Qasr Al Hosn is an ancient old stone building in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates. The establishment is situated besides the Sheikh Zayed the First Street. Its grounds house the Cultural Foundation.
The building is commonly referred as the White Fort or Old Fort. Although, the original building was not white in color, during the 1976–1983 renovations, the building was painted bright white. The structure was built in the year 1761. It served as a conical watchtower to protect the only fresh water well on the Island of Abu Dhabi.
Later in the year 1793, the tower was developed into a small fort by the emperor Shakhbut bin Dhiyab Al Nahyan. During that time, the fort was his permanent residence. The fort we see today is the result of major extensions made in the late 1930s. This was possible as aid was provided by the income generated for granting the first oil license in Abu Dhabi.
The fort remained the palace of the Emir. Therefore, it is named Qasr al-Hosn, meaning Palace fort. It served as the seat of government until the year 1966. Over the years, the fort has been developed many times. As of today, it is partially open for the public.
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