CAIRO’S MENA HOUSE – WHERE HISTORY WAS MADE

The MENA HOUSE in Cairo has from its start, in 1886, accommodated royalties such as the Crown Prince of Japan, Prince of Wales, Shah of Iran, Reza Pahlavi; politicians – Bill Clinton, Barbara Bush; artists – Frank Sinatra Charlton Heston, Sarah Bernhardt; writers – Arthur Conan Doyle and many other rich and famous people from all over the world. It is also the place where the wealthiest Egyptian families hold their weddings, sometimes attended by more than 1000 guests. And since its beginning  it has often served as a place where political history was made

An Afternoon at the Mena House

An Afternoon at the Mena House

In November of 1943 Winston Churchill, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Chiang Kai-Shek met for the Cairo Conference, outlining the Allied position against Japan during World War II.

Today it is included in the list of THE MOST FAMOUS HOTELS IN THE WORLD. But its secret is not only its splendid décor, its excellent service and elegant suits; it is the Seventh Wonder of the World, the Pyramids at Giza which are looking down on their guest while they sleep.

Reception Hall at the Mena House

Reception Hall at the Mena House

Even while having lunch the Pyramids beckon

Even while having lunch the Pyramids beckon

Every time somebody mentions the Mena House, or I see a picture of it somewhere,  my heart stops a little - why?  Because two years ago I spent 5 nights  there. No, I am not famous or rich, but when I booked my second tour to Egypt in 2012, staying at the MENA HOUSE had been one of my requests. And I was lucky. Maybe my luck was due to the drop in  tourism, the result of the revolution in 2011 and the continues unrest. Maybe having fewer guests made them welcome mere mortal like me. From the balcony of my room –  there –  very close by, stood the Pyramids – I saw them in the morning mist, in bright sunlight, and at dusk, before they disappeared for the night.

In the Morning Mist

In the Morning Mist

In the sunshine

In the sunshine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At Dusk

At Dusk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That is why  I think the magic of the MENA HOUSE will always be the PYRAMIDS!

More from Egypt soon

IMG_0990Brigitte

 

 

P.S. If you have ever seen the film ‘The Spy Who Loved Me’ you have seen a some of the hotel - it was partially shot at the Mena House

Posted in Cairo, Egypt, Film Stars, Foreign Policy, Government, Pyramids, Restaurants. Dining, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

PHOTO OF THE WEEK – DIFFERENT FACES

DIFFERENT EMOTIONS – YOU CAN BE ANGRY, OR HAPPY OR SURPRISED!

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On the Streets of Cairo

 

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tile bird-3                          Brigitte

 

 

 

 

Posted in Cairo, Egypt, HABIBTI YA MASR | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

REPLICA OF TUTANKHAMUN’S TOMB OPENS TO THE PUBLIC

This is a very interesting article about how TUTANKHAMUN’S tomb was duplicated

It appeared in the AL-TAHRIR NEWS IN May 2014 and was written by NEVINE ABDEL WAHAB

Replica of Tutankhamun’s tomb opens to the public

Tutankhamun’s replica burial chamber (photo :Factum Arte)

A replica of the tomb of Tutankhamun to aid the preservation of the original has just opened to the public.

Since the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb in November 1922, millions of visitors have flocked to the Valley of the Kings on Luxor’s west bank to catch a glimpse of the golden king who ruled Egypt from the age of nine to 18.

Time and the great numbers of visitors have regretfully taken its toll on the king’s painted burial chamber. Their breath has increased the level of humidity inside the burial chamber and produced vapour on the paintings. The heat produced by visitors has its negative effect on the wall paintings as it changed the burial chamber’s original environment.

To protect such a distinguished tomb from further deterioration, in 2012 the Factum Foundation in Madrid, along with the Society of Friends of the Royal Tombs of Egypt, Zurich and the University of Basel offered Egypt an exact replica of the tomb of Tutankhamun.

After several discussions the Ministry of Antiquities decided to erect the replica at the entrance of the Valley of the Kings, just next to the rest house of its discoverer, British Egyptologist Howard Carter.

“The setting,” said Mohamed Ibrahim, the Minister of Antiquities, “is significant as it will relate the complete story of the most important discovery that ever happened in the 20th century.

The aim of the project,” he went on, “is to divert visitors away from the threatened original tomb, while giving them the chance to experience what is inside. Our goal is to create a relationship between visitors and the long-term management of the archaeological sites,” Ibrahim added.

In fact, the initiative to produce a replica tomb for Tutankhamun was started in 1988 by the Society of Friends of the Royal Tombs of Egypt, in an attempt to build replicas of royal tombs that are in dire need of restoration.

In addition to Tutankhamun’s tomb, those of Nefertari the beloved wife of King Ramses II and the founder of the 19th Dynasty king, Seti I are also on the list.

Installing a wall painting of Tutankhamun's replica tomb (photo :Factume Arte)

Work on Tutankhamun’s replica tomb started in 2009 as experts from the Madrid-based Foundation used high-tech 3D scanners to produce a model of the original tomb’s wall paintings and sarcophagi.

The Foundation’s chief engineer, Michael Ward said the facsimile of the tomb had taken three years to complete and the work had involved the creation of new technology in order to record every inch of the tomb and perfectly replicate it.

The replica was completed in 2012 and was erected in its permanent location in the Valley of the Kings in 2014.

The tomb was officially inaugurated two weeks ago. A visitor’s centre highlighting the importance of the tomb and the effects of temperature change inside on its conservation is also provided. It will inform visitors of the problems of preservation and conservation of the archaeological site.

Laser scan of the original wall painting (photo :Factume Arte)

 More from Egypt soon
        scan0001Brigitte
Posted in Egypt, Luxor. Valley of the Kings, Tutankhamun, Valley of the Kings | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

PHOTOS OF THE WEEK – MOHAMMED ALI MOSQUE

THE MOHAMMAD ALI MOSQUE, ONE OF CAIRO’S MAIN TOURISTS ATTRACTIONS WAS BUILT BETWEEN 1830 AND 1848,  IN MEMORY OF MOHAMMED ALI’S SON TUSON PASHA WHO DIED IN 1816.

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OVERLOOKING CAIRO IT OFFERS STUNNING VIEWS OF THE CITY.

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VISITORS ARE ALLOWED TO GO INSIDE – TO ADMIRE OR WORKSHIP OR TAKE PICTURES!

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Door facing Mecca

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Ceiling all in Mosaic

Wash Basin used to wash hands and feet before entering the Mosque

Wash Basin used to wash hands and feet before entering the Mosque

 

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More from Egypt soon

Brigitte

 

 

Posted in Cairo, Egypt, Islam, Religion | Tagged , , , ,

EGYPT’S OBELISKS – WHERE ARE THEY TODAY?

An OBELISK is a tall four-sided pillar ending in a pyramid-like shape on top.  They came in pairs and were placed in front of temples, one on each side of the entrance. When QUEEN HATSHEPSUT, Egypt’s first female pharaoh who reigned Egypt for over 20 years (1473 – 1458 BC) had two Obelisks built to stand in front of her temple in Karnak, they were the highest structures in the world.

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Today one of them is still standing, but the other one has toppled over and broke in two pieces which are on the ground nearby.

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There were many temples in Ancient Egypt and many Obelisks, but the desire of other countries to own one of these beautiful monuments started their exodus around the world. They were sold, robbed, or gifted.

There are 11 Egyptian Obelisks in Italy, eight are in Rome, and one of them is gracing  Saint Peter’s Square.

England has 4 – among them Cleopatra’s Needle,  now standing on the Victoria Embankment in London. As always there were two of them, and both were brought from Karnak to Alexandria, where Cleopatra, Egypt’s last pharaoh reigned - hence the name Cleopatra’s Needle.

The other Needle is standing behind the Metropolitan Museum in Central Park in New York… it is the only obelisk the United States has.

In front of Luxor Temple the Obelisk matching the one in Paris

This Obelisk in Front of Luxor Temple, is matching the one in Paris

…….and the wild traffic on Place de la Concorde in Paris circles around an Ancient Egyptian Obelisk. It once stood in front of the Luxor Temple, built by Amenhotep III , between 1390 – 1352 BC. —- its partner is still today guarding the entrance of the Temple in Luxor.

More from Egypt soon

tile bird-3                               Brigitte

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Alexandria, Ancient Stones, Luxor, Metropolitan Museum NY, Pharaohs, Temple of Karnak | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

PHOTO OF THE WEEK – DO YOU NEED ANY SPARE PARTS?

WESTERN COUNTRIES SPEND A LOT OF TIME AND MONEY RECYCLING

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On a Market in Cairo

BUT WHEN “NECESSITY IS THE MOTHER OF INVENTION” IT DOES THE JOB FOR US!

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tile bird-3                           Brigitte

 

 

 

 

Posted in Cairo, Egypt, TECHNOLOGY | Tagged , , ,

ROSETTA STONE – WILL IT GO BACK TO EGYPT

 

AS A FOLLOW UP TO MY BLOG – ROSETTA STONE WHAT IS IT – WHICH I POSTED AFTER HAVING SEEN IT IN THE BRITISH MUSEUM IN LONDON, I AM POSTING THIS ARTICLE WHICH WAS PUBLISHED IN THE EGYPT DAILY NEWS -

CAIRO POST PAGE 1

 

 

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TIME WILL TELL IF THIS ATTEMPT IS SUCCESSFUL

More from Egypt soon

tile bird-3                           Brigitte

PS. Would appreciate to hear what you think – should it be returned to Egypt?

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment