Golden Palace Monastery – Shwenandaw Kyaung Mandalay
Shwenandaw monastery Mandalay Myanmar

Golden Palace Monastery – Shwenandaw Kyaung Mandalay

Golden Palace Monastery or Shwenandaw Kyaung is situated at the base of Mandalay hill not far from Kuthodaw pagoda. Originally, Shwenandaw Kyaung was and apartment of Mandalay Royal Palace. Mandalay Royal Palace was founded by King Mindon in 1857 when he moved his capital from Amarapura to Mandalay. There were 114 teak wood buildings in the Royal Palace.

Shwenandaw monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Shwenandaw monastery Mandalay Myanmar

All wooden buildings are in Myanmar typical architecture and well decorated with intricate wood curving and gilded. King Mindon passed away in 1880, his son King Thibaw decided to move King Mindon’s sleeping chamber to present site and donated to venerable monk to use as a meditation center. And named Shwenandaw Kyaung : Shwe means gold, nandaw means royal palace, kyaung means monastery. Shwenandaw kyaung means Golden Palace Monastery.

Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar

It is said that Thibaw used to come here for meditation. Originally the whole building was gilded in real gold leaves, now under the celling outside and the whole inner body can see original it.

Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Original gold at Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar

19th century wooden building used very few nails. The wooden bungalow has 5 stairs, stairs are made of concrete. The main building is divided into two parts, meeting room to accept visitors and living room.

Concrete stair of Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar (2)
Concrete stair of Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar

At the base, the exterior line of wooden pillars are supported by elegance dragons. Beautiful teak pillars inside the building with original gold paint support the whole bungalow from the base to the top. At the center of the building there is Buddha statue on the alter, in which it was the place of Lion throne of King Mindon.

Teak pillars of Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Teak pillars of Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar

Some of the interior pillars with beautiful intricate wood curving narrate about Jataka. Interior part near Buddha statue, the shrine was well decorated with green glass panels which are valuable presents of Italy. There is a collection of some 19th century wooden furniture in the second hall. Some interior pillars are well decorated bass relief of Myanmar traditional lacquare some in the second hall see beautiful classical columns.

Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar (13)
One of the main door at Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay

Several mythical creatures, spirit, dancers and flowers are intricate wood curving of spired roof of Golden Palace Monastery. Golden Palace Monastery is indeed a veritable museum of 19th century Myanmar wood curving. The combination of eastern and western culture can be see some pieces of wood curving that decorated on the building. Thousands of spirit figures can be find as well as many angels.

Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar (13)
Spirits on roof of Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Master piece of wood curving Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar

It is quite clear that wood curving mainly decorated on the panel of the main doors are not oriental Myanmar traditional design, highly influenced by western floral design. Many statues on the inner and outer walls of the building are very special as those are not single figures. One statue is step on the hand of another statue point out the union of living being.
Next to the main wooding building there are 2 brick building as the place had been used as monastery until 1996.

Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar
combination of east and west culture at Golden Palace Monastery Mandalay Myanmar

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