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Paradise is a garden, and Cairo now has its own

21 September 2004

"The 30-hectare park is a superb aesthetic achievement. Situated at a significant elevation adjacent to medieval Cairo, it provides stirring panoramas of centuries of Islamic grandeur, including the dense geometries and domed mausoleums of the City of the Dead. This cemetery, inhabited for generations by the poor, is revealed in all its poignant beauty, a vast and living memento mori skirting the edges of the city's heartland. The park and its several constructions (including a hilltop restaurant and a cafeteria beside a small lake) embody Islamic building and landscaping traditions to great effect. Scheduled to open in October, the park is already green, cool and inviting. By virtue of its presence, the surrounding neighborhoods have reacquired their prestige as generational communities and guardians of a rich legacy of Islamic architecture."