Historic sights in Algiers
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A post office might not be high on everyone’s list of things to see, but Grande Poste, completed in 1908 after eight years of construction, is a classic piece of French-inspired hispano-Moorish architecture and is worth a brief visit, even if you don’t need stamps or a phone card. One of the world’s most elaborate post boxes is near the entrance, while the façade carries the names of Algeria’s principal towns and cities.
The building beside the Ketchoua Mosque was once the city's grandest mansions and carries the name of its original owner, Dar Hassan Pacha. Hassan was the ruler or Dey of Algiers, a man with a sense of purpose - in 1795 he concluded a peace treaty with the fledgling United States of America guaranteeing their ships safe passage in Algiers' waters. Before that, around 1791, he began his palace on the edge of the Casbah, but away from the waterside, which was vulnerable and damp in winter. When Algiers fell to the French the house was turned into the governor's winter residence. Its facade was remodelled, and unlike most large houses here the Dar Hassan Pacha was given a…