Sheikh Zayed Masjid:
Grand Sheikh Zayed Masjid (Arabic :جامع الشيخ زايد الكبير) is located in Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the United Arab Emirates. Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque was initiated by the late President of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), HH Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. His final resting place is located on the grounds beside the same mosque. It is the largest mosque in the United Arab Emirates and the eighth largest mosque in the world. The mosque site is equivalent to the size five football fields approximately. As the country’s grand mosque, it is the key place of worship for Friday gathering and Eid prayers. It is the largest mosque in the UAE and numbers during Eid can be more than 40,000 people.
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Center (SZGMC) offices are located in the east minarets. SZGMC manages the day to day operations, as a place of worship and Friday gathering and also a center of learning and discovery through its educational cultural activities and visitor programs. The library, located in the northeast minaret, serves the community with classic books and publications addressing a range of Islamic subjects: sciences, civilization, calligraphy, the arts, coins and includes some rare publications dating back more than 200 years. In reflection of the diversity of the Islamic world and the United Arab Emirates, the collection comprises material in a broad range of languages including Arabic, English, French, Italian, Spanish, German and Korean. The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque’s design and construction ‘unites the world’, using artisans and materials from many countries including Italy, Germany, Morocco, Pakistan, India, Turkey, Malaysia, Iran, China, United Kingdom, New Zealand, Greece and United Arab Emirates. More than 3,000 workers and 38 renowned contracting companies took part in the construction of the mosque.
Natural materials were chosen for much of its design and construction due to their long-lasting qualities, including marble stone, gold, semi-precious stones, crystals and ceramics. The design of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque has been inspired by both Mughal and Moorish mosque architecture, particularly the Badshahi Mosque in Lahore, Pakistan and the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, Morocco being direct influences. The dome layout and floor plan of the mosque was inspired by the Badshahi Mosque and the architecture was inspired by both Mughal and Moorish design. Its archways are quintessentially Moorish and its minarets classically Arab. The design of the mosque can be best described as a fusion of Arab, Mughal and Moorish architecture.