Travel to Tabriz can be a unique experience. It is the historical, economic, cultural and political capital in the northwest of Iran. It has also one of the most trade spot in the region due to its strategic location on the famous ancient Silk Road. It is a city which has confronted many disturbance and conflicts in the course time. But it is still an alive city which continues its vital role in the country. Nowadays Tabriz is one of the main tourist destinations in Iran and in the world which attracts many tourists all year round especially in spring and summer.
Tabriz houses many historical monuments and magnificent buildings. Unfortunately, many of them have been severely damaged during the repetitive invasions and foreign attacks or due to some natural disasters. However among them, some buildings have passed the test of time and remained to be the unrivaled masterpieces of architecture for which there is no counterpart. One of them is the imposing edifice of the Tabriz Municipality Palace in the heart of the city. The palace is one of the iconic landmarks of Tabriz located in the famous Shahrdari Square, locally known as Sa`at Square or Ghabaghi Square. The Tabriz Municipality Palace also known as Sa`at Tower (Clock Tower) was built in 1934 as the municipal office of Tabriz and used to be the government office by the Azerbaijan Democratic Party after the Second World War. The building was ordered by Haj Arfa al-molk, the mayor of Tabriz during Pahlavi era, to be constructed on the ruin of an old cemetery in Nobar Neighborhood.
The Architecture of the Tabriz Municipality Palace
The construction of the Tabriz Municipality Palace was influenced by German style as it was built under the supervision of German engineers. The Palace features a four-sided clock on top of the edifice and that is why the building is called Sa`at Tower among the locals. Measuring for about 30.5 high, the tower rings every 15 minutes to announce the time to the passengers.
Constructed in 3 floors, the palace occupies an area of about 6500 square meters. From the above, the building is like an eagle spreading his wings, similar to German building before the World War II.
Generally speaking. the main materials used in constructing the building are brick, sand and plaster. In this regard, the north and the east façades are made of hewn stone and the south and the west facades are of brick and stone. The window frame and eaves are also decorated with carved stones.
Tabriz Municipality Museum
Apart from being an official office of the Municipality of Tabriz, the building is also home to the Islamic council, and the first municipality museum in Iran and the second one in the world after China. The museum was inaugurated in 2007 on the 100th anniversary of the Municipality of Tabriz. The museum is located in the lower floor covering an area of about 800 square meters.
The Tabriz Municipality Museum comprises different themed talars and galleries including the gallery of old cameras, carpet gallery, Hekmat talar, the print and publish Talar, the Contemporary Art Talar , the Talar of Calligraphy, Iran and Iraq war Gallery, and etc.
The most eye-catching gallery in the museum is the carpet gallery which no one should miss it in his visit to this palace. It displays 12 magnificent pieces of carpets dating back to 110 years ago. They belong to the municipality of Tabriz which were ordered by Haj Arfa' al-Molk Jalili.
In the gallery of old cameras, one can find some of the oldest cameras in Iran which were donated to the museum by Mohammad Ali Jadidol Islam. The camera Hall is the best place for those who are interested in the history and evolution of old cameras.
In other galleries of the museum, a number of other valuable objects are on display such as old documents of the municipality, gifts from foreign officials to the mayors, books and artworks, administrative and financial documents, Sport championship cups of Tabriz Municipality Team, Tabriz Travelogues and etc.
Moreover, in the south part of the palace there is a large courtyard with a beautiful circular pool in the middle surrounded by tall trees and beautiful flowers. In this place there are some early vehicles, the first firefighting tracks, the first taxis, and some other equipment and machinery on display.
Besides, During the Norowz (the New Year Eve), the courtyard of the palace and the basement are home to several local festivals and handicrafts fairs.
Tabriz tourism attractions near the Tabriz Municipality Palace
In the Maghsudie Neighborhood behind the building, there are some other attractions which are worth visiting. They include the Nikdel House, the Ostad Shahriar Museum and the blue mosque. There are also other tourism attractions including the Iron Age Museum, the Azerbaijan Museum and the Grand Bazar of Tabriz.
The Tabriz Municipality Palace is open to public every day except of holidays. Noteworthy, visiting the museum is free of charge (at the time of writing).
The Tabriz Municipality Palace is one of the magnificent building in Tabriz visiting which must be included in every Tabriz Tours or Iran tours
Tabriz Restaurants near the Tabriz Municipality Palace
There are some nice restaurants with cozy atmosphere and delicious food near the Tabriz Municipality Palace including the Dr Nikk Restaurant, Haj Ali Kebab, Ipek Yolu Restaurant, Emarat Restaurant, Badas Spanish Restaurant, Salar Ark Restaurant.
Tabriz hotels near the Tabriz Municipality Palace
Among budget hotel near the palace are be Darya Tabriz Hotel, Sina Hotel, and Park Tabriz where you can rest during your trip to Tabriz.
However, if you are looking for luxury hotel near the palace in Tabriz, the International Tabriz Hotel, Shahryar Tabriz International Hotel, Gostaresh Hotel, or Tabriz Petrochemical Hotel is the right ones for you.