In the heart of Skopje’s old town, the favourite spot to everyone who’s visiting our capital city for the first time, or, to those who want to escape from the daily jam in the city, lies a rich tradition of the Skopjans(?), and the history of all people who have lived on these regions as well. From old, craft shops with hand-made shoes, clothes, or ornaments, handicrafts, pottery, and utensils, to a wide choice of turkish jewelers, dresses, suits, and also food specialties that lures the visitors’ eyes, from baklava and other sweets, to gjevreks served with turkish tea or coffee, and delicious kebabs from Destan or Turist. But, through the bazaar’s cobbled alleys is hidden much more than these shops,restaurants and boutics, because here are located numerous mosques, baths and museums, such as Isa Bey mosque. Daut Pasha’s bath, the Skopje’s Old Town museum, Sultan Murat mosque, and others. All of those monument are a great reflection of the Ottoman architecture, that are saved and visited even today, not just from tourists, but from the locals as well, because these spaces are also used for many cultural events and exbitions, concerts and performances.
One of those monuments is Kurshumli-An, the home of the creative documentaries festival Makedox, fa shows of Skopje Fashion week, Skopje Design week, and many others exbitions and concerts, but also celebrations and marriages. Despite the great importance for the cultural life in Skopje, Kurshumli-An, is actually, an important mark of macedonian history in the time of the Ottomans, that remains unchanged in its’ unique design, beautifully designed walls and domes in the shapes of pyramids. Regarding its’ origin, there is no accurate data, but is it assumed that it was built on the basis of some old building from the Turks, or from Mula Musledin-Hoxha’s group, the son of Sultan Selim’s scientist, according to some sources. From the beginning of its’ existence, this An has altered its’ function, initially being An, until 1787 when it was transformed into a prison. Many macedonian revolutioners were imprisoned during that period. But, from 1904-1914 it served as An again. The name is associated with lead(bullet) that was always used to cover the sides of the pyramids. The main entrance is located on the southern side, and above the entrance door there is a porch with a dome-shaped roof. Inside the An there are numerous poles, as on the ground floor, on the upper floor as well, that, in addition with the court, give a mystical ambience and a sense of antiquty and impeccable architecture. The groung-floor rooms served as a warehouse of goods, while the upper-floor rooms served as resting rooms. In the other part of the An, spaces for the cattle were made, and today these rooms are used from the Macedonian museum.
Precisely this yard hosts over 1000 visitors every summer, and is really a place we recommend if you want to see a theatrical performance, gallery or exhibition of handicrafts and to attend concerts, literary readings or interesting Makedox hosting guests worldwide. If you do not trust us, then you’ll be convinced with an award for 4th place on the list of the most beautiful cinemas’ in the world, which aren’t classical, but offer a unique experience and a pleasant atmosphere!