This time the mosaic is not one you can find in the Alhambra, like the others of this series, but it is one of the beautiful decorations of the walls of the Cuarto Real de Santo Domingo.
This is ‘a magnificent Nasrid palace built during the reign of Muhammad II (1273-1302) attached to one of the fortified towers of the wall of the Alfareros suburb (Potters suburb). It was part of the Great Orchard of Almajarra, which its remains are the only preserved ones of the almunia or royal rural estate located within the walls of the old Nasrid capital. The Dominican Order transformed and renamed it as ‘Cuarto Real de Santo Domingo’ (Royal Hall of Santo Domingo).
The only part that has been preserved throughout the years, is the fortified tower that belongs to the royal palace. In its interior, we find the ‘qubba’ or hall of receptions. This building’s works predate those in the Alhambra, making it the direct predecessor of the architectural and decorative motifs in the palaces of the Alhambra. The 19th-century-inspired gardens lay exactly on the ancient buried remains of the Andalusi gardens that the palace originally had.
The building currently sheltering the qubba has Exhibition and Multi-purpose Halls, converting the Nasrid monument into a cultural area where a varied schedule of activities can be enjoyed all year long.
The ‘Cuarto Real de Santo Domingo’ is considered an exceptional monument of great historic as well as artistic interest indeed declared a site of Cultural Interest in 1919. Since 1990 it is owned by the city council of Granada.’
Text: website of the Agencia Albaicín Granada.