How to Play the Board Game Alhambra
A board game that I love to play is Alhambra, named after the walled fortress located in Granada, Spain (pictured). It is a tile-laying game. Each tile has a picture of a building or group of buildings, and you connect them to build a walled city or fortress. Different buildings have different colors on them, and scoring goes by who has the most tiles of each color. You can gain a few extra points by placing tiles that have "wall sections" on the edges together--the longest section of your wall scores points. The wall sections also determine where you are allowed to place the tiles.
This game is played in three rounds, and each time it is your turn, you may choose to either collect money, to spend money you already have on a piece of available property (only a few property tiles are available at a time), to "renovate" your city by moving tiles to better placements (usually to improve your wall), or to play a tile that you purchased previously, but put in a holding area.
The game is colorful, easy to learn and pretty fast-paced, once the players know what they are doing. Some of the games we play take several hours, but this game seems to go pretty fast, even with six people playing (not many games can play six, so that's another plus). There is strategy, so it's not TOO easy, and it's never the same game twice, so that will keep it interesting. All in all, I would highly recommend Alhambra for ages of about 12 and up.
Image Credit » http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Alhambra_in_the_evening.jpg