Buckingham Palace?

Why doesn’t Buckingham Palace look like a palace? To me, it could pass as an office building more than my image of a palace! Did the architect have absolutely no imagination?

I don’t see this as a General Question and have moved it to MPSIMS.

samclem, Moderator

Looks perfectly palatial to me.

What ‘palace’ features are you thinking it’s missing?

What’s a palace supposed to look like? It looks fairly grand to me.

Perhaps your views are affected by the fact that Buckingham Palace started life as a non-royal residence, Buckingham House, built for the Duke of Buckingham.

Well it sure ain’t no Neuschwanstein. By God, when I am promised a palace I want towers and turrets and long flapping banners. Maybe a damsel in distress. And a moat with a draw bridge. Don’t give me a post office. I’ll even settle for Hampton Court. You can’t trot out Buckingham Palace and pawn it off as a real palace with a real queen and stuff. I’m not buying that one. :dubious:

It helps to remember that a) it was built as a private home, and converted into a palace later, b) built by someone who wasn’t royalty, and c) it’s English.

I agree, it looks like a typical government building, something like a “Department of Commerce.”

But I think some people are confusing palaces with castles.

That’s a castle, which is a different thing from a palace.

A palace is a grand residence. A castle is a fortification.

Compare Buckingham to Versailles.

What I want to know is, do tourists really mess with the palace guards, trying to get a reaction out of them? And if they do, why is it allowed?


Because the UK is a country in which the rule of law prevails. Parliament has yet to make it an offence to try and make someone laugh. The oversight may be deplorable but, until it is remedied, how are you going to restrain behaviour which is not illegal?

Shoot a tourist every now and then. You’d be surprised how quickly the rest fall into line.

By that you mean, it’s not like in the US, where private security can ask you to step back, regardless of whether your action is legal or not?

Pretty much what I came in to say. A castle can be a palace, and a palace can be a castle, but neither one has to be the other. Krak des Chevaliers is a hell of a castle, but it’s no palace. And Versailles is a hell of a palace, but it’s no castle.

The Palace has its own entry, with better pictures. Including this lovely panorama.


I linked the city entry, didn’t I? I really need to read my own cites…

When I went to London about 10 years ago, the guards were by the main building, which is far from the front gate and were pretty much inaccessible to the public.

I had my GF take a picture of me “not touching” a palace guard with my finger.

Well, okay then. ETA: To both of the two last posters.

But the poor troopers at Horse Guards are right out there in public. Horse Guards Parade, incidentally is worth seeing – much more photogenic than the changing of the guard at the post office where HRH sometimes lays her head (lies her head?).

That’s “HM,” if you mean the Queen (“Her Majesty”).

It was a lot more modest when it was just Buckingham House:

Buckingham Palace seems sufficiently palatial to me now:

And especially when they have the balcony draped for the Royals to come out and wave:

It’s even nicer on the inside: