If you really want to know the best model of local architecture in 19th century, a visit to Skenduli house is a must. Everything is totally original and is the most authentic building in Gjirokastra. This is the best preserved house in old city of Gjirokastra, more than 300 years old (built in 1823).
The owner of the house, Nasip Skenduli, a descendant of the family that originally build the house, is an amazing story teller. He will explain you everything about the house and the preserving process in years. It used to be the original Ethnographic museum during communist time, but now the owners have their house back and keep it open for visitors.
What makes this house so special? Its structure shows that this has been the richest houses in Gjirokastra, because it had 9 fireplaces, (more fireplaces more richer the family was); 6 bathrooms, 12 rooms, 44 doors, 64 windows, and 4 hamam (turkish bath). Many rooms are preserved in their original shape and this is amazing.
Even outside the surrounding fortified wall is 17 meters, and is original too. This house is not restored yet by the authorities, according to the owner. The fact that even many objects are original make this house the most authentic and special one in Gjirokastra. You find it close to the Ethnographic Museum, or former house of Albanian dictator Enver Hoxha. Joking about the original house of its neighbor Hoxha, Nasip Skenduli says: His original house has only one fireplace, so his family was not rich, but he managed to rebuilt his house much bigger copying the other houses and taking from them many objects showing the original life of Gjirokastrian people 300-400 years ago.