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The word "carmen" comes from the Arab word karm, meaning "vine" and by extension this word has ended up as a definition for the typical moorish houses where vines were grown as a way to provide food as well as shadow against the summer sun. These carmens still are legion in and around the Albayzin : austere houses from the exterior, hidden behind high white walls, letting nothing guess about the luxurious gardens and the peace it offers when you cross its threshold. 

The Carmen de la Victoria is one of many of these Carmens which you can find in the Albayzin. Moreover, being a public building since it was bought by the University of Granada you will be able to visit it and absorb its magic.

The Carmen de la Victoria stands half-way up the Cuesta del Chapiz, on the right hand at the end of the Paseo de los Tristes, after the Palacio de los Cordovas.

To enter, just ring the bell : the guardian is not too picky. Then, climb up the stairs and lose yourself inside the astonishing gardens, until you spot the view to the Alhambra which will leave you probably speechless.

The Carmen de la Victoria is property of the University of Granada. As such it is used as a residence for guests of the University and as a place to organize meetings, parties and exhibitions. 

The carmens are in direct correspondance with the original muslim philosophy which encouraged people to cultivate their interior self than to adorm their exterior one. In a sense, the Alhambra is the perfect carmen : a fortress of rigourous cubes sheltering astonishingly brillant palaces.

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