Royal The Hague, The Hague
The Royal Palace "Noordeinde" is one of many palaces in The Hague. It was build in 1533 and belonged to the "Orange" family (the Royal Family of the Netherlands) since 1584. It has been the home of different kings and queens between for ages.
Here Queen Beatrix usually works "from nine-to-five" (watch the flag, when she is in). Adjacent to the palace are the palace garden (open to the public) and the "Royal Stables'" (see furtheron). With royal events the square is over crowded with people ...
Visiting The Hague you absolutely must to go to Binnenhof! The Hall of Knights can only be visited with a guided tour, don't miss the opportunity.
Every 3rd Tuesday of a month September (Prinsjesdag) the queen of the Netherlands is giving her speech in the Hall of Knights, telling the whole nation about the budget decisions for the next year.
Besides this Hall of Knights is one of the most famous buildings in The Hague. It has a uniquely designed oak roof, reconstructed in the 19th century.
Don't miss the tour, it includes a lot of info about the Binnehof castle, visit to the Hall of Knights, and the parliament building.
This is the palace that Queen Beatrix uses for her work as head of the state. Members of foreign governments visit here.
Originally designed by Jacob van Campen and Pieter Post.
Across the road once stood a beautiful neo-gothic building but that has been torn down.
The Hague developed in the 13th century as a settlement around a hunting lodge, built by order of the Count of Holland. The hall of Knights was the reception and party hall of this lodge. In the 15th century, Philip the Good held meetings here with the Knights of the Golden Fleece. Another member of the House of Burgundy, Charles the Bold, reside here for some time in order to administer justice. During the Napoleonic days it was used as a hospital and stables.
Since the restoration, which was carried out around 1900, the hall has been used for ceremonila occasions at national and international level. The most important ceremony takes place every year on the 3rd Tuesday of September called "Prinsjesdag," Queens day. The Queen reads a speech from the trone that address the policy of the government for the coming year . Members of the Upper and Lower Chambers, Royal House, Ministers, State Secretaries, Council members of the state, Corp Diplomatique and invited guest are present and the ceremony can be seen live on television.
The throne of the Queen is located on a snall dais, where the Lett B for Beatrice is carved on top, coat of arms of the Netherlands is embroidered at the back of the chair. The medieval roof is shaped of the bottom of an inverted ship.. The halls have the 12 flags of the provinces.
The stain window are the coat of arms of a number of old Dutch cities. In the large Rose window over the gallery coat of arms are depicted of the Houses of Bavaria, Burgundy, Habsburg and others. members of these noble houses have played a role in the history of Netherlands.
The Hall of Knights is build between 1248 and 1280 and was very impressive and grand for its time.
Since the time of the counts, the Hall has served as stable , as a barrack and even as a lottery-hall.. But in '94-'95 the Dutch senate had their meetings there when their normal location was up for renovation...
Nowadays it is only used for special occasions like the 3rd tuesday of september when the queen delivers her speech..
Tours are given every day except for mondays and are from 10 to 16 on the hour.
In the Hall of Knights is the throne that the queen uses for official speeches such as the one on the 3rd tuesday in september to open the parliamental year.. There used to be 2 thrones but when Prince Claus passed away it was considered more appropriate to have one throne instead of an empty one.
In the back of the throne is carved a 'B' for Beatrix. When she hands her reign down to Willem-Alexander the wooden piece that contains the 'B' will be replaced with one that has an 'W' on it. Cheaper then building a whole new throne.. And there is already one 'W" in storage..
The palace was built in 1533 and is owned by the Royal family since 1584. This is the place where the queen had her working offices. When the flag is out, the queen is there. You can also visit the garden and the stables of the palace.
Prinsjesdag: what's it all about?
The Queen and Dutch political leaders gather in the Knights Hall in The Hague every September as the historic building is transformed into a scene of pomp and glory. I will explain the history and significance of the nation's annual Prinsjesdag budget day.
Every third Tuesday of September in the Netherlands is known as Prinsjesdag, a day in which the Dutch monarch, currently Queen Beatrix, addresses a joint sitting of the Lower House of Parliament and the Senate.
It is held in the historic Hall of Knights (Ridderzaal) in The Hague and the Queen's Speech from the Throne outlines the main points of government policy for the coming year.
Lower House MPs then gather in parliament, where the Finance Minister, presently Liberal VVD leader Gerrit Zalm, presents the budget and government financial estimates for the coming year.
In years past, Prinsjesdag, or Prince's Day, was also used to open the annual session of parliament, but a revision of the Dutch Constitution in 1983 extended the parliamentary session from one year to four years, so the third Tuesday in September is no longer the official opening of parliament.
The Queen leaves in a horse-drawn golden coach from the Palace Noordeinde, the monarch's working palace, at 1pm and travels to the Hall of Knights in the centre of The Hague. Court dignitaries and a military guard of honour accompany her on the 30-minute journey.
Members of the public also line the side of the roads to cheer and catch a glimpse of the Queen, while military salutes are fired at one-minute intervals to let the public know the carriage is en route.
The royal procession travels from the palace past the Mauritshuis Museum through the Middenpoort (Middle Gate) and Grenadierspoort (Grenadiers' Gate) to the Binnenhof, where the parliamentary offices are located.
The 'Royal Palace Noordeinde' is one of many palaces in The Hague. It was build in 1533 and since 1584 it belongs to the Orange family (the Royal Family of the Netherlands). Between 1813 and 1940 it was the home of kings and queens. Now it is a so called "work-palace", where the queen works during the weekdays that she is in town. She also welcomes foreign heads of state and government leaders there. President Clinton for instance in 1998.
The Palace burned down in the second decade of the 20th century. Luckily they rebuild it in the old style.
The front courtyard opens on to Noordeinde, the street after which the palace is named. On the street side the yard ends in railings and a gate made as part of a major restoration in the 1970s. The gate was modelled on the one erected here by Stadholder William III in 1689. Surmounted by the royal coat of arms, it is opened only for official occasions, such as receptions, "Prinsjesdag" - the day of the Queen's speech and the State opening of Parliament - and the presentation of letters of credence by newly appointed ambassadors.
The offices of the Queen are located in the left wing of the palace.
Banker Archibald Hope loaned Lange Voorhout Palace, built by architect Pieter de Swart, to Emperor Napoleon, when he spent a week in The Hague in 1811. In 1845 the palace was bought by Prince Hendrik, son of King William I. From 1901 to 1934 Queen Emma lived here, while Queen Juliana worked from here during her reign. Queen Beatrix had her offices here from 1981 to 1984, but since the renovation of Noordeinde Palace she has worked from there. Lange Voorhout Palace has been open to the public from 1992. It now houses the Escher Museum.
Everywhere in the Hall of Knights you find small details like these wooden statues along the corners of walls and windows. And hidden between the beams of the roof are so called 'listeners'. Small wooden faces would make sure you'd tell the truth..
The roof is exceptional as well. In that time it was the largest unsupported roof in Europe. The beams support the 38 long and 17.8 meters wide roof on 26 meters from the floor.
They´re actually the New Royal Stables. Build between 1876-1879 to accomodate the horses of the royal family that were housed until then in stables behind the Pagehuis on the Lange Voorhout.
Since 1998 it is also the place where the golden carriage is kept. This carriage is used every year at the 3rd tuesday of september to start the governemental year when Queen Beatrix goes with this carriage to the Hall of Knights to address the people.
Stadhouder Frederik commissioned Jacob van Campen and Pieter Post to convert the old house into a palace in 1640. His mother had lived in the house. The house was converted into a classical style palace. It has been the property of the Princes of Orange since William V (1748-1806). Today it is the work palace of Queen Beatrix.
Just across the road from the palace is this little dumpy statue of Queen Willemina. I am assured by Koos it looks just like her!