Falak-numa in Urdu translates to “Like the sky”. Built at 2000 feet and looking down at a sprawling city below, with the clouds for company the Falaknuma Palace is one with the sky.
The palace was built by Sir Nawab Vikar-Ul Umra, a nobleman of the Paigah family of Hyderabad, prime minister of Hyderabad and coincidentally the Nizam’s brother- in -law. Vikar -Ul Umra was not fortunate to enjoy his most opulent palace. There are two stories to how this came about. In one version it is said that the Nizam was very impressed with the Palace that Vikar -Ul Umra was bound by traditions to gift it to his majesty. In the second version , supposedly Ul-Umra was broke even before the completion of the Palace that the Nizam took over the construction and even reimbursed the amount already spent.
This sprawling palace took ten years to complete and when it did it, it contained within and around it a perfect blend of the world, Italian marble, Tudor architecture, baroque style, french style. In short in silence the walls were screaming of the travels and tasteful affluence of its master.
What really makes the Falaknuma Palace unprecedented in all spheres is its unique shape. It is built to the shape of the scorpion, with the wings spreading out as stings in the north and a beautiful sit out forming the tail in the south.
The Nizam used this palace as a guest house till it was abandoned in the 1950s. In 1995 the TAJ group of hotels undertook the renovation of the palace under the watchful guidance of the royal family. Taj has brought back the Nizami look and granduer back to the entire place.
The interior of the palace boasts of a number of unique things. The palace library has an eclectic collection of books. There are books ranging from the essays on the troubles in the British territory to handwriting. In fact this library has the finest collection of the holy Quran in all of India.
The nizam entertained his guests with many a different amusements , one of them being billiards. The manufacturer Burroughs and Watts made two identical tables. One for the Nizam and the other for the Buckingham Palace.
The palace is dotted with jade and marble figurines, rare rosewood furniture,priceless Venetian chandeliers and stained glass windows and Japanese decor. Yet there is the Nizami feel to it.
The beauty of the palace is beyond compare and well worth the visit. You can view more pictures of here.