How to Play Alhambra Solitaire

Alhambra solitaire uses two decks of playing cards. Alhambra solitaire only has foundation piles, reserve piles, and the waste pile, missing the typical tableau piles gives alhambra solitaire a unique feel.

Alhambra Solitaire Rules

| Players: 1 | Type: Solitaire | Supplies: 2 Decks |


The objective of alhambra solitaire is to build up the four ace foundation piles, and build down the four king foundation piles.


Remove one king of each suit, and remove one ace of each suit to form the initial eight foundation piles. Deal eight reserve piles, of four face up cards each. The remaining cards are placed face down to form the stock.

Alhambra Solitaire set up: card layout
Alhambra Solitaire card layout set up picture

Game Play

There are four ace foundation piles, one of each suit. The ace foundation piles are built up from ace to king, in suit. There are four king foundation piles, one of each suit. The king foundation piles are built down from king to ace, in suit.

The stock is dealt out on card at a time onto a waste pile. The top card of the waste pile is always available to be played onto a foundation pile. The top card of the reserve piles are always available to be built onto the foundation piles.

There is no building on the reserve piles. The top card of the reserve piles are also available to be played onto the waste pile. To use a top card from a reserve pile to build onto the waste pile, the card being played onto the waste pile must be of the same suit, and either one rank higher, or one rank lower than the card it is being played onto. When building onto the waste pile, aces round the corner, meaning an ace may be played on a king, and a king may be played on an ace. When building on the waste pile, you may build in any direction at any time.

When the stock is exhausted, the waste pile is flipped over, without shuffling, to form the new stock. This is only allowed twice, meaning only three passes through the stock are allowed.

To Win

Alhamabra solitaire is won when all foundation piles are fully built. If the stock is exhausted three times, and the player runs out of moves, alhambra is lost.

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