Alhambra

Nice – Cimiez

A little oriental oddity in Cimiez

During the 19th century, the neo-Moorish architectural style was very popular, both in Europe and in the Americas, an extension of the fascination in the West for the oriental arts, and drawing its inspiration from the monuments of Ottoman Turkey as well as Andalusia.

Although already on the decline at the end of the century, this very particular style was the one chosen in 1900 by the Niçois architect Jules Sioly to build a hotel in Cimiez, commissioned by the Vicomtesse de Bernis.

Opened in 1901, the hotel attracted a rich European clientele in search of exoticism, and eager to spend the winter in the mild climate of the Côte d’Azur.

Its many oriental decorative elements, and especially its two large minarets, cannot go unnoticed when you go up the Boulevard de Cimiez.

During World War I, like many other hotels, it was requisitioned as a hospital. The hotel survived somehow during the inter-war period, but, like the other Palace-Hotels in the area, it would be permanently transformed into an apartment building in 1947.

The facades and the roof of the building, the entrance vestibule, the large hall with its chimney, the main stairwell and its lift as well as the park are classified as Historic Monuments by order of 20 June 2000.

The building has also been awarded the “Heritage of the 20th century” label.

 

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