Kala Ghoda is renowned for its heritage buildings and that is one of the main attractions that bring people here from all walks of life. You may be a local, or from a different state in India or a complete foreigner you will fall in love with the buildings and the architecture that you see around. Thanks to the Kala Ghoda Association that they work hard to ensure that the vicinity is always looking great and visitors can explore Kala Ghoda in a better way.
Some snapshots of some heritage buildings that you will find here.
Watson’s Hotel also known as Esplanade Mansion can completely fool you with it’s current appearance. This dilapidated structure is India’s oldest surviving cast iron building. Named after John Watson, the original owner, the building was fabricated in England, but constructed in Bombay between 1860-1863. The building resembles London’s Crystal Palace and the striking features of this building is wide open balconies that connected guest rooms. It was here that Mark Twain wrote Following the Equator. The building was only open to Europeans. However, when Jamshetji Tata opened The Taj Hotel in 1903, it was the end of Watson’s Hotel. Currently, building has 97 commercial establishments with chambers of lawyers for Mumbai Civil and Session Courts and the Mumbai High Court.
The Army & Navy Building stands right next to the Watson’s Hotel. (In the picture you can see Watson’s Hotel on the extreme right).
The David Sassoon Library is a famous library and heritage structure built in 1870 by Albert Sassoon, designed by J. Campbell and G.E. Gosling for the Scott McClelland and Company.
The Jehangir Art Gallery is one of the oldest art galleries in Bombay and India, founded by Sir Cowasji Jehangir in 1952. The structure accommodates four exhibition halls and a popular cafe called Samovar which resembles the socialist culture of 1970s. Entry is free.
Established in 1856, Elphinstone College is one of the oldest colleges of the University of Bombay. The exterior architecture of the building has Romanesque Transitional style and it is a Grade 1 Heritage structure. During the British Raj, Elphinstone College was among the most notable colleges in India producing notable alumni like Dr. Bhim Rao Ambedkar, Jamshetji Tata, Pherozshah Mehta and Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Dadabhai Naoroji, Kishori Amonkar, Dr. Homi Bhabha, Bhulabhai Desai, P.L. Deshpande, Gopal Krishna Gokhale, Vijay Merchant, and many more. Although, I am not as popular as these great people, but I am glad to say that I am a part of this college as I did my graduation through Elphinstone College.