Kensington Palace reopens to the public after £12 million renovation

March 27, 2012 at 1:21 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Kensington Palace, the birth place of Queen Victoria and royal residence to Princess Margaret and Diana, Princess of Wales, was reopened to the public yesterday after a two year renovation projection that cost £12 million.

Steeped in history Kensington Palace has been a tourist attraction for years; it first opened its doors to the public in 1899. But the royal palace had a reputation for being ‘stuffy’ and visitors were often left disappointed by the number of restricted areas.

The recent renovation hopes to not only showcase the history and heritage of Kensington Palace but also bring the palace up to date with the modern royal family. To do such, a new Jubilee Garden has been created, which will now be used as the official entrance, and once inside visitors will be greeted by a contemporary light sculpture called ‘Luminous Lace’.

Luminous Lace light sculpture

‘Luminous Lace’ light sculpture

Visitors are also promised a detailed insight into Kensington Palace and the royals who have resided there over time. The renovation has introduced a number of new exhibitions which are set to be popular amongst tourists- I’m hoping to make it to London over the summer to visit Kensington Palace myself.

Queen Victoria is heavily focused upon in public areas as visitors will be able to view ‘Victoria Revealed’ an exhibition that delves into the life of Queen Victoria. A collection of the Queen’s childhood treasures, including her childhood dolls, sketchbooks and even shoes will be on display alongside the wedding outfits which she and Prince Albert wore on their wedding day.

Queen Victoria wedding dress

Queen Victoria's wedding dress on display

Visitors will also be able to enter the Red Saloon room where Queen Victoria held her first Privy Council and view a collection of video footage from her Diamond Jubilee in 1897 which is fitting for 2012.

Kensington Palace has also revealed that the exhibition ‘Diana: glimpses of a modern princess’ will be on display until September. Dedicated to the late Diana, Princess of Wales, the exhibition showcases the fashion of Princess Diana and includes a number of dresses which she wore at royal engagements.

Princess Diana kensington palace wallpaper

Wallpaper design by Julie Verhoeven is featured in the Diana exhibition

The Palace has noted that this exhibition is small in comparison to others but significant because Kensington Palace was her royal home. I believe that although small in size this exhibition may draw the largest crowds because Diana was the people’s princess.

After an enormous renovation in the public areas of Kensington Palace it would seem that the work doesn’t stop there as a private wing of the palace is now under renovation for the arrival of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge who will be residing there from next year.

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