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Archive for the ‘Chapel’ Category

The Royal Chapel of Granada Spain

Saturday, December 19th, 2015

When some of the greatest monarchs of the world die, they tend to pass with grandiose style. This is what the Royal Chapel of Granada certainly exudes – style, class and abundance. The story behind the building of this chapel, which is situated within the Granada Chapel, is a story of about medieval Spain, and surprisingly of death and love.

It started when Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand decided that the Andalucian city of Granada was the most appropriate spot to lay to rest. The couple saw Granada not only as a place of conquest but also as a symbol of their success in creating a strong Spanish empire. Choosing a resting place may sound a little bit morbid, but it was also fitting that a glorious mausoleum should be built for the beloved monarchs. And so the Royal Chapel (Capilla Real) became the burial place through a Royal Warrant signed in September 1504.

The Royal Chapel was designed according to the Gothic style and was dedicated to two Johns, Saint John the Baptist and Saint John the Evangelist. In a way, historians believed that the history of the Chapel is a reflection of Spain’s history. It showcases the evolutions that occurred in the country, particularly in culture and artistry. Unfortunately, the Queen died before the chapel finished. But this did not stop it from becoming not only a mausoleum but in addition a museum, for it was the wish of the royal couple that the chapel would house some of their most precious items.

This decision resulted in a place where modern visitors can bask in the spectacle of the invaluable books, relics, tapestries, fabrics, vases, vestments and paintings of the era. Among this massive collection, you will find of course, the ornate tombs of the Queen and King, who decided to stay close to each other even in death. This ‘togetherness’ may not surprise you initially. But evidenced by what history tells us, royal unions have not always resulted in a happy ending. And it is indeed romantic to know that the two Spanish royalties decided to remain together till the very end and thereafter.

The beautiful tombs of Fernando and Isabella are located in a section that is separated by an exquisite wrought iron screen from the rest of the nave. Together with the tombs of the Catholic monarchs are the remains of their children Philip and Juana. The museum section of the chapel can easily be spotted. Some of the most precious paintings you will find here are the masterpieces of Botticelli, van der Weyden, Membling and Beruguete. It is said that most of the items found in the museum were originally collected by the Queen herself. And what stands out among these treasures? For a number of people, it would have to be the sword of King Fernando or the crown and scepter of Queen Isabella.

Fortunately, if you are already in the city of Granada, the Royal Chapel is hard to miss. The Chapel and the Cathedral of Santa Maria de la Incarnacion that houses it; occupy the central part of the city, and it is serviced by several city buses. The cathedral with its size and grandeur, is almost equally impressive and is certainly also deserving of your visit.

Choosing a Wedding Chapel

Saturday, February 26th, 2011

When you are choosing a wedding chapel, you will firstly need to determine your budget. Most chapels provide wedding packages in a range of prices to suit all budgets, so you should be able to find somewhere you can afford if you look around.

Visit the chapels on your shortlist in person, and arrange some time with the chapel coordinator to have a thorough look around at all the facilities. Check that it has suitable seating and parking for all your guests, and confirm details about the duration and cost of a typical ceremony. You should also check up on the chapel’s music facilities, dressing rooms and whether it has suitable access and seating for elderly guests, or those with mobility impairments. It might also be a good idea to look at the chapel from a photographer’s point of view, and check if there are any attractive gardens or features that you can utilise for your wedding photos. If you are planning on making a wedding video as a memento to the day, make sure you check with the chapel coordinator that this will be allowed.

Once you have selected a chapel, book the date of your wedding and check at this point whether there are any particular legal requirements that will need to be settled before the wedding. Most chapels will require you to provide your birth certificate, and also if you are divorced a copy of your final divorce papers. Some chapels may also ask you for a copy of the relevant death certificate if you are widowed, but this is unusual. If you have changed your name legally, you may be asked to show this documentation alongside your birth certificate. It is also common to be asked details about your parentage, so make sure if you are booking the wedding on behalf of your partner, you have the full details of both sets of parents in hand, such as full names (including any middle names) and also their full home contact details.

There are many different types of chapels to choose from, and as this is a special day it is important to pick a place you feel comfortable with, or have a personal relationship too. It may be the chapel you were baptized, or a place you visit regularly for worship. If you are not already familiar with the routines of the chapel, it is important to check whether there are any other religious observations during the time you have booked the chapel for, as this may affect the basic decorations. This may benefit you if you are on a tight budget, as you will save money on decorating the venue yourself, or on the other hand you may not feel the colour scheme is appropriate for your wedding, and would prefer to change the date instead.

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