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Museum of Islamic Art

6,325 Reviews

Museum of Islamic Art

6,325 Reviews
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saronic wrote a review Jan 8
Zurich, Switzerland17,853 contributions1,639 helpful votes
There are three sights for me in Doha, the Souq Wakif, the National Museum and the Museum of Islamic Art, that by itself are worth a trip to that city. The Museum of Islamic Art sits on an artificial island in the sea and is in walking distance from the Souq Wakif. Before going inside one should admire the building's exterior from the close by Dhow Harbour and the Corniche. When the renowned Chinese-American architect I.M.Pei, by then already 91 years old (he passed away in New York 2017 aged 102) to do this building he travelled for a half a year through the Arab world to study traditional Islamic architecture. A building that apparently inspired him the most had been the Ibn Tulun Mosque in Cairo. The architect also insisted on an artificial island by the sea, so the museum wouldn't get encroached later by tall high rises. At the entrance one has to go through the usual security checks. With the ticket one gets a useful small brochure about the museum. The toilets are before going inside. On the ground floor, where one will automatically first glance at the cupola, the large window facing north, the geometric pattern on the marble floor and the decorative ring above the double staircase. Here are no exhibits, but a library, an auditorium, a gift shop and a snack bar, which I visited twice during my more than 3 hours long visit. Besides the ground floor (or first floor) there are four more floors. The 4th is reserved for temporary exhibits, the 5th floor houses the famous IDAM restaurant (reservations required), so the whole permanent collection is distributed over the 2nd and 3rd floor. On the 2nd floor we will find the themes 'Figure in Art', 'Calligraphy', 'Patterns', 'Science in Art'. The 3rd floor with the halls 11 to 17 has an exhibition about Early Islamic Art (7th-12th), while the remaining halls show art from mainly Egypt, Syria, Iran, Central Asia, India and Turkey, but there are also artefacts to be found from al-Andalous (Southern Spain), Morocco, Sicily and Tunisia. All items, mostly carpets, wood work (carved doors), ceramics, pottery, brass, glass, metal work, textiles and some jewelry are labelled in Arabic and English and there are general informations in the same languages, with good, short overviews. Photography is allowed and one can keep a small backpack.
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Date of experience: March 2020
1 Helpful vote
Alma wrote a review Dec 2020
Doha, Qatar5 contributions
Great sea view. The service is great and the café is lovely. Very fun and interesting . A place for good pictu
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Date of experience: December 2020
Bea wrote a review Dec 2020
Qatar5 contributions
Beside the beautiful building and the area around it the gift shop is the best I have ever seen with reasonable prices. Well it depends what you are looking for but I did all my Christmas shopping there!! A must to visit if you are visiting Qatar!
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Date of experience: December 2020
Tareq Ilyan wrote a review Nov 2020
Amman, Jordan77 contributions34 helpful votes
The architecture and the view of the building are breathtaking, didn’t like the exhibit much tho. Staff are polite and helpful.
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Date of experience: November 2020
JM family traveler wrote a review Nov 2020
18 contributions7 helpful votes
The best place to bond with family... Fresh and cold air during winter season, greenery views.... The sea is clean and sends fresh air... Food was delicious from the coffee shops and restaurant...
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Date of experience: October 2020
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