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Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

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A mosque of historic impact that blends architectural styles and embodies Islam’s message of tolerance and peace
The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is one the world’s largest mosques and a massive architectural work of art that intentionally blends different Islamic architectural schools. It features 82 domes, more than 1,000 columns, 24-carat-gold gilded chandeliers and the world's largest hand-knotted carpet. The main prayer hall is dominated by one of the world’s largest chandeliers.

The late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan built this mosque to convey historic consequence and to embody the Islamic message of peace, tolerance and diversity. He intended that the Grand Mosque be a living reference of modern Islamic architecture that links the past with the present and creates a place of Islamic science and learning that would reflect genuine Islamic values.  
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Key Architectural Elements

Perhaps the most noticeable element of the mosque is the collection of 82 domes, the largest of which is located in the centre of the main prayer hall. The domes feature pure white marble cladding, onion shaped ‘crowns’, and crescent-shaped finials decorated with gold-glass mosaic. 
The mosque’s minarets combine Mameluke, Ottoman and Fatimid styles in a manner that fuses diverse Islamic architectural styles into one expression of art and beauty. 
The use of natural multi-coloured marble creates novel artistic outcomes, including decorated crowned columns where the crowns are not located on the top of the columns but at the bottom. This extraordinary technique is innovative to Islamic architecture.
The colours of the walls, columns and the carpet are harmonised in a manner that transforms the mosque into an artistic masterpiece and a symphony of colours and shades.
Another important feature is the artistic glass work. Mosaic, carved and sand-blasted glass displays traditional Islamic designs of symmetry and repetition.
 

Minarets

The mosque has four minarets, each approximately 106 meters tall. Each minaret is comprised of three different geometric shapes. The first is a square that forms the minaret's base. Its architectural style reflects that of Moroccan, Andalusian and Mameluke styles. 
The second section of the minaret has an octagonal shape, which is a design that goes back to the Mameluke era (13th to 16th centuries). The third section is cylindrical in shape, a design element from the Ottoman era (14th to 20th centuries). The crowning lantern covered with gold-glass mosaic goes back to the Fatimid era (10th to 12th centuries).
 

Carpet

The main prayer hall houses the world’s largest hand-knotted carpet. The intricate Islamic medallion design was made by third-generation carpet maker and artist Dr Ali Khaliqi.  

The predominantly wool, single-piece carpet is 5,700 square meters and was hand-crafted by approximately 1,200 artisans. The total project took two years, including eight months for the design and 12 months for the knotting. 

 

Chandeliers

The mosque features seven crystal chandeliers by Faustig of Munich, Germany. The largest is 10 metres across, 15 metres tall and weighs 12 tonnes. There are two smaller versions of the same design, also located in the main prayer hall. These weight 8 tons each. 
Four blue-coloured chandeliers of similar design and size are located in the foyer entrances surrounding the mosque. The largest weights about 2 tons and is located in the main foyer entrance.

Timeline

Late 1980s - 2007

1996

Construction begins on November 5 with plans to build a structure that can accommodate up to 50,000 worshippers.

1996

2007

The prayer halls are opened to worshippers on Eid Al Adha (Feast of the Sacrifice).

2007

Late 1980s

Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan begins consideration of the idea to build the mosque.

1980s

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Did You Know ?

The night-time illumination on the mosque’s domes cycles from darker hues when the moon is new to lighter hues when the moon is full.

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Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

3600

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Location details

Address

Sheikh Rashid Bin Saaed St,

5th St

Open hours

Saturday to Thursday
9am-10pm 
Friday 4.30pm-10pm

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