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Banqueting House

Whitehall Palace | Horse Guards Avenue, London SW1A 2ER , England (Charing Cross / Trafalgar Square)
+44 (0)844 482 7777
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London Walking Tour
Ranked #247 of 852 Attractions in London
Type: Architectural Buildings, Historic Sites, Art Museums, Landmarks
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Owner description: This revolutionary building, the first in England to be designed in a Palladian style by Inigo Jones, was finished in 1622 for James I. Intended for the splendour and exuberance of court masques, the Banqueting House is probably most famous for one real life drama: the execution of Charles I which took place here in 1649 to the ‘dismal, universal groan’ of the crowd. One of Charles’ last sights, as he walked through the Banqueting House to his death, was the magnificent ceiling, painted by Peter Paul Rubens in 1630-4. Banqueting House is the last and only surviving part of Whitehall Palace, once the largest palace in Europe, destroyed by fire in 1698.
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158 reviews from our community

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Minnetonka, Minnesota
Top Contributor
201 reviews 201 reviews
83 attraction reviews
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2014

Not much to see other than the ceiling. It is beautiful. It's too bad you can't always get inside to see it. We went during the 2014 London Architectural Open House. They had beanbag chairs available to sit and look up at the beautiful mural ceiling. The bathrooms downstairs were pretty nice.

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Topeka, Kansas
Top Contributor
106 reviews 106 reviews
45 attraction reviews
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2014

The Banqueting House is the only surviving building of Whitehall Palace. It was designed and built for King James I and completed in 1622. It is well known as the execution place of King Charles I in January 1649. In 1698 the rest of Whitehall Palace was destroyed by fire. The Hall within the Banqueting House is the main staple... More

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Bradford, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
9 attraction reviews
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2014

This is the smallest of the Historical Royal Palaces, but is still worth a visit. The entry fee includes an audio guide and examines the period in royal history of James I and Charles I. Allow yourself about one to one and a half hours to fully experience it. The ceiling is stunning and the only one in existence anywere... More

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Byron Bay, New South Wales, Australia
Top Contributor
140 reviews 140 reviews
91 attraction reviews
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2014

The Banqueting House not only enthralled my teenage boys but also myself - The only complete building of Whitehall Palace. Lie on bean bags to admire the amazing Ruben's ceiling while listening to the audio which talks about the perfect mathematical proportions of this room. We stayed here for 2 1/2 hours and still didn't listen to the whole audio... More

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Windermere, Florida
14 reviews 14 reviews
6 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2014

We had the chance of a lifetime to attend a beautiful event in aid of cancer research hosted by Hard Rock International and the Caron Keating Foundation. The Banqueting House at Whitehall has ceiling to rival the Sistine Chapel, they were painted by Reubens in the early 1600s and are jaw-droppingly beautiful. Wonderful event for a great charity - lucky... More

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Perth, Australia
Top Contributor
217 reviews 217 reviews
151 attraction reviews
165 helpful votes 165 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2014

Even though the ''Banquetting House'' (in Whitehall) is only one large room upstairs (with a bit of a café downstairs), it has a fabulous history surrounding it. I only went and had a look because it was part of entry on the ''3 Day London Pass''. I'm glad I did. The Great Fire Of London, The Execution of King Charles... More

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Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
3 attraction reviews
82 helpful votes 82 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2014

We were lucky enough to attend a private dinner here and the place seeps history...would like to go back and explore when not so busy

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Maidstone, United Kingdom
13 reviews 13 reviews
3 attraction reviews
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 30, 2014

There was a short, informative DVD playing for visitors but I would have liked better use made of the downstairs with more to read and look at. The ceiling upstairs was amazing but you couldn't realistically spend more than half an hour looking at that!

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London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
198 reviews 198 reviews
60 attraction reviews
86 helpful votes 86 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2014

So open house 2014. I visited during this period as I knew the entry would be free. There was no queue, although there was a long queue on Saturday. I have to say that this place is worth a visit just to learn about the history of whitehall & Charles I. The ceiling made my jaw drop when I went... More

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Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
14 attraction reviews
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2014

visit with wife, Well worth a visit if just to see the magnificent ceiling , use the audio guide as you walk round and learn the history of the building. Charles 1st was executed here. web site http://www.hrp.org.uk/BanquetingHouse/

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