The Queen Victoria Building is just not only for shopping...This fine Victorian building was left to fall into dissrepair until a few years back it was completely refurbished and now is one of the most beautiful old buildings in the city of Sydney. After the huge restoration project on the building it is now a major shopping location.There are over 200 shops here and whatever you like it is here..from fine clothes to to lovely chocolate..from books to ice cream smoothies..This is a place where you can spend a lot of time as there is always something new here..This is also the location of the Town Hall railway station.
The Queen Victoria building takes up an entire city block. The building is beautiful in its Romaneque revival architecture. The building was deigned by architect George McRae and opened in 1898. The building was named after the ruling Monarch, Queen Victoria of Great Britain.
The building has a central dome of glass and copper which gives the interior a open feel.
Stained glass windows are throughout the interior of the building. One window has the ancient arms of the City of Sydney and is quite beautiful.
Inside the building are two mechanical clocks, each one featuring dioramas and moving figures from moments in Australian history. The first clock is the Royal Clock. The clock was designed by Neil Glasser and made by Thwaites & Reed of Hastings in England. The clock shows scenes of English royalty from King John signing the Magna Carta to the execution of King Charles I. The second clock is The Great Australian Clock. It was designed and made by Chris Cook. There are 33 scenes from Australian history, seen from both Aboriginal and European perspectives. An Aboriginal hunter circles the exterior of the clock continuously, representing the never-ending passage of time.
There are also two large glass cases inside the building. The first case contains an Imperial Chinese Bridal Carriage made entirely of jade and weighing over two tons, the only example found outside China. The second is a life sized figure of Queen Victoria in historical costume on her coronation day. There are replicas of the British crown jewels(during her reign). The figure of the Queen in her regal attire rotates slowly in the case.
The building Has four floors of shopping. There are cafes, jewelry stores, clothing stores and more. It was amazing to walk through this building. We walked the four floors more than once. There was so much decoration and artwork to be seen before we even bothered to look at the shops.
The Crown Jewels is another permanent display. They were crafted from the originals that are housed in the Tower of London. There is a life size statue that shows Queen Victoria on the morning of her coronation, 28 June 1838.
This is another excellent display, well worth a look at, especially if you are never going to get to London!
THIS MAGNIFICENT BUILDING IS A MUST SEE IN SYDNEY!
Known as QVB, this beautiful building was completed in 1898, replacing the original Sydney markets on the site. It was built during a severe recession as a monument to the long reigning monarch, Queen Victoria.
The elaborate Romanesque architecture was specially planned for the grand building so the Government could employ many out-of-work craftsmen - stonemasons, plasterers, and stained window artists, and excellent idea!
Originally, there was a concert hall, that is now the City Library. You will find all sorts of stores, from coffee shops, florists, hairdressers to offices and showrooms, I even bought some nice, good quality T shirts from here.
The dominant feature is the mighty centre dome, consisting of an inner glass dome and an exterior copper- sheathed dome. Stained glass windows and stunning architecture are seen throughout the building and an original 19th century staircase sits alongside the dome. As recently as 1959 the Queen Victoria Building was threatened with demolition, thankgoodness this never happened. Every detail has been faithfully restored, including arches, pillars, balustrades and the intricate tiled floors.
Please check the website for trading hours. The shops are open every day of the week.
Of importance, is a Time capsule containing a letter written by Queen Elizabeth II in 1986 to the citizens of Sydney, to be opened and read by the lord Mayor of Sydney, 99 years later in 2085, the year the 99 year lease of the building expires!..........wonder what it will say?
A permanent display in the Queen Victoria building is the 'Imperial Bridal Carriage', believed to be the only one of its kind outside of China. This beautiful carriage was created by more than 100 artists on more than 300 ton of raw jade. The finished weight of the carriage is approx two tonnes.
A MUST SEE!
LOCATION....Level 2, North End
The stained glass windows here are beautiful. The one in my photo, faces George Street. It is known as a cartwheelwindow. It shows part of the ancient coat of Arms of Sydney.
Location.. Level One and two where the centre dome area is.
The Great Australia clock is another clock that should not be missed!
Located on the northern side of the centre dome, it is the world's largest hanging animated turret clock!
It took 4 years to build at a cost of $1.5million, and was installed in the year 2000.
The clock chimes hourly and half past the hour.
This clock tells the story of Australia from the perspectives of the Aboriginal & European settlers. One of the features, is the Aboriginal figure representing the 'passing of time' This figure travels permanently around the clock, representing the continuous passage of time. As he passes the illustrated scenes, many animations are activated.
If you do not wish to wait for it to begin, ......DO A GOOD DEED
and put a $2 donation in the Guide Dog named "mitch' who sits infront of the clock. This will activate a two minute animation of the top canopy carousel. The money is then donated to training Guide dogs for the Blind.
Scenes that you will see are..............
1. Aborigines before european settlement.
2. Captain cook landing in 1770.
3. Second fleet landing 1790.
4. Crossing the Blue Mountains.
5. the taking of the children.
7. Judgement of Myall Creek massacre
8. The black line, Tasmania, 1830.
9. annual blessing Torres Strait islands
10. Eureka stockade.
11. Battlefields of 1861
12. Lords at London
13. Opening of Parliament 1901
14. Soldiers return to the outback 1945.
15. Unity 1999.
I stood and watched this quite a few times, it is so well done, simply amazing!
Something that you shouldn't miss in the Queen Victorian building, is the two clocks.
Make sure that you are standing where you have a good view when it chimes!
This one, the ROYAL CLOCK was installed in 1986. It is a Royal Automated clock that chimes on the hour daily between 9am - 9pm.
Once this marvellous hanging clock has finished chiming, then it displays a series of mechanically moving tableaux of British kings and queens every hour on the hour. This "exhibition" is heralded by loud trumpeters and ends with the beheading of Charles I.
It is wonderful seeing all the doors on the clock open, and the scenes being acted!
NOT TO BE MISSED!
This is indeed a beautiful place to shop, browse and eat. It has been described as "The most beautiful shopping centre in the world" by none other than Pierre Cardin!
The original building was completed in 1898 and it was completely refurbished and re-opened in 1984, now housing over 200 shops, and also many restaurants and cafes. We ate a lovely lunch in here at the Old Vienna Coffee House.
I had heard of the magnificence of the Queen Victoria Building (QVB) and wanted to explore the building so dear to the hearts of Sydneysiders.
We caught the train from near our hotel and alighted at the Town Hall station. We followed the signs and suddenly we found ourselves in the lower ground floor of the huge structure. In a way it was a pity that we arrived that way, as it would have been better for “first look” to walk towards the building from ground level and see the vastness of the building that fills an entire city block.
Over a couple of hours we walked most of the interior building and window shopped - and there is an amazing array of shops from the chain stores like Country Road and Esprit that can be seen in almost any shopping centre in Australia, to the quirky arty crafty shops and many in between. The QVB is also home to the ABC Shop where many fine books; CD’s, DVD’s and lots more await your pleasure. There are up market cafes and coffee shops and a few grab and go eateries and all surrounded by late 19th century grandeur.
What sets the QVB apart from the many shopping centers is the opulence of the building itself. From the cast iron balconies and magnificent stairwells to the stained glass windows, the dome and the multi faced clocks that are such a distinctive feature of the building.
Once outside there is a small public area containing a large statue of Queen Victoria. In Melbourne I like to tell the yarn about that explains that during the renovation of the building, the owners wanted a statue of Q Vic, so they travelled to Melbourne and offered to buy OUR statue that overlooks the city of Melbourne from the banks of the Yarra River - no deal they were told. So they hunted the world looking for a cheap statue and found the one that now graces the entrance to the QVB in the Republic of Ireland where statues of the late queen are considered passé
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