Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Royal Day Out at Buckingham Palace, London

Buckingham Palace serves as the London residence of The Queen. During August and September, when the Palace is not being used in its official capacity, the magnificent State Rooms are opened to visitors. The State Rooms are lavishly furnished with some of the greatest treasures from the Royal Collection - paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens, Poussin, Canaletto and Claude; sculpture by Canova and Chantrey; exquisite examples of Sèvres porcelain, and some of the finest English and French furniture in the world.

The 2011 opening of the State Rooms had two special exhibits. The Royal Fabergé, a collection of over 100 masterpieces by Peter Carl Fabergé, the greatest Russian jeweler and golsmith of the early 20th century. The Royal Fabergé exhibit explored how six successive generations of the British Royal Family, from Queen Victoria to The Queen have shaped the finest collection of Fabergé in the world.

I found the collection of jewel encrusted Imperial Easter Eggs the most impressive in the lot. The Mosaic Egg is without a doubt one of the most sophisticated and extraordinary of Fabergé’s Imperial Easter Eggs.

A special display of The Duchess of Cambridge's royal wedding dress, designed by Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen. The dress is stunning and yet a bit ghostly as it is displayed in a low lit room on a headless mannequin. A short video plays of Sarah Burton explaining the construction of the dress.

Also on display are the diamond acorn earrings gifted to Duchess Kate by her parents, the Cartier Halo tiara loaned to her by The Queen, and a silk flower replica of her bridal bouquet.

The traditional fruitcake is also on display in the State Dining Room.

The tour of the State Rooms leaves through the Buckingham Palace Gardens. Stop at the cafe to snack on a miniature chocolate biscuit cake, a favorite of Prince William and also served at the Royal Wedding. A stroll through the Palace Gardens leads you by The Queen's private pond.

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