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“Lovely Islamic house”

Gayer-Anderson Museum (Bayt al-Kiritliya)
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Private Customizable Day tour around Giza, Saqqara and Dahshur from Cairo
Ranked #36 of 319 things to do in Cairo
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: This museum features the items of antiquity collected by John Gayer-Anderson, a British member of the Egyptian civil service in the 1930s and ‘40s, who restored two adjacent 16th- and 17th-century houses decorated with mashrabiyya screens and marble inlays.
Reviewed December 28, 2013 via mobile

One of the best Islamic monuments in area with priceless artifacts by Gayer Anderson which adds richness and life to the place.

1  Thank femalworldroamer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (121)
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63 - 67 of 121 reviews

Reviewed October 29, 2013

I used to live in Cairo and was introduced to this great place by a Cairene. Definitely worth a visit, even if just to escape the 'hassle factor' of the bigger sights...or because of the James Bond film connection!

2  Thank Russell H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 8, 2013

This is the best-preserved and most impressive historical Cairene mansion, consisting of two houses joined together by a suspended passage and housing a lovely and diverse collection of eastern and western art.

The two houses were built in the Ottoman era (one in 1540, the other in 1631), and have been occupied by many different people over the centuries, the last being Major Gayer Anderson, who bequeathed his worldly art collection which the museum now hosts, while in Arabic the name "Kritliya" refers to a family from Crete which occupied the mansion in the 19th century.

The houses, and the narrow alley between them, evoke what traditional Cairo might have looked like in Ottoman and medieval times, with its stern-looking houses entered by stone-carved portals and overhanging with mashrabiyyas (intricate wood-screened balconies). Inside the houses you can also get a sense of wealthy Cairenes could live in comfortable mansions in the heart of the city.

Some of the highlights include the "Damascus room", with exquisite walls and ceiling from a 17th-century Syrian house, and the large and beautifully decorated qa'a or reception hall with and its marble fountain. An interesting feature of this area is that the reception hall is also surrounded by an upstairs passage from which, in more traditional times, women could privately observe the affairs and entertainment going on in the hall below without being themselves seen, via small screened windows. The first house also has a sabil room from which to dispense water freely to the public, and a roof terrace.

The museum is adjacent to the Ibn Tulun mosque, which should not be missed. Together, they conveniently form one of the essential sights of historic Cairo.

2  Thank BobPraz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 26, 2013

Gayer Anderson was a British doctor in Cairo in the mid 30s to early 40s. He combined and restored two homes which he lived in and asked for it to be maintain as a museum when he departed Egypt. He had an amazing antiques, art, and rare book collections which are showcased in the home. The rooms were well planned and reflected not only Egypt but also Turkey, Syria, Britain, and China. I was really surprised how well preserved it remains today. An interesting note is that the James Bond film "The Spy Who Loved Me" was filmed in this home.

3  Thank CSNRWhite
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 23, 2012 via mobile

This is a wonderful place with a wonderful setting and amazing views. Many photo opportunities, and you get special photography privileges if you pay the extra ticket at the gate. You must be accompanied by a free guide, though you are expected to tip him. It's a good idea, because my guide (Ramadan), pointed out all the good angels for best pictures to take. The place is badly preserved and will not last long this way, which is the fault of the government body in charge ( probably true forest of Egypt). The fact the Ibn Tolon mosque is right next to it gives it extra visiting value .

2  Thank Yasmine B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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