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Alaca Imaret

Built-in 1484, Alaca Imaret is one of the architectural treasures that Thessaloniki inherited from the Ottoman period. An exceptional building, famous in the centuries that followed its foundation for its intellectual work but also its unique aesthetics, took its name from the colored stones used in the construction of the minaret ("alaca" means "colored"). From the 15th century, it underwent several changes, gradually taking its current form, which is an outcome of maintenance and restoration work at the end of the 20th century.

The Alaca Imaret (asylum) institution functioned as a mosque, a poorhouse, and a seminary. In the two largest of the five domes, there was a place of prayer, while the rest, which was connected, provided space for meals and teaching. At the entrance, there is a portico, which rests on six columns and has five smaller domes. It is located on Kassandrou Street and can be visited, offering a fascinating view of Thessaloniki of the past and especially of the Ottoman years, as it is in good condition, with available many of the architectural and aesthetic elements that made it famous in previous centuries.


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