Visit the Impressive Jalil Khayat Mosque in Erbil
One of the most impressive buildings in Erbil, and an exceptional example of Islamic architecture and decorative arts, is the Jalil Khayat Mosque in Erbil whose two 65-meter-high impressive minarets can be seen from almost any part of the city.
Most visitors and foreigners who live permanently in Erbil dedicate some of their precious time to visit this mosque of outstanding beauty which is very similar in style to the Blue Mosque in Istanbul and the Muhammad Ali Mosque in Cairo.
Jalil Khayat Mosque in Erbil is located on 60 Meter Street opposite the Royal Mall and quite close to the center of Erbil. The building of the mosque started many years ago by Jalil Khayat, one of the wealthiest Erbilians, and continued by his children when he died in 2005. The mosque opened on 19th January 2007 by Jalil’s son, Dara Khayat.
The mosque is built on a 15,000 m2 area and its main hall, which can hold up to 2,000 people, is 1,200 m2 large and 45 meters high. Next to the big hall, there is a smaller one for everyday prayers or for the use of women on Fridays and on special religious events.
Because the mosque was build with bricks, most of the building is beige in color on the outside while its roof consists of one large dome in the middle and several smaller ones all around it. Exterior decorations are mostly blue in color with intricate geometric shapes, beautiful patterns of flowers and vines, or amazing calligraphy of important Islamic texts.
On the inside, all of its walls and ceilings are decorated with bright colorful arabesque designs with beautiful complicated patterns in which bright blue, red, orange, and gold dominate, while the beautifully crafted ceiling lamps are really spectacular and they attract the visitor’s attention instantly. Experts from all over the Middle East contributed to the exterior and interior decoration of this mosque.
All visitors of Jalil Khayat Mosque in Erbil are allowed to look around the mosque any time it is open except for prayer time.