Marlborough House is almost 300 years old and has the status of a Royal Palace. It has been occupied over the years by some five Dukes and Duchesses of Marlborough, three Dowager Queens of the United Kingdom, three Princes of Wales who later became Kings of the United Kingdom and Prince Leopold, who became King of the Belgians.
Sir Christopher Wren, the Surveyor of the Queen’s Work was commissioned in 1709 to draw up the plans for Marlborough House, which was completed in 1711.
The Fine Rooms of Marlborough House contain exquisite murals, tapestries, paintings and sculptures which relay the history of the building and its various occupants over many centuries.
The gardens retain their 18th century layout of gravel paths and grass lawns. Weather permitting, visitors can also see Queen Mary’s thatched revolving summer house and the Royal Pet Cemetery of Queen Alexandra.
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Head of the Commonwealth, made Marlborough House available to the Commonwealth in 1959. It became home to the Commonwealth Secretariat upon its creation in 1965. Today, Marlborough House is home to the Commonwealth Secretariat and the Commonwealth Foundation and has been the venue for a number of independence negotiations and many Commonwealth conferences, including summit meetings of Commonwealth Heads of Government. The House was extensively renovated by the British Government between 1989 and 1993. This splendid and historic building can only be appreciated fully by visiting the House for a guided tour.
So why not arrange a group tour to Marlborough House today? It is sure to be a special and memorable occasion.
Tours usually take place on weekday mornings subject to availability of the rooms and guide. All tours are made by prior arrangement and conducted in groups. The minimum number is 15 people; maximum 30.
The tour lasts approximately 90 minutes. You will be guided through all of the fine rooms, given a history of the building and an insight to the Commonwealth Secretariat's work.
Marlborough House Guide (PDF)