from here & there

Summer palaces of Gulbarga

from here  & there

Summer palaces of Gulbarga

Gulbarga is known for its extreme weather. Both summer and winter are quite harsh. But residents of eight palatial houses in the prestigious Aiwan-e-Shahi area, the administrative headquarters of the city during the erstwhile rule of the Hyderabad Nizams, need not worry. These homes are so constructed that entering them gives a cool effect on hot days and a warm effect on chilly days. They have been designed for natural air-conditioning.

One such house is that of the Kandur brothers, Gowrishankar and Narasimhan. The structure has been planned to provide a spatial effect  in the halls and rooms. The high walls and black stone used in construction add to the air-conditioning effect.

The building occupies about 50 per cent of the half-acre plot. Greenery forms a portion of the vacant space. The big and small Diwan khanas (halls) and 18 rooms form the Kandur house. There are four large windows on the top portion of the central area. Two of them, facing west, allow ample light to come in. The other two windows let both air and light in.The house owners say that it may have been constructed a century ago, before the unification of the State, and that mansabdars (local administrators) lived here earlier.

 After passing through many hands and later housing the guest house of the district judge and the government offices, it is now with the Kandurs.

Barring minor repairs, the original structure has been retained. Gowrishankar says that skilled workers had leisurely built the house under the guidance of reputed engineers to bring up this ‘summer palace’. Not less than seven houses have been built in the locality with the ‘summer palace’ as the model, he adds.

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