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The Borujerdi House: A Masterpiece of Iranian Architecture

A House with Rich History and Intricate Design

The Borujerdi House is the most famous and important historical house in Iran and one of the best tourist attractions in Kashan. It is known as a symbol of traditional Iranian architecture. In this article, we will thoroughly examine the extraordinary and unique features of the Borujerdi House in Kashan.

History of the Borujerdi House

The Borujerdi House is recognized as one of the most beautiful buildings remaining from the Qajar era. It was constructed in 1292 by Sayed Hasan Natanzi (Borujerdi), a merchant from Natanzi, in the city of Kashan. This house spans 1700 square meters and was registered as number 1083 in the national heritage list in the year 1354. Additionally, in 2015 and 2016, it was selected as a popular tourist attraction by UNESCO.

The Unique Architecture of the Borujerdi House

Ali Maryam Kashani, a skilled and adept architect of the Qajar era, was responsible for the design and construction of this mansion. The Borujerdi House stands as one of the most prominent historical buildings in Iran, showcasing the intricacies and features of Islamic Iranian architecture throughout. Special attention was given to traditional Iranian design in the construction of this grand building, and the interior decorations were meticulously crafted with great precision.

Interior Space of the Borujerdi House

Interior Space of the Borujerdi House in Kashan, Iran
Interior Space of the Borujerdi House in Kashan, Iran (photo by Wikipedia)

One of the most fascinating aspects of the Borujerdi House is the display of art and creativity by Sani ol Molk and Kamal ol Molk. The paintings and plasterwork in this mansion, created by these two renowned Iranian artists, are considered masterpieces of Iranian art in terms of aesthetic principles. Throughout this grand historical mansion, one can see the taste and genuine art of Iran, reminding us of the culture, civilization, and glorious history of this land.

The paintings in this mansion are uniquely executed using different techniques, with oil and watercolor.

During your visit to the Borujerdi House, pay attention to the details and intricacies. From the moment you enter, you’ll be amazed by all the artistic taste and creativity. After climbing several steps, you reach the main courtyard, at the center of which lies a large pond. Around this courtyard, there are paintings and plasterworks featuring fruit and various foods.

Architecture of the Borujerdi House

Entering any part of the Borujerdi House is an extraordinary and valuable experience. Each part of the building has its own unique paintings and plasterworks, and the most important point is that the decorations of each section tell a special and historical story.

In designing and crafting the decorations of part of the building, great attention was paid to the business of the house owner. Items that Sayed Hasan Borujerdi traded with and also special gifts he had received from dignitaries are recorded in plasterwork, playing an extraordinary role in the beauty of this masterpiece of Iranian architecture.

Every detail and element used in this building is a symbol of pure Iranian art, and the smallest parts and decorations represent years of genius and creativity of the architects and artists of the Qajar era. Every part of this house tells a historical legend, and as you enter each section, a charming story will form in your mind.

Adaptation to Kashan’s Desert Climate

Borujerdi House in Kashan
Borujerdi House in Kashan

Considering that Kashan is a city in the heart of the desert, there has always been an effort, from the past to the present, to design buildings in a way that keeps the interior of the houses cooler and more pleasant during the hot seasons, and warmer than the outside air during the cold and winter seasons. The Borujerdi House was also designed and built in accordance with the climatic conditions of this region. On the hottest days of summer, cool and pleasant air is directed towards the basements through wind catchers located on the rooftop, creating a very balanced and delightful indoor environment.

For the construction of this building, raw bricks were used, and all the main structural elements (pillars, walls, and coverings) are made of raw brick with a mortar of mud or plaster or a combination of both. Khatam tiles with various shapes and designs have been used in the fa├žades, lower parts of the walls (ezar), and floorings. The facades of the buildings are also finished with a straw-mud plaster accompanied by various plasterworks.

In the construction process of the Borujerdi House, which dates back to the year 1292 in the Islamic lunar calendar, more than 150 builders and artists in plasterwork and mirror work were involved over 18 years, employing all the principles of traditional Iranian architecture to perfection. The Borujerdi House, with its variety of intricate and artistic decorations and the remarkable genius and creativity of its architecture, is arguably the most famous and important historical house in Iran, known as the symbol of the Iranian house. This building encompasses all the ideals of a historical mansion and leaves an extraordinary experience of witnessing authentic Iranian architecture in your memory.

The Various Parts of the Borujerdi House in Kashan

Inside the Borujerdi House in Kashan
Inside the Borujerdi House in Kashan

The Borujerdi House consists of two separate sections, the Andaruni (interior) and Biruni (exterior), which are completely separate from each other, but share a common entrance vestibule and portal. The building is two-storied, but due to the presence of a basement or underground section, it extends to three stories in the southern part.

The Borujerdi mansion has three entrances: one as the main entrance, one for religious ceremonies, and one for the entrance and exit of guests. Interestingly, this historic house has two sections for summer and winter living, where the residents would stay according to the seasonal changes in weather.

Other main parts of this grand structure include the vestibule, basement or underground, corridors, an open courtyard, and a covered one, all arranged beautifully alongside each other.

The Exterior Part of the Borujerdi House

In the exterior section, there is a large courtyard at the center, flanked by buildings on both sides. The winter and summer rooms, the entrance corridor, windcatchers, and a covered hall with a skylight, all are located in this exterior part.

The most important and main part of the Borujerdi House is the summer section, located opposite the main entrance and facing away from the Qibla (and thus, the sun). This section includes the main hall, two rooms, two secondary covered spaces, one main covered space, two alcoves, a Shah Neshin (royal sitting area), and a Tanbi Hall. At its center, there is a dome with beautiful skylights and exquisite Muqarnas decorations. The walls of this section are adorned with Russian-style paintings and extraordinary plasterworks, beautifully arranged to capture the attention of any observer.

The Interior Part of the Borujerdi House in Kashan

The Borujerdi House
The Interior Part of the Borujerdi House

The interior part of the Borujerdi House has a northern and a southern section. The northern part includes a living room, a private courtyard, a simple five-door room, a treasury, and a large basement or underground area.

The southern part consists of a central courtyard, a reception hall, and two alcove rooms located on either side of the hall, opening towards it.

The paintings in this building are varied, executed in oil and watercolors under the supervision of the renowned artist Mirza Mohammad Khan Ghaffari, known as Kamal-ol-Molk. The rooftop of the hall features very interesting skylights and windcatchers, which are considered unique works of traditional Iranian architecture in terms of design and execution.

The Differences Between the Borujerdi House in Kashan and Other Qajar Era Buildings

Borujerdi House, Kashan, Iran
Borujerdi House, Kashan, Iran (photo by Flickr)

In Kashan, several other historical houses share the same main sections. Structurally, these buildings are very similar, but they differ significantly in their aesthetic beauty. Spaces like the Shah Neshin (royal sitting area), summer and winter rooms, mirror halls, three-door rooms, Andaruni (interior) and Biruni (exterior) courtyards, pool houses, Harband (enclosed spaces), and windcatchers are present in all of Kashan’s historic houses. However, none of these houses match the beauty and intricacy of the Borujerdi House.

The main fame of the Tabatabaei House comes from the fine details and special intricacies used in its design and construction. This building has an authenticity that is rarely seen in other historic houses. The presence of wood inlay, woodworking, Muqarnas, and gilding, the Yazdi Bandi style of the ivans, and the plaster paintings give the building a special charm. The use of unique decorations, plasterworks, paintings, mirror works, colored glasses, etc., create an extraordinary scene, setting the stage for an exciting and memorable trip to Kashan.

The Borujerdi House
The Borujerdi House

Address of the Borujerdi House in Kashan

The Borujerdi House is located on Alavi Street in the Sultan Amir Ahmad neighborhood of Kashan. This neighborhood is known as the historic part of Kashan, and all the unique historic houses of this city are situated in this area. By strolling through this neighborhood, you can easily visit all the historic houses of Kashan and have a memorable tour.

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Final Words on the Borujerdi House in Kashan

Rooftop of the Borujerdi House
Rooftop of the Borujerdi House (photo by Apochi)

Kashan, renowned for its top-quality rosewater and other memorable souvenirs, also enjoys global fame for its unique and historic houses. One of the most beautiful historic buildings in this region is the Borujerdi House, a magnificent mansion with extraordinary and captivating architecture that symbolizes the union of lovers.

The Borujerdi House is one of the unparalleled masterpieces of Iranian architecture. Recognized as one of the primary historical and tourist attractions of Kashan, it continually draws many tourists and travelers towards itself.

A building whose construction took 18 years, designed by Ali Maryam Kashani, with interiors by Sani ol Molk and paintings by Kamal ol Molk, undoubtedly deserves to be acknowledged as an extraordinary and unique structure.

This historic house is a symbol of authentic Iranian homes and is considered one of the most important and main historical and tourist attractions of Kashan. When planning a trip to Kashan, make sure to visit the Borujerdi House and enjoy the view of this exceptional masterpiece of Iranian architecture.

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SURFIRAN Editorial Team

SURFIRAN is an Iranian tour operator and travel agency offering tour packages to those interested in Iran. It provides the tourists with services needed to travel to Iran, offers tours across the country, and assists the tourists in obtaining Iranian visas.

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