The beautiful Hazrat Sultan Mosque, located in Nur-Sultan, the Capital City of Kazakhstan, is the national mosque of the country and the largest mosque in Central Asia. Built in classic Islamic style with traditional Kazakh ornamentation, it was opened on 6 July 2012 and named Hazrat Sultan or Holy Sutan by the president of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev.
It was the honourific of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi, one of the epithets of Sufi sheikh, known as Hazrat Sultan, the poet who lived in the XII century and authored Divan-i Hikmet. It is said that the country was introduced to Islam by him, and a mausoleum was erected over his grave in Turkestan.
Construction of the massive Hazrat Sultan Mosque began in June 2009, and from time to time, 1000 to 1500 workers were engaged for its construction. Located on the right bank of the River Yesil or Ishim and very near to Independence Square, the Palace of Independence, Kazakh Eli Monument, and the pyramidal Palace of Peace and Reconciliation, the area of the colossal mosque is across 11 hectares (110,000 sq m) and the total construction area is around 193,750 square feet (18,000 sq m). Constructed to accommodate 10,000 people, and considered by many as an amazing structure for its immense size and dignified beauty, the mosque is crowned withthe largest dome in Kazakhstan with a height of 168 feet (51 m) and a diameter of 92 feet (28.1 m) at the base. Apart from the magnificent central dome, Hazrat Sultan Mosque also has eight smaller domes with diameters of 34 feet (10.45 m) and 25 feet (7.6 m), and peaks, and four 252 feet (77 m) tall minarets at the four corners. In addition to the main prayer hall located under the central dome, it also provides a hall for women on the third floor, the traditional ablution room, a wedding hall, and a room for reading Quran, and sitting in educational groups.
Constructed in the traditional Islamic architectural style, the Hazrat Sultan Mosque is distinguished by its lightless and airiness, combined with elegance, which makes it a gracefully dignified building resembling a fabulous oriental palace, descended from the pages of fairy tales.
Seemingly a snow-white palace from afar dissolving in the sky, the mosque gradually opens up its wonders with Kazakh ornaments and Arabic script inscribed on the walls created in meticulously delicate tones. The delicacy of the structure is evident from the elegant arched openings, pilasters, and belts in the architecture.
Appropriately termed as the pearl of Astana, the interior of the mosque is also dominated by white colour, aesthetically complemented by delicate shades of blue, softly diluted with gold. Apart from the Kazakh ornaments, the walls are inscribed with the names of 25 Islamic prophets. The main prayer hall located under the imposing central dome, supported by massive white columns, is elegantly decorated with a huge chandelier weighing three tons. The marble flooring, richly patterned vibrant carpets, the patterns inside the dome, and the massive chandeliers, all add colour to the otherwise pearl-white mosque.
The dreamlike structure of Hazrat Sultan Mosque houses several valuable and interesting artifacts, which included a silver Quran, an absolute copy of a manuscript of the Quran Usman on 162 sheets of 999 fineness silver.
The invaluable item was gifted to the mosque on its opening day by the First President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev. In addition, it also contains the original of the Holy Quran, dated to the 12th-century, and brought to Kazakhstan by Tamerlane or Temur, the last of the great conquerors of the nomadic Eurasian Steppe.
A black and white granite path laid out in the form of a traditional Kazakh ornament leads to the main entrance of the mosque, decorated with fountains and flower beds. The main hall is followed by a spaciouscovered courtyard, also adornedwith a beautiful marble fountain. In the evening, with the backlighting turned on, the snow-white Hazrat Sultan Mosque harmoniously harmonizes with the grand modern buildings located around, bringing a peaceful and tranquil oriental note to the contemporary fusion of a modern orchestra.