Queen Victoria Building

Member Rating 3 out of 5 by billmoy on March 8, 2002

The Queen Victoria Building, a large building stocked with boutique shops, art galleries and dining establishments, was designed by George McRae in 1898 to replace the old Sydney markets. The Romanesque building, which fills an entire city block in central Sydney, has been renovated in great detail to maintain the quality of the mosaic tile, the stained glass, and so on.

Even if you are not shopping for anything, it is fun to take a look around inside and out. The plaza outside features a statue of Queen Victoria and the Royal Wishing Well.

Inside, there is a replicated display of Queen Victoria's crown jewels, with a fetching statue of the youthful monarch at the time of her coronation. The Great Australian Clock, north of the central interior dome, is categorized as the "world's largest hanging animated turret clock" (what a category). This gaudy timepiece depicts scenes from Australian history.

One of the more peculiar features inside is the Royal Clock (Gallery 2, South End). At the top of each hour, a slew of mechanical action figures act out scenes in England's history. The most memorable is the hourly re-enactment of the execution of King Charles I in 1649. Yes, the head of the poor king is rolled off the chopping block every business hour. I found this to be unintentionally hilarious.

Queen Victoria Building
455 George Street
Sydney, Australia, 2000
+61 (0)2 9265 6869


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