Friday, September 18, 2015

Into The Hall

For those coming to Ottawa, Rideau Hall has public tours of some of the mansion (the hours vary depending on time of year). While photography is not permitted during the tours (they would slow things down considerably), one is free to photograph when the tours end for the day, so if you're paying a visit, check ahead of time. I took the last English tour of the afternoon before the staff opened the doors to any member of the public to come through, so I went back through the rooms I'd toured just a few minutes earlier. These first shots are in the main entrance hall, where portraits of former governor generals are hung.

Off this room is an exhibit space, where various Canadian honours, such as the Order of Canada, are hung and displayed, with explanations for each. 

And beyond that is this very colourful space, the Tent Room. Governor Generals from further back in time, when they were all British born, are hung here in portraits, while a portrait of Queen Victoria dominates the far wall. This unusual space dates back to the 1870s; Lord Dufferin, the Governor General at the time, had a personal interest in an indoor tennis court. And so this wing was built, doubling as a reception room. The bright colours certainly catch the eye.


  1. Looked like it could have been used as a candy bar in the last two

  2. The candy bar motive is quite unusual...

  3. I was just going to make a comment about a candy bar and see I've been beaten to it! Interesting room! The whole building looks wonderfully elegant.

  4. I don't know I like that pink and white on the walls.

  5. Love the stained glass windows and the striped ceiling makes it feel like a Renaissance Fair. Whimsical!

    Happy Friday,


  6. Yikes!
    The pink stripes sure get the attention of the viewer. Do they call it the candy cane room?

  7. The Tent room reminds me of an English beach hut!
    Jane x

  8. Well I wasn't expecting that William. The pink striped tent room is fantastic, very warm and welcoming. Not sure why I thought it would be a little more austere inside.

  9. i liked the first few pics, but when you got to pink and white stripes, my head said 'circus tent!' :)

  10. Wow, the Tent Room is fantastic! Very unique and pretty looking! The blue chairs give a lovely accent :-)

  11. Love the stripes and that photos are allowed after the tour.

  12. @Bill: it does have that look.

    @VP: I see quite a few people have said that!

    @Mike: it is an elegant place. Very dignified.

    @Marianne: the room's colours certainly do dazzle.

    @Janis: it does have that feel to it as well!

    @Revrunner: very colourful, huh?

    @Gunn: me too... I always love good stained glass.

    @Norma: so did I!

  13. @Birdman: that would be an appropriate nickname!

    @Jane and Chris: another good example!

    @Audrey: merci!

    @Grace: the room really surprised me too. It has a counterpart that I'll be showing in a couple of days.

    @Tex: it certainly has the feel of a circus tent! Back in the day when it was a tennis court, drapes would drop from the ceilings- probably more to protect the windows.

    @Tamago: thank you!

    @Whisk: it was helpful too, because there were guides in each room after the tours ended to answer questions one on one.

  14. It's a gorgeous place but I especially like the tent room.

  15. I wonder how many tennis balls broke the windows :)

  16. I love the tent room, the red and white stripes and arched windows give it a majestic look! :)

  17. love the stain glass & that looks like ribbons on the wall ... wallpaper i would assume? but i can only imagine how it makes you dizzy. ha. ha! ( :

  18. Ah very good strategy William, the tent room is quite something...

  19. So much history. I would be stopping and reading everyone.It's too bad they don't make some of this into travelling exhibits and then it could be seen in the west.

  20. I've seen a cafe decorated like that. The inside is just as handsome as the outside.

  21. Bright stained glass! Great tent room; and such fine history


  22. The magnificent inside interiors. I like the red-white striped room.

  23. That tentroom is very special, but I would have chosen some other colors.

  24. @Sharon: me too!

    @RedPat: many people do!

    @Denise: I've got a video clip in my concluding post that kind of ties into that... though with a different sport!

    @Linda: it certainly does!

    @Beth: I would think wallpaper, yes.

    @Geoff: its counterpart, which I have in tomorrow's post, is something else!

    @Red: unfortunately not doable, unless they sent the paintings on tour of the country during a renovation.

    @Mari: thanks for stopping in!

    @Cloudia: the building and grounds have a whole lot of history.

    @Orvokki: I do too.

    @Jan: the colour might well be an acquired taste.

  25. I'm not keen on the striped wallpaper. Maybe it looks better in person, though.

  26. Wow! What an amazing dwelling! I suppose if I had a place that large the tent room would just be a little self-indulgent whimsy.

  27. I really liked it until I saw the striped room. What were they thinking?

  28. I've been here. I cannot remember when!
    You are so right about photography slowing things down. We went to the palace in Versailles, France, and there were huge line-ups, people being pushed through, drove me nuts!

  29. @EG: I think it's a matter of personal taste- either you go for it or you don't.

    @Kay: that's true!

    @Linda: I wouldn't do it myself, but in that space, it works.

    @Jennifer: the system they have in place seems to work well.

    @Shelly: it's quite a space.