Royal Pavilion

    Royal Pavilion, Brighton

    Vicky Sartain

    This extravagant seaside pleasure palace was built for the Prince Regent, later King George IV, between 1787 and 1823. Brighton’s Royal Pavilion is remarkable for its exotic appearance inside and out.

    It was revered by fashionable Regency society and John Nash’s oriental fantasy has been inextricably linked with the identity of Brighton ever since. The Pavilion has become one of the best known architectural images in the world. It was conceived as a monument to style, finesse, technological excellence and above all pleasure; and it remains unequalled in its glorious sense of joie de vivre.

    Today’s visitor can experience much of this in a tour of the magnificent interior, which is also home to some of the finest collections of the chinoiserie style in Britain. The palace became a complete work of art, furnished with exquisite French, English and Chinese furniture and objects, and adorned with gilded dragons, carved palm trees and imitation bamboo staircases.

    King George IV would have hosted grand gatherings at the Pavilion with gastronomic feasts including up to 70 courses in the elaborate Banqueting Room, along with balls and concerts in the Music Room. The Italian composer Rossini even performed here in 1823.

    Audio guides are free with admission and explain much more about the Pavilion’s history and the Regency era, as well as guiding visitors through all the rooms, such as the quietly elegant Royal bedrooms, the innovative Great Kitchen and the grand Royal Reception Rooms where George’s flamboyant, artistic tastes are evident throughout.

    Brighton Pavilion, Brighton, East Sussex, BN1 1EE. Tel: 03000 290900.


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