17:08:01In the city of Hyderabad there stands another marvel belonging to the Asaf Jah dynasty. It is said that Salabat Jung was the man behind the construction of this stupendous building, said to be the first Asaf Jah Palace in Hyderabad. Yes, Chow Mahalla Palace is what we are talking about.
The architecture of the palace and its interiors are so beautiful that one just cannot afford to miss a second blinking the eye. The best part is the durbar hall. This hall has a "Takht-e-nishaan", the royal seat, where most of the major official meetings and ceremonies were held. About nineteen beautiful chandeliers from Belgian dangle in the hall, which are still in working condition. The hall and the roof that are engraved with beautiful design, is a sight to behold. The room next to the hall store the history and the portraits of the Asaf Jahs and a collection of royal seals, badges and handwritten letters along with an exercise book of Mir Mahboob Ali Khan.
As you move on to another room, you come across mohallat , a hall that has photographs of all the royal members of the family. A peep into these photographs gives you an idea of the personal lifestyle of the royal Nizams. There are some beautiful attires like Khada duppatta, chouban , peshwaaz and the saris, worn by the royal ladies, on display. The 18th century Bracket clock of the English has a picture of the king seated with all his guards moving around him. This is an impressive piece of artefact, which is still working and displays time- day, date and chimes every hour.
Walking further on, you come to a room that has a whole display of swords, daggers and rifles used during the time of Nizam. This hall is called as Selaih Khana or the arms and armoury section. Some of the weapons are multipurpose and on par with modern gadgets.
In the courtyard, just outside these beautiful halls, in the garage of the palace, there are cars like Rolls Royce Silver Ghost 1912, Ford Tourer Wolseley, Fiat and a Buick Super Convertible 1947. As you go on explore the palace, every nook and corner of it still reflects the grand, lavish and westernised lifestyle of the Nizam.
The Nizams who ruled subsequently also used this palace and later it was used for some higher official functions. On 10th February of 1906, Chow Mahalla Palace was the venue for the banquet held in honour of T.R.H the Prince and the Prince of Wales. For some time, this magnificent palace was ignored. Today, parties of some of the influential people or higher authorities are hosted here.