
Three little arches, with mocarabes on the lateral arches and arch scallops on the central arch, lead to the mirador’s chamber. You can look at the Patio de los Leones from there.
Entrance to the Sala de Dos Hermanas from the Courtyard of the Lions
Visitors access the hall through a semicircular festooned arch, which has the original wooden doors. As you enter there are two passages to the left and right. One leads to the rooms upstairs. The other passages leads towards a water closet. It is interesting to note that even in those days the Muslims used lavatories with running water.
The Fountain in the Sala de Dos Hermanas
The hall’s paving is made of marble and has a small fountain with a jet and a little channel that carries the water to the Patio de los Leones.
Dome of Mocarabes
The most impressing element of the hall is the beautiful and perfect dome of mocarabes. Its lighting was carefully considered and it receives the light from lateral little windows. The dome is therefore a beautiful and exquisitely rich flower. Ibn Zamrak wrote a poem about this dome and some of its verses are reproduced on a tile skirting board that has metallic iridescence. The hall’s walls are covered with extremely fine plaster-work on different themes, among which we count the classical Nasrid motto “Only God is Victor” and, for example, a pair of closed hands.
Until 1590 the windows in the mocarabes had stained glass. This caused the light that came in to create a beautiful movement of color throughout the room and made it resemble of the stars which are always shifting in the sky.
This hall was in the center of a series of chambers where the sultana and her family lived, with some independence. Boabdil’s mother also lived there with her children, after being repudiated by Muley Hacén.
Where did the Sala de Dos Hermanas get its name?
The Sala de Dos Hermanas got its name from the two big twin Macael marble flagstones that are part of the floor. They are exactly the same in size, in fact they are the largest in the entire Alhambra, color and weight.
Another theory, although is thought to be unlikely, is the name came from the poetry written on the walls. In one of them the Gemini constellation extends her hand in friendship and the moon approaches her to speak in secret. Therefore the two Gemini sisters, approaching the room, which is where the room could have received its name.
Where is the Sala de Dos Hermanas located?
This website uses affiliate links which may earn a commission at no additional cost to you!
Visiting Sala de Dos Hermanas
For opening times of the Sala de Dos Hermanas see Alhambra Opening Times.