Traveling through the United Arab Emirates, you get used to the omnipresent world records rather quickly. Everything seems to be the largest this, the most expensive that and the fastest what-have-you. So to be perfectly honest, I wasn’t that impressed when the tour guide told me that the carpet I was about to walk on was the largest in the world.
As usual, the exact details vary depending on who you ask but it took 1,200 carpet knotters about 2 years to complete the carpet. It has a total of 2.2 billion knots, weighs about 50 tons and measures 6,000m² – almost an entire soccer field. It is so large that it had to be manufactured in 8 separate pieces in Iran and shipped to Abu Dhabi together with some knotters who finally joined the pieces together inside the mosque. It provides space for up to 7,000 worshipers and the carpet’s pattern matches the patterns of the ceiling, especially the chandeliers.
Speaking of the chandeliers again, here is one more photo that illustrates the immense size of these lamps. You can see how small the people at the bottom of the picture appear compared to the chandeliers hanging above them. And from the side, the upper parts also become more visible with their thousands of small pieces of glass and Svarovski crystals.
Despite all the fascination I have with these chandeliers, I think they only look so good inside the mosque. I can’t imagine having an obviously smaller version of one of those inside my living room, it would just look out of place.
As usual, you can find these and some other photos from inside Sheikh Zayed Mosque in the Abu Dhabi Gallery. I also took a lot of photos outside, but who knows when I’ll post those.