Seville's Alcazar

It's easy to be fooled into thinking this is a Moorish palace, some of the rooms and courtyards seem to come straight from the Alhambra. Most of them were actually built - by Moorish workmen it's true - for King Pedro the Cruel of Castile in the 1360's who, with his mistress Maria de Padilla, lived in and ruled from the Alcazar. Pedro embarked upon a complete rebuilding of the palace, employing workmen from Granada and utilising fragments of earlier Moorish buildings in Seville, Cordoba and Valencia.

Pedro's work forms the nucleus of the Alcazar as it is today and, despite numerous restorations necessitated by fires and earth tremors, it offers some of the best surviving examples of Mudejar architecture.

Later monarchs, however, have left all too many traces and additions - the most mundane of which are probably the kitchens constructed for General Franco who stayed in the royal apartments whenever he visited Seville.

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