Marble PalaceMarble Palace – Kolkata

Marble Palace is a palatial mansion, built by Raja Rajendra Mullick, the wealthiest merchant of his time. Also, it is a preserved mansion of the 19th-century era. The mansion is famous for its smooth white marble walls, intricately carved pillars and floors, from which the Palace got its name. Besides, Raja Rajendra Mullick built this Palace with a passion for preserving the exquisite works of art. It contains large volumes of Victorian furniture, Western sculpture, paintings and other antiques such as chandeliers, clocks, urns, etc. Thus, this Palace is a delight for anybody who appreciates good architecture and art.

In addition, there lies the Marble Palace Zoo, the first of its kind to be opened in India. The zoo has birds, some species of deer and other small animals, which adds to the popularity of the Palace.
The entry to this place is free, but you will need prior written permission from the West Bengal Tourism.

Location

The beautiful Marble Palace is present in the Northern part of Kolkata at Muktaram Babu Street.

History

Also, a French architect constructed this nineteenth-century beautiful Palace in 1835 for Raja Rajendra Mullick, a wealthy merchant with a passion for collecting works of art. However, the Palace continues to be a residence for his descendants, and the current occupants are the family of Raja Rajendra Mullick. Nilmoni Mullick had adopted Rajendra Mullick and considered him as her son. Also, there is an old Jagannath temple built by Nilmoni Mullick, which still stands within the premises, but is only the members of the family can enter. The Mullick family still maintains the estate, so it is private property.

Architecture

The whole Palace is built in traditional Bengali style with a Thakur-dalan and big open courtyards. The neoclassical style also inspires the architecture of this place. Besides, the three-story building has tall fluted Corinthian pillars and ornamented verandas with fretwork and sloping roofs. It forms like a Chinese pavilion. The premise also has a rock garden and a lake. The white exterior of the Palace imparts an impression of rapidly declining opulence.

Also, the ground has many statues, a pond with a beautifully crafted stone-fountain featuring mermen and mermaids. The statues provide an idea of what to expect from the house. Scattered all over the grounds are figures of lions and accompanying them are sculptures of Gautam Buddha, Mary and Jesus Christ and even Christopher Columbus. Near the entrance, there is also a statue of Raja Rajendra Mullick himself. There are seating areas all across the lawn, sometimes accompanied by tables with impressive marble tabletops.

The broad stairs that lead into the Palace are prohibited for the visitors; therefore, they are allowed to enter through a side entrance leading straight into the billiard-room. The Palace is a masterpiece with more than 90 varieties of patterned marble on the floors of the mansion. It has huge airy rooms with chandelier hanging, vases, paintings and statues from all over the world. It feels like travelling back in time.

Collection

Inside the palace, the enormous art collections give the Palace the rightful feeling of a hoarder’s museum. Containing everything from Victorian furniture to priceless sculpture to kitschy knick-knacks, the Palace has everything. Besides, it has the floor to ceiling mirrors, urns and royal busts.

Also, the house also has two paintings by Peter Paul Rubens, The Martyrdom of St. Sebastian and The Marriage of St. Catherine. Besides, the Palace has other art collections which include Sir Joshua Reynolds, John Opie, Bartolome Esteban Murillo and Titian. The collection of artefacts is lavish and valuable too.

Trivia

• It is a 19th century Palace, built by Raja Rajendra Mullick in 1835.
• The Palace has numerous Western sculptures and Victorian furniture.
• Besides, superior quality Italian marble was used to build this Palace. More than 90 different types of marbles collected from all over the country to build this architectural beauty.
• Also, it is a treasure of two paintings by Peter Paul Rubens, The Martyrdom of St. Sebastian and The Marriage of St. Catherine.
• The Palace also has 82 different types of antique clocks.
• Also, the zoo inside the premises of Marble Palace is one of the first zoo opened in India.