At the end of Archbishop Street in Valletta is St. Paul’s Anglican Cathedral. It was built between 1839 and 1844 and funded by the Dowager Queen Adelaide widow of King William IV.
During her visit in 1838-39 she discovered that there was not an Anglican church in Malta and ordered one to be built. The cathedral was finally built on the site where the Auberge d’Allemagne, home to the German knights, used to stand but was knocked down to make way for the new cathedral. The cathedral was dedicated to St. Paul and has a huge steeple of 65m (210ft) which stands out marking the capital’s skyline.
Next to the cathedral is the Carmelite Dome in which the original had to be replaced in 1958 when the dome was bombed during World War II.
This small city, one of the so-called Three Cities, stands on a narrow promontory jutting into Grand Harbour.
The land was fortified in 1551 by Grand Master Claude de la Sengle. The Maltese often use the area’s earlier name, L-Isla, meaning the island or perhaps short for `peninsula’. During the Great Siege of 1565, Senglea was protected by Fort St. Michael on its landward side and by Fort St. Angelo on the tip of Vittoriosa across the creek. The heroic role played by its people led Grand Master Jean de la Valette to give the city the title of Citta’ Invicta, the invincible city. Like its sister cities, Senglea suffered heavy damage during World War II. More than 75 percent of its buildings were destroyed. The parish church dedicated to the Nativity of the Madonna was rebuilt and retains its artistic heritage.
The city is noted for its superb harbour views across to Valletta from Safe Haven Gardens at Senglea Point. The stone vedette, known as Il-Gardjola, on the bastion-point served as a look-out post to guard the harbour entrance. The sculptured eye and ear above its windows are symbols of vigilance.
Constructed on a grid pattern in 1551 by order of Grandmaster De La Sengle, the Gardjola Gardens in Senglea offer a panoramic view that includes the docks in Marsa, Valletta, the entrance to the Grand Harbour and Fort St. Angelo.
The sentry box placed on the tip of the bastion, ‘il-gardjola’, epitomises the role of the fortifications around the harbour. On the sentry box there are sculptured various symbols of watchfulness, namely the eye, the ear, and the crane bird. The inscription in Latin assures the inhabitants of the harbour area to rest at ease, as the tower stands guard against any hostile force that may attempt to approach Maltese shores.
This modern structure constructed out of Travertine was built with the intention that the word “LOVE” would be reflected in the calm waters of Spinola bay.
St. Julian’s is now a major residential and tourist centre, and home to some of Malta’s newest hotels. It is now an extension of Sliema although it started life as a small fishing port based on Spinola and Balluta Bays. St. Julian’s merges with Paceville, Malta’s main nightlife centre where there are clubs, casinos and numerous restaurants, cafes and bars. Picturesque Spinola Bay is still used by fishermen whose traditional boats are housed just below the restaurants. The bay is particularly attractive at night and as a venue for open-air dining. The elegant Spinola Palace, built in 1658 by an Italian knight, Giovanni Spinola, is the landmark historic building on the bay. Another fine building with superb sea views is Villa Dragonara, now a casino, on the headland of St. George’s Bay.
The Portomaso Business Tower (the Tower) is the tallest building in Malta. The Tower stands in the Portomaso section of St. Julian’s, a town just north of Malta’s capital city, Valletta. Opened in 2001, the Tower is 98 metres (322 ft) tall, with 23 floors of mixed commercial office space.
The first six floors of the Tower have 465 square metres (5,010 sq ft) of floor space, while the remaining floors have 295 m2 (3,180 sq ft) each. The main floor is occupied by a shopping centre while the top floor of the building is a nightclub with balconies affording views of the island nation.
Built in 1870 as the summer residence of the Marquis Scicluna the Dragonara Palace opened as Malta’s first Casino in 1964. The Dragonara Casino was one of the first major projects to establish Malta as a prime tourist destination.
Now in its 50th year of operation, the Dragonara Casino is managed by Dragonara Gaming Limited; the leading land based gaming operator in Malta. Since taking over the Dragonara Casino in July 2010, Dragonara Gaming Limited has invested more than €15 million to transform and restore the Casino into one of the most prestigious Gaming properties in the Mediterranean. Approximately 350,000 patrons visit the Casino each year making the Dragonara the foremost Casino in Malta.
Dragonara Gaming Limited has grand plans for the Casino as it continues to invest in the property with the aim of creating the most prestigious and established Gaming Venues in Europe. The company is undertaking a multi-million euro investment to convert the building at the northern tip of the Dragonara Peninsula into a multi-purpose Entertainment and Gaming venue like no other in Southern Europe. The new venue to be inaugurated in the fourth quarter of 2014 will include a Poker Venue equipped to host the most significant Global International Poker tournaments, Private Gaming for high-rollers and an Entertainment spot including a beach club during to be used in the summer months.
Mdina is Malta’s old capital city, with Rabat being its suburb. A Bronze Age village is believed to have once stood at one end of the hill where Mdina today lies. The area was subsequently occupied by the Phoenicians, the Carthaginians, and the Romans and became an important urban centre. Melita, as the city was known during Roman times, was at least three times the size of the present-day Mdina. (Zammit, p.85)
Zammit, Vincent, 2011. Malta History & Tradition. BDL Publishing.
The building, fully completed in 1749, is on three levels: the underground level consists of a labyrinth of Punic, Roman and Christian Hypogea with interesting architectural features as well as a complex of World War II shelters with two main corridors and fifty rooms.