Mumbai’s Historic core

Gateway of Mumbai

Gateway of Mumbai is regarded to be the starting point for most tourists who want to travel around the Mumbai city. It is one of India’s most unique landmarks situated in the city


The Scottish architect George Wittet combined the elements of the Roman triumphal arch and the 16th-century architecture of Gujarat. The monument’s design is a combination of Hindu and Muslim architectural styles. The arch is of Muslim style while the decorations are of Hindu style


The main objective behind the construction of the Gateway of India was to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to Bombay (Mumbai). In March 1911, Sir George Sydenham Clarke, who was then the Governor of Bombay, laid down the monument’s first foundation. Although, this plan was approved only in 1914, the reclamations at Apollo Bunder were completed only in 1919. The architectural design of Gateway of India was fashioned by architect, George Wittet. It took 4 years to complete this monument’s construction.

The structural design of the Gateway of India is constituted of a large arch, with a height of 26m. The monument is built in yellow basalt and indissoluble concrete. The structural plan of Gateway of India is designed in the Indo-Saracenic style


The structure itself is quite majestic and a hybrid of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.


This 26m-high structure has four turrets and intricate latticework carved into the yellow basalt stone. There are steps leading down to the water behind the arch. The monument is structured in such a way that one can witness the large expanse of the ‘blue blanket’ right ahead, welcoming and sending off ships and visitors.

The Taj Mahal Palace

‘Diamond by the sea’ – the Taj Mahal Palace is an architectural jewel in Mumbai.


The hotel’s original building was commissioned by Tata and first opened its doors to guests on 16 December 1903. The original Indian architects were Sitaram Khanderao Vaidya and D. N. Mirza, and the project was completed by an English engineer, W. A. Chambers. The builder was Khansaheb Sorabji Ruttonji Contractor who also designed and built its famous central floating staircase. Taj Mahal Palace was the first building in Bombay to be lit by electricity.


It is widely believed that Jamsetji Tata decided to build the hotel after he was refused entry to one of the city’s grand hotels of the time, Watson’s Hotel, as it was restricted to “whites only”. During World War I the hotel was converted into a hospital with 600 beds.


Rajabai Clock Tower

Rajabai Tower is a famous clock tower located in South Mumbai. It stands in Mumbai University Fort Campus located next to the High Court.

It has become one of the major tourist destinations in Mumbai. The tower was built by Sir Gilbert Scott, who modeled it on the Big Ben, a clock tower in London. The foundation stone of the tower was laid down on March 1869. The majestic tower holds a big clock which can be viewed from a distance. The clock also plays melodic tunes at fixed intervals. The tower has many impressive features and has been beautifully embellished with oriental figures


The tower was built in a fusion of Venetian and Gothic styles. It is built out of the locally available buff coloured Kurla stone. The tower has one of the best stained glass windows in the city.

History Rajabai tower owes its name to Premchand’s mother, who was a blind woman. As Premchand’s family was a strict follower of Jainism, his mother took her dinner before evening and the evening bell of the tower assisted her in determining the time without anyone’s help. She would then take the dinner herself. Premchand was the sole contributor for the construction of the tower and hence wanted it to be named after his mother Rajabai.

Regal Cinema

Built by Framji Sidhwa, the first film to be aired at the Regal was the Laurel and Hardy work The Devil’s Brother in 1933. As per the Limca Book of Records it is the first air conditioned theatre of India.


The Regal Cinema was built during the cinema boom of the 1930s during which Plaza Central, New Empire, Broadway, Eros and Metro all opened in Mumbai. Opened in 1933, Regal was designed by Charles Stevens, the son of the famous 19th century architect, F. W. Stevens. Its interiors with extensive mirror-work were designed by the Czech artist Karl Schara

BMC Office – Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation

Frederick Willam Stevens, the same British architect who build the CST building located exactly opposite this structure has brilliantly created this architectural monument of city in 1865 under observation of Arthur Crawford, the then municipal commissioner of Mumbai. It is a Grade IIA heritage building


This building has never opened its door for public since then and after about 125 years,

Majestic Hotel Aamdar Niwas


Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus

The station was designed by Frederick William Stevens with the concept of Victorian Italianate Gothic Revival architecture and meant to be a similar revival of Indian Goth (classical era) architecture, the station was built in 1887 in the Bori Bunder area of Mumbai to commemorate the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria.


The building exhibits a fusion of influences from Victorian Italianate Gothic Revival architecture and classical Indian architecture. The skyline, turrets, pointed arches, and eccentric ground plan are close to classical Indian palace architecture.


The station got its name from the then reigning royal, Queen Victoria. The construction of the station took 10 years to complete and was opened to the Queen on the date of her Golden Jubilee in 1887. At the time, the building was the most expensive structure in Mumbai CST is also a ‘World Heritage Site’ declared by UNESCO in 2004


The interior of the building was conceived as a series of large rooms with high ceilings. It is a utilitarian building and has had various changes required by the users, not always sympathetic.



It has a C-shaped plan which is symmetrical on an east-west axis


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Reminds of my days in Mumbai☺️


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